Archived Monthly Posts

Garden More than Half Planted, Too Much Friggin Rain

Lettuce and potatoes were planted about 3 weeks ago, the broccoli, kohlrabi, and peas about 2 weeks ago.  I decided not to plant cabbage in the spring because of all of the slugs problems I have had over the years (planting kohlrabi instead because it is my new favorite vegetable).  I will continue to plant cabbage out in the fall.  I was about one week behind schedule on getting the lettuce seedlings transplanted out into the garden, due to the cold and wet weather.  I will be planting out the brussels sprout seedlings hopefully within the next week or so.  The weather has been way too wet for my liking, but there is not much one can do about that.  With favorable weather, I plan on getting my peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, and celery seedlings planted within the next 7 to 10 days.  I really need for the soil to dry out a bit in order for me to seed my pole lima beans.  I have been harvesting the overwintered lettuce, radishes, and green onions for over 3 weeks now.  My spring planted lettuce should be big enough to start harvesting some of the outer leaves within the week…..Yea!!  I really enjoy my spring lettuce every year.  Happy Gardening!!

Seeds Started, Weather is Getting Warmer

All of my seeds have been started: lettuce seeds were started on March 2nd; broccoli, brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, and celery were started on March 14th; Peppers were started on March 20th.  All of them have germinated, except for the peppers, and have been moved to the cold frame.  The weather is starting to warm up a bit and the rain has finally let up a little.  I should be receiving my onion plants from Dixondale within the next few days and hopefully I will be able to get them in the ground within the next week or so.  Speaking of onions, my top-setting onions planted last fall are really starting to grow now with most plants having 4 to 5 inches of green top growth already (see pic below).  I might start harvesting some for green onions within the next few weeks!!  I directly seeded some radish seeds and a few more top setting onions under the plastic covered hoop that I overwintered some lettuce plants in.  Peas might get planted  in 2 weeks, depending on the weather.  Happy Early Spring Planting!!

Fall Planted Top Setting Onions Growing Nicely - 3/21/16

Fall Planted Top Setting Onions Growing Nicely – 3/21/16

Cold Frame is Up, Starting Seeds Soon, Still Harvesting Carrots

I put up my cold frame up on February 20th, so spring is not too far away.  I do not have anything in the cold frame at this time, but I will be starting some lettuce seeds indoors in about another week, depending on the weather.  Once they germinate, I will move them out into the cold frame.  Shortly after that I will start seeds of broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, and kohlrabi.  Still waiting for the weather to warm up a bit, although the high temperature here in Central Indiana was 72 degrees 5 days ago, it has since cooled back down with even a little bit of snow 2 days ago.  I now have received all my seeds that I needed to order so I am ready to start planting.  I harvested some of last fall’s carrots the first week of January (see pic below), that were growing under the plastic covered hoop, with over half still currently in the ground.  During the last warm spell I emptied the smaller of my two compost bins and spread the compost over about half of the garden beds.

Scarlet Nantes Carrots Harvested on 1/9/2016

Scarlet Nantes Carrots Harvested on 1/9/2016

2015 Fall Garden Update - WOW

Sorry for the delay in posting updates, but better late than never.  I hope everybody had a great Christmas.  My 2015 fall garden really produced for me this year. This might have been my best fall garden ever!!  The weather was great, although maybe a little drier than I would have liked it, and the temperatures were a little warmer than normal.  All plants produced very well: broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, radish, carrots, lettuce, kohlrabi, and the late planted beans.  This was my first year at growing kohlrabi, and it did not disappoint. The fall planted kohlrabi (variety Kossak) grew fantastic.  I still have most of the carrots out in the garden under a plastic hoop.  I will be harvesting them over the next month of so, unless the weather turns very cold, then I will harvest them sooner.  I planted my top setting onions about the third week in October and they have started to poke little green leaves above the surface of the soil.  I have included some pictures below of my fall bounty.  My mailbox is starting to fill up with seed catalogs, so you know spring will be here before you know it.  Wishing all of you a very happy and prosperous New Year.

Giant Kohlrabi Awaiting Harvesting, 11-10-15

Giant Kohlrabi Awaiting Harvesting, 11-10-15

A Truly Giant Head of Cauliflower Just Before Harvest, 11-19-15

A Truly Giant Head of Cauliflower Just Before Harvest, 11-19-15

My Hens Cleaning up the Broccoli Plot, 11-24-15

My Hens Cleaning up the Broccoli Plot, 11-24-15

2015 Fall Garden Producing Very Well

The fall garden, edition 2015, is growing very well and producing an abundant harvest.  I harvested the first fall broccoli about 5 days ago, with many more heads to come.  The cabbage is just about ready to harvest and the green bean plants (growing in the old corn raised bed) are overflowing with bean pods.  Some of the kohlrabi is nearing maturity, but the cauliflower is still about one month away from harvesting.  The weather remains desert dry, but at least the temperatures have been a little above normal.  Looking at the weather forecast, it now appears that the first fall frost might only be about 5 days away.  Time to get some row covers ready! Also been harvesting what now appears to be the last peppers of the season.  My 2015 fall garden harvest will probably finish a little bit above average.

Broccoli Head Awaiting Harvest, 10-9-15

Broccoli Head Awaiting Harvest, 10-9-15

Very Large Cabbage Head, Variety Golden Acre, 10-9-15

Very Large Cabbage Head, Variety Golden Acre, 10-9-15

Green Beans, Variety Derby, Growing Nicely, 10-9-15

Green Beans, Variety Derby, Growing Nicely, 10-9-15

Kohlrabi, Variety Kossak, Nearing Maturity, 10-9-15

Kohlrabi, Variety Kossak, Nearing Maturity, 10-9-15

Early Fall Garden Update - Desert Dryness Continues

Well, I should have known, the record July rainfall has been followed by nearly no rain for the period August through mid September.  Despite the dryness, the early fall garden is growing fairly well.  The early August transplanted broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and kohlrabi, are doing just fine (see pics below).  I have been watering them really well once a week. Most of the broccoli looks to be on target for an early October harvest, with the cabbage soon to follow.  The cauliflower and kohlrabi will probably not be ready until late October or early November.  The weather has not only been dry, but also hot for the last few weeks.  It has cooled down a bit over the last few days.  The early August planted carrots are doing okay, but they still look a little small right now. I planted some radishes about 3 weeks ago and they are just starting to get some size to them.  Harvesting continues on green beans, peppers, tomatoes, lettuce, and celery.  The last planted green beans growing in the old corn raised bed have just started to flower, so harvest will probably begin on them in another 3 weeks or so.  The first fall frost is probably another 3 to 4 weeks away.  Happy Fall Gardening!!!

Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi

Broccoli Plot

Broccoli Plot

Cabbage and Broccoli Raised Bed

Cabbage and Broccoli – Raised Bed

Cauliflower Raised Bed

Cauliflower – Raised Bed

Green Beans - Raised Bed

Green Beans – Raised Bed

Harvesting Continues, Fall Garden Planted

Harvesting continues in the garden despite the record July rainfall.  The weather has finally turned more “normal” for August and the garden has responded nicely.  A decent amount of roma tomatoes were harvested and processed for sauce using my food strainer (see pic below).  Two of the six roma tomato plants are almost totally devoid of leaves, but the other plants look okay for now.  There are still many red tomatoes on the plants.  The two 4ft by 4ft raised beds planted with Red Norland seed potatoes produced about 2o pounds of potatoes (see pics below). Harvest also continued on the hot banana peppers, green peppers, super chili peppers, and poblano peppers.  I finally was able to get some bush green beans to germinate after replanting several times due to all of the rain.  The last of the sweet corn was harvested about 2 weeks ago and bush green beans were quickly planted in that bed.  All of the lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and kohlrabi seedlings have now been transplanted out into the garden.  Scarlet Nantes carrot seeds were planted out into the garden at the beginning of August. Out of 11 brussels sprout plants planted in the spring, only 3 have survived due to the very wet July.  I will be planting some radish seeds within the week.

It is hard to believe, but the first fall frost is less than 60 days away.  With decent weather, I am hopeful for a good fall harvest.  Happy late summer gardening!!

Food Strainer Processing Roma Tomatoes on 8-7-15

Food Strainer Processing Roma Tomatoes on 8-7-15

Red Norland Potato Harvest from Raised Bed One

Red Norland Potato Harvest from Raised Bed One

Red Norland Potato Harvest from Raised Bed Two

Red Norland Potato Harvest from Raised Bed Two

Way Too Much Rain!!!

My garden has received way too much rain over the last 2 weeks, nearly 8 inches of rain!!!!  Needless to say, parts of my garden are suffering from too much moisture.  My broccoli looks really bad, but at least the main heads have all been harvested.  The wet soils combined with the slugs have pretty much done in my spring planted cabbage.  The Jade Cross brussels sprouts look really bad right now, but there is still a chance that they will pull through.  The celery continues to struggle with a few more plants developing blackheart issues, probably due to all of the rain.  One of my Roma tomato plants has developed some yellow leaves because of all of the rain…..go figure.  Both the bush green beans and the pole lima beans are also suffering due to too much rain.  There is some good news to report, I just harvested the Red Norland potatoes that were growing in the fabric grow bags.  Despite all of the rain, they grew really well (see pic below).  The other Red Norland potatoes growing in the two raised beds will be harvested in about another two weeks.  The cucumbers are growing pretty good and I harvested enough to put up 11 jars of refrigerator pickles about one week ago.  The Silver Queen white corn is growing really well and it looks like some of the ears will be ready to harvest in about another week.  The onions were pulled up about 5 days ago and if we get a few dry days in a row, they should be ready to store by the end of the week.  The onion crop looks to be only fair this year.  The hot banana peppers have really started to mature and I harvested quite a few yesterday.  Here’s hoping for better weather for the latter part of the summer and this fall.

Red Norland Potato Harvest from 4 Fabric Grow Bags

Red Norland Potato Harvest from 4 Fabric Grow Bags

Cabbage, Broccoli, and Brussels Sprouts Look Really Bad

Cabbage, Broccoli, and Brussels Sprouts Look Really Bad

Silver Queen Sweet Corn Looks Really Good

Silver Queen Sweet Corn Looks Really Good

Early Summer Garden Update

Wow, things have been pretty busy in the garden over the last month or so. It has been pretty dry here up until the last 5 days when it has turned tropical, with rain every day and high humidity. Started harvesting the kohlrabi, variety Kolibri on June 8th. Most of the harvested kohlrabi were around 4 to 5 inches in diameter.  It was super easy and fun to grow. I liked how it tasted. I thought it tasted similar to cauliflower. Also been harvesting a few hot banana peppers, lettuce (of course), the last of the radishes and green onions, and the first heads of broccoli on June 17th. With all of the heat, most of the lettuce plants have or are starting to bolt (sending up a seed stalk).  When lettuce bolts, it starts to get bitter.  I have some new lettuce seedlings to transplant out when the older plants get pulled out sometime this next week.  The warm season plants (corn, cucumbers, beans, tomatoes, peppers, etc.) are really starting to grow.  The garden peas are are nearing harvestable size now.  The spring planted onions are growing fairly well and are starting to bulb up.  The cabbage is growing okay, but it is getting a little crowed by the broccoli.  I will be removing broccoli leaves near the cabbage as I harvest the main broccoli heads.  The Silver Queen corn is already 3 to 4 feet tall.  The Red Norland potatoes are starting to really grow and some of the vines have started to flower.  The potatoes in the fabric bags are growing like crazy and are a little ahead of the one growing in the raised beds.  The potatoes in the fabric bags will probably be ready to harvest in about another 3 weeks.  The celery is also growing well, but one of the plants has developed “blackheart” (https://nevegetable.org/crops/physiological-disorders-0) and will be pulled up.  I have been having issues with this on my celery plants for several years now.

The first official day of summer is tomorrow, June 21st (the longest day (daylight) of the year).  The first week in July is fast approaching, so I will be starting seeds of broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and kohlrabi then for the fall season.  That is right, I said FALL.  I posted a few pictures of my garden below.  More pictures can be found on my Facebook Page.  Happy Summer Gardening and Harvesting!!

Kohlrabi, Variety Kolibri, Just Before Harvest on June 8

Kohlrabi, Variety Kolibri, Just Before Harvest on June 8th

Nice Head of Broccoli Just Before Harvest on June 17th

Nice Head of Broccoli Just Before Harvest on June 17th

Garden Peas Almost Ready to Harvest

Garden Peas Almost Ready to Harvest

 

Spring Garden Fully Planted

Wow, I have super busy in the garden over the last month.  My spring garden is now fully planted.  I just finished planting seeds of pole lima beans and bush green beans yesterday.  The spring garden is growing really well so far.  I started harvesting my spring planted lettuce on May 10th.  Wow, is the lettuce growing fast.  I think the leaves grow 2 inches a day!!  Homegrown lettuce is far superior to any store bought lettuce.  I have also been harvesting a lot of radishes and green onions.  Hopefully in another month I will be harvesting broccoli.  I have attached a few pictures of my garden below.

I now have four new chickens (hens) that are about 8 weeks old (see pic below).  The 2 whites chicks are Delawares, and the 2 orange colored ones are Buff Orpingtons.  They are as cute as can be.  They will be integrated with my existing flock of 6 hens when they get a little older.

Happy Spring Planting!!

Spring Lettuce is Growing Well

Spring Lettuce is Growing Well

Silver Queen Sweet Corn is Already About 3 Inches Tall

Silver Queen Sweet Corn is Already About 3 Inches Tall

Red Norland Potatoes Starting to Poke Up Through the Soil

Red Norland Potatoes Starting to Poke Up Through the Soil

My New Spring Chicks

My New Spring Chicks