Watch My Garden Growing

My gardening attempts in a new environment.

Second Time Around

Since the eggshell experiment failed, I decided to go with traditional starter trays with 98% success! I am guesstimating the percentage; however, I planted three 72-cell trays and all but 24 cells have fully germinated. 24 out of 216 – you do the math, I don’t really care. 🙂 Oh, and I replanted 12 cells and transplanted the corn to larger cells. So, I guess I have planted 228 and I have partial germination in the 24 cells (I plan to replant once I transplant the other cells into larger containers).

So here they are: (since they are in a window pictures are dark, but you can see the growth)

wpid-img_20150409_072019527_hdr.jpg      Corn babies. wpid-img_20150408_145150079_hdr.jpg wpid-img_20150408_145157417_hdr.jpg         Lettuces, spinach, etc.            wpid-img_20150408_145211753_hdr.jpg

 

 wpid-img_20150408_145205947_hdr.jpg       24 Hour growth of peas and beans!wpid-img_20150409_072012783.jpg

I purchased clear plastic solo cups to transfer my non-cold resistant plants into to allow them to grow a bit more. My plan is to transplant the cold hardy plants into the garden this weekend. Peas, lettuce, etc can go in the garden bed while the others can get a little more strength while we begin hardening them off during the day. I will probably need to replant the onions, leeks, and chives as they are not looking their best and am not certain they will transplant well. Since I am square foot companion gardening this year I can direct seed in a couple of the squares and transplant what I have. I will thin them out as necessary.

Due to my dirty, rotten, stinking allergies being twice obnoxious this year I am not as ready to plant this year. I will have one bed ready this weekend and possibly have the second moved and filled. One day outside in windy conditions sent me inside for four and one-half.

For more information on square foot gardening: http://www.melbartholomew.com/

For companion gardening: http://permaculturenews.org/2010/07/30/companion-planting-guide/

For companion square foot gardening: http://www.mysquarefootgarden.net/companion-planting/

 

 

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My Garden is Growing

We have had some wonderful weather this past week and I thin every growing thing has grown a foot! I will be posting pictures tomorrow to show the growth we have seen this week. Before and after.

We are also planting red, yellow, and blue potatoes tomorrow. Building fences to let the beans and peas grow upright. A bunch of mini-projects in the garden but the outside needs some sprucing and weeding as well.

Oh, and we are putting in a new compost area to recycle the scraps in the kitchen! We started small this year with composting. We have discovered that by running the scraps through the blender/food processor first and then placing them in the garden they compost much faster. My husband has been dumping the raw scraps in a corner of an old garden area but I made him stop because a couple squash seeds germinated! We are going to put them in a different area and throw in some old seed potatoes to watch what happens. The soil is pretty great and the brown matter is available as well. We are going to use some old logs around the area instead of building new raised beds.

A lot to do outside before tackling my indoor projects. Cleaning, cooking, lesson plans, laundry and sleep by 8 AM. Hahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!! Yeah, right.

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Look who visited my garden.

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We had to cut him loose as he was caught in the deer netting. She/he (I don’t know how to tell the difference) is a 4 foot long black snake. When he figured out we were trying to rescue him, he stopped shaking his tail at me as I cut him free. Ryan snapped this shot as I was about to cut his head free.

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Spring time again

 

Well, it is time again! We have the new garden almost in and the netting is up. Mark and I spent this week cleaning a space and putting the fabric

down. We built our three beds today, and finistartingshed filling 2 of them.

Hopefully, tomorrow will allow me to fill the 3rd bed. I hope to get the plants in this week. 🙂

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Tomatoes, Peppers, Rain and Snails … oh, and chickens, too!

I have never before seen such large snails in my garden. They have been on every plant. Every herb, every vegetable. I am sure the fact that the sun does not hit the garden nearly long enough has something to do with the whole problem. And the rain. It doesn’t just rain her and then get sunny – all better. No, it stays cloudy for a day first, then rains by bucket loads and then stays cloudy a day later. Or so it seems to me and my poor plants. The peppers are still not happy about it. I planted two new peppers in a sunnier spot. I transplanted one pepper to a sunnier spot. We will see what transpires.

I had to pick a bunch of tomatoes after the last rain. They began to split. I did not want to lose them to insects to I picked them and brought them inside. We may have a plate or two of fried green tomatoes. We did have a few orangey-red ones so I took those too. The weather said rain. I see white clouds ans sun. Go figure.

 

Update on chickens:

Seems like the hawk that lives in our neighborhood has eaten a couple. Went from an even dozen to about 8, at last count. They are still getting out of the fenced enclosure and pooping on my doorstep. Hubby sent an email to the property manager – he stepped in it. She let him know the chickens would be relocated on Sunday. It is sad they could not have just taken better care of their animals. We don’t care about the chickens, but we care about stepping in poo when we are walking to and from the car. Maybe they have learned a lesson? Probably not. We have become the “bad guys” for ‘telling on them’. Actually, if my husband was a bad guy he would have called the police as having chickens where we live is illegal. If he was a bad guy he would call animal control about the dog who is left in her crate for 8-12+ hours six-plus days a week. Yeah, we’re are the bad guys.

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Been gone

I have been away from home for two weeks and left the garden to my husband. The first week, he was also gone and he came back to overly ripened cucumbers. He said they were all yellow and had to be discarded. 😦 I am really bummed because had he gone home when I though he was going, they would have been edible. Otherwise, I would have asked my neighbor to pick and eat them.

The tomatoes, he said, are finally coming along. If you remember, we had some storms that damaged the tomatoes and I had to cut the tops off. The have rebounded and hubby said he will have to support more of the branches.

He also said we have baby squashes!! WOOT!! Not much to say on anything else in the garden.

He did say that SOMETHING ate all of the petunias down to a stub and one of the potato tops?! We moved the petunias to the highest part of the brick ledge to deter the deer. We fenced in the hostas for the same reason. He is going to finish netting in the potatoes as well otherwise we may not have any at all!

I miss my garden. Even more when I see my hosts’ garden growing nicely – without tending, unless they are doing it by the moon. Anyway. They have some great big red tomatoes that I’d love to sink my teeth into.

I have almost been away from home too long. The longest has been a month without friends or family. This is nicer, though, as I am making friends and they are happy I am here. I will go home in about ten days to go to a conference and then return to Onancock for a couple of weeks more, I hope. We will see.

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What the ….

Roast beef

Roast beef (Photo credit: Mike_fleming)

purple crocuses with closed bloom Français : D...

purple crocuses with closed bloom Français : Des crocus violets, avec leurs fleurs fermées. Italiano: Infiorescenze chiuse di piante del genere Crocus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Where did spring go?! It was 45 when I got up for work this morning! I hope it doesn’t get any colder at night or my tomatoes and peppers will be very unhappy. We cooked a roast in the crock pot and had red potatoes and carrots

along side. Winter food! No marshmallows on the grill tonight, brrrrr!!

Hubby watered for me today and we are expecting rain tomorrow. Keep those fingers crossed for temperate climate this year. My friend in Colorado is dealing with SNOW!!! Such a four-letter word! Pretty but COLD! Another four-letter word for this southern girl.

Keep gardening my friends!

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Rain, Rain, GO Away!

My poor plants! Between the deer getting to the hostas and petunias and the rain flooding my backyard, let alone home, and causing my beautiful tomato plants to break – I am pooped. We are going to get new soil and hay and a trellis to hold them up. I am afraid I will have to cut the tops of the plants off to remove some of the weight. These storms have been awful!

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Drowning

Well, thanks to Miss Andrea (Tropical Storm for those of you who do not watch the weather channel or any news programs) my poor tomatoes are drooped over. They were pretty heavy-topped to begin with and with the 9.45 inches dropped in as many hours everything is wilted and droopy!

I cam home last night as usual and finished making dinner. Sitting in my living room where I can see a goodly portion of my kitchen I noticed water seeping from under my refrigerator.

“Honey?” I begin, “Why is water seeping out from under the fridge?” Did I forget to remind you that I just came home from a very long and tiring week of end of school year mayhem? Well, I did.

“Noooo.” He responded. Yeah, we are very loquacious at 5:30 on Fridays.

We got up to investigate and found water seeping from between the floor and walls of our basement apartment. As I turned to look at my husband I noticed water pouring from my bathroom.

“Oh no!” I say. “Water is pouring out of the bathroom!”

Okay, you get the drift. Not only was it coming from the bathroom into the hall, it was coming from three of the four sides of our very square shaped apartment. We immediately moved any and all damageable furnishings and other items. We checked the laundry area to find the drain … well, NOT draining. I ran to retrieve towels to stop and absorb the water flow. The first round of water removed and towels in the washer to ring out as much water as I could before putting them back on the floor. We did this a couple of times before hubby called the property manager who came out with an industrial wetvac and assisted me with water removal. You may be wondering where hunny-bunny was while we toiled? Remember, he just had surgery so the job was mostly mine.

When the rain eased the flow of water eased, when it poured – you get it. Finally around 9:30 PM the rains eased and the water stopped flooding my apartment. I was able to put a third of all my towels into the washer for a real washing and take a break. No real damage. Two cardboard boxes with contents wet. I few cloth items stored in the laundry will need a washing. My nightstand got a little damp. You would never know we were flooded if you did not see the pile of towels being washed and dried or the giant wetvac in the laundry or the dehumidifier running to remove any semblance of moisture.

We were exhausted by bedtime. I haven’t looked at my gardens yet to see what damage 9.5 inches of rain can do. I am pretty sure it won’t be pretty. I will post pictures soon.

Oh, the benefit of some minor flooding? Any hiding of spider carcasses or dog-hair dust bunnies have been found and eliminated! The tile floors are REALLY clean!

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One goal accomplished!

We have this ugly retaining wall that was dug out and filled with gravel when stairs were put in last year. I filled about six inches in (on top of landscaping fabric) with a compost mix.

There is not enough sun there to grow  much more than what you see. Wild strawberries, catmint and hostas – which the deer got to last week!

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Seems the deer liked the light colored variegated hostas. They took a couple of bites from the darker ones but ate the leaves from all the lighter ones. We put up some fencing as a barrier. It is only temporary but it will keep them out!

So I put hubby to work elongating the area to put in peas and potatoes. It was a very warm morning so he is looking a might peaked!

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There is a little hay and dirt in the spot and the peas and potatoes are already growing. I added a little wood ash around the peas and beans to see if it will help keep the insects at bay!

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Check out a few of my visitors:

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