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Garden Report – May 17th

May is my favorite garden month because everything is so fresh and wonderful looking.  Plus lots of good things to eat and much to anticipate.

Here’s what’s happening in my garden:

Not all my pea seed germinated. What did — looks fabulous.  First planting (of 3 plantings) is 3 1/2 feet tall and clinging nicely to the sticks I stuck in the bed.  Has pods already, although still flat.

First plantings of peas.

New Lettuce everywhere!  Twelve varieties.  I’m in heaven.  Stuff from last fall is still sweet and delicious although starting to stalk.

Lettuce everywhere! Yeh!! Peas show in background. Broccoli and onions show.

Baby Reine Des Glaces lettuce. One of my favorites!

Mizuna is gorgeous as well as delicious.  I’ve planted 3 times so far.

Arugula – gorgeous as always.  Pulled a lot up so it wouldn’t take over the garden.

Still eating Hakurei turnips with more on the way.

Hakurei turnips with a little lettuce mixed in.

Eggplant seedlings in the grow bags and growing!  Have two other varieties in jugs to germinate.

Chard — beautiful!  Three varieties.

Cabbage is heading.  Looks good. Two varieties.

Cabbage is heading.

Broccoli is starting to form broccoli. Two varieties.

Broccoli

Beets – two varieties.  Look better than any beets I’ve ever had.  Thinned them this year.  Usually, I don’t because I just want the greens — this year I want both.

These beets were the first of 3 plantings this season.

Usually don’t grow carrots, but tried some this year.  Only two wanted to germinate.

Russian Kale.  Still eating that planted last fall.  Mild and delicious with no hint of bitterness.  Still blooming and forming seed. Spring planted ones are also doing good.

I’ll soon be able to harvest new potatoes from those volunteers from last year.  Three rows of potatoes planted this spring look great. Did it different this year in the interest of time and space.  Did not cut seed potatoes and planted closer together.  I think my soil is rich enough to accommodate that. My final planting of potatoes for this year will go in this week.

Potatoes.

Onions fabulous.  Starting to bulb.  Out of this world delicious.  Rationing to 3 a day until they get bigger.

Onions are starting to bulb.

Mache (corn salad) going to seed already.

Radishes planted continually since February.  We’ve eaten a lot. But I’ve rationed to 4 a day since March — and I don’t like to ration!  Lots more coming.

Spinach is still sweet.  Will pick a big bowl of spinach, beet greens and chard tomorrow and have baked greens (and onions) with an easy and honest to goodness cornbread! (no flour — just cornmeal — and it’s so much better than with flour!)

Spinach and Chard.

Still harvesting asparagus. Spears are not quite as big as last year.  (I think it’s the roots from the monster trees 30 feet or more away! We’ll see.) Still tastes great.  Probably will stop harvesting June 1st.

Not all my tomato plants are in the garden yet.  Those that are look good.  In different stages of growth. The one from the seed I saved last  year — looks better than any. They’ll all do ok in the long term.

Tomato plant from seed I saved last year.

Lipstick peppers in the garden.  Other varieties will take their assigned spots this week.  Still small of course.

Cukes are germinating. Planted via wintersown method to give me a bit more time.  Where in the world will I put them?

Planted squash via wintersown method.  Buys me time.  I hope a space to plant will turn up.

Strawberries still doing good.  A medium basket a day.  Perfect for eating fresh.

Blueberries are growing.  I’m glad I don’t have to pick right now, because there is so much else to do.

Raspberries are forming.

Blackberries are forming.

Plenty of figs forming.

All kinds of wintersown seedlings have been transplanted to the garden and borders.  Borage, aztec spinach, malabar, magenta spreen, chinese celery, lovage, parsley, rosemary, lavender, sorrel, nettle and more.

Strange Sweet Potato Story: Saved a favorite sweet potato from last year.  Put it in a grow bag in late winter.  Wanted to see if it would give me slips. Nothing showing on top — so looked for it today.  Dug around the entire grow bag looking for that potato.  Nothing to be found.  Soil is gorgeous.  Guess I’m not going to plant sweet potatoes this year.

How’s your garden doing?

I plant Marguerite in the garden as food for beneficials. It's just starting to bloom.

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Organic Gardening is easy, effective, efficient —- and it’s a lot healthier.

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12 comments to Garden Report – May 17th

  • Sandra

    Maybe it’s wrong to want to compare, but I loved being able to see how things were doing in your garden! It gives a bit of a benchmark for gardeners less experienced. Thanks Theresa.
    PS
    You were right, your tomatoes have caught up!!

  • Theresa

    I think it’s always fun to compare notes. If we don’t have anything to compare with — it’s hard to know if we are doing as well as we can be.
    And not all my tomatoes have caught up — but they will. 🙂
    Have a great evening Sandra!

  • Steve

    Your garden looks great! Quick question – what kind of tomato supports to do you prefer? Last year for the first time I pruned my tomatoes as they grew to one major stalk/vine. This seemed to help them be more productive but they grew taller so I’m in the market for new supports. For some tomatoes on the perimeter of the tomato area I am using conduit pipe frames with netting. But for the internal locations I will need something else – thanks.

  • Alice

    Thank your for sharing the photos of your garden. It is amazing the similarities of your garden and mine which is thousands of miles away and our altitude is 4,500 feet.

    I also am picking lettuce, arugula, spinach, kale, onions, radish and have tomatoes (some have blossoms), peppers (peppers and tomatoes have walls of water protecting them)in the ground. Picked our first broccoli a few days ago.

    Asparagus is almost finished. I pick a couple each day, bring them in the house. blanch for three minutes, pop into a bowl of ice water, then put them in a jar of pickling brine in the refrigerator. Soon I will have a full quart of pickled asparagus. Peas are flowering and we picked a couple of small pods for a “taste”.

    Going to plant the “winter sown” method squash and cukes this weekend. Thank you again.

  • Theresa

    Those wall of waters are great! I used them years ago and they really do the job to get those tomatoes to you earlier.
    Glad to hear the “winter sown” method has been of benefit to you. I just love it. Makes things so convenient.
    Loved hearing your garden update Alice! Thanks for posting.
    Theresa

  • Theresa

    I started out with tomato cages, Steve. I really liked them. When they finally gave out after a decade of use, I bought what they now call tomato ladders. They are very substantial and I like those as well. I’ve used those for 14 years. They have some now that fold for easy storage but I don’t mind the ones that are firm and don’t fold.

    You might look at Burpee

    Also Cooks Garden — and here’s a code for $10 off if you decide on them Now through 5/31, Save $10 Off on Orders of $50 or more with code CAFF1050 at CooksGarden.com!

  • Theresa

    Just for everyone’s information – know what you are getting before you order.

    I just received an email from a reader telling me about tomato towers – 3 for $15.26. These are not the ones I use. These inexpensive ones have only 3 wires that go into the ground for support AND they are 1/2 the size of the ones I use.

    The ones I like have 4 wires that go into the ground for support and they are much larger in mass. Same height – but bigger. These will be twice the price — but in my opinion are much better if your tomatoes are heavy and bushy like mine.

    There are also some that are heavier wire, large in mass like the 4 wire, have 3 wires and also very stable because of the way they go straight down rather than taper out at the bottom like the think ones. I haven’t seen these around — so I’m not sure they are making them anymore.

    See links in my comment above this one. If there’s interest I’ll do a post with more explanation
    Theresa

  • Julie

    thanks for all your photos. I too like to compare. Thanks to your encouraging posts, I planted potatoes for the first time this year. I am following your suggestion of covering with layers of straw. They are doing fantastic.
    Thanks again for all your great info.

  • Theresa

    Julie I’m so glad to hear that your potatoes are doing fantastic and that my posts were encouraging. Wait till you taste those new potatoes! They’re wonderful!

    Here’s a special link for more Garden Pictures taken May 20th

    And — you are very welcome for the information. 🙂
    Theresa

  • Sandra

    You are growing nettles, Theresa?

  • Theresa

    Yes. I started them wintersown on March 28th. Even though there wasn’t a lot of seed in package, I have more than I need. One of TMG readers who know a lot about healing herbs told me that nettle and lemon balm makes a wonderful tea. Can hardly wait to try it.

  • Betty Dotson

    Theresa,
    I bought a lot of plants at a Master Gardener’s Sale yesterday. (Added greatly to the list of flowers that would help draw the pollinators!) Also bought lemon balm because a young lady told me how she made tea with it & how good it was, & lovage. I would love to hear how you use it. Another I bought was summer savory. Have you used that & if so, would you share the best way to get the benefits from it? Please share your experience with nettles once you’ve had the chance to use it.

    I have so much to learn about healing herbs & I would love to hear it from an organic gardener’s standpoint.
    Modern Medicine certainly hasn’t helped me or Alfred & in some cases the side affects of it has harmed us!
    I can’t tell you enough just how much your sharing your experiences & encouragement has helped me personally.
    Thanks again,
    Betty

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