Friday, February 13, 2015

not much happening - the late summer report

The garden is producing, but I haven't really been maintaining it. At this point, it's mostly harvesting and a little bit of prep/planting for the winter.

The tomatoes are a mad tangle:


But are producing as much as we can eat! The plan for next year is to get a few different varieties going - the only ones that have been really productive this year are the grape and the cherry.

The potatoes are not holding back:


I would really like to mulch them up to get more potatoes, but I don't have any compost readily available right now. Hopefully they're forming potatoes under the mulch though, and not just doing leafy te2000 hings.

After repeated sowings that were eaten by...something I know not what, I finally have another crop of corn. This one is Crop #3, and it's going to be a very late crop, unless I can seriously nurture it along. May need some manures to give them an extra boost.


I am wondering if next year I should seedling the corn and then plant it out - it would give me better control over the placement of the plants - this year's crop tended to be a little bit everywhere. The very earliest planting died of heat exposure (my fault), and several of the recent plantings didn't get beyond the first sprout stage, since something ate the kernel and the seedling both. I kept these ones from being eaten by putting a plastic box over them to 'hothouse' them.

The spaghetti squash is producing at least one squash:


I'm kind of looking forward to this - I just have to work out when to harvest it. And does the skin need curing? I have a garden shed that should get plenty of sun for it! There are a couple of others growing, but they're not quite so well-advanced as this.

And, frankly, the spaghetti squash is doing the best out of this year's curcurbits. The cucumbers aren't quite growing, the Waltham Butternut is mostly rotting, and the Golden Nugget is just sitting doing nothing. So, yeah. This year's pumpkin attempts, not so great.

Also starting to produce - the strawberries!


I'm thinking that next year I'll grow a bunch of strawberries from seed. Apparently you need maybe 500 plants per person if you really like strawberries, and it would be lovely if we didn't have to keep buying strawberries for my sister.

You can barely see them, but here are the start of some borlotti bean pods!


They're in the front garden - I grew a few of them as green mulches more than anything else, and they're doing okay - not great, just okay.

The fruit trees in the front are all doing 'okay'. But I'm worried about this peach graft: is it getting sunburned?



I was kind of planning a 'front yard chill spot' that I figured would give the medium-chill fruit trees a chance to actually produce. Basically, a little grove of trees on the south-western side of the house, so it's shaded by the house to the north, and by the jacaranda the rest of the time - with the exception of that brief leaf-drop that jacarandas have in the middle of summer.

Thinking about produce goals for next year:

1. not have to buy any:
- basil
- coriander
- thyme
- mint
- oregano
- sage

2. through summer/autumn not have to buy any:
- tomatoes
- pumpkins
- corn
- cucumbers
- zucchini

...although the tomatoes are easy peasy - this is just this year, and from a random sprout out of one of the fruit tree pots:


3. through summer not have to buy any
- avocadoes
- lemons/limes
- stonefruit
- apples

4. through autumn/winter not have to buy any:
- potatoes
- carrots
- pumpkins/squash

I need to work out some more perennials that I can grow and eat.

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