May 27, 2019 at 8:38 am #16289
Our weather (and home renovations that are seemingly taking forever) has not been conducive to starting a garden, but last week, my husband cleared out the old one. We could not get to the seed we wanted, as it is stored in a mini-refrigerator in the garage and has too much in front of it (stuff to move back into the house, as well as my husband’s wooden row boat). My husband found some old tomato seed and planted it. He decided it was not going to germinate and told me to buy a plant at the farmers market. I chose one named “Carbon” that is not supposed to have giant tomatoes. He planted it. This morning, he announced that the others do appear to be germinating. He also planted broccoli. He has ordered some snow peas and bell pepper. Beans will be planted later.1+May 27, 2019 at 10:16 am #16292
My husband rolled out in his wheelchair and planted three tubs with cucumbers and summer squash a few weeks ago. There are small squash and the cukes look great. I have planted twelve tomato plants and have one more to go. I have some pepper plants to get in yet.
He went to our high school FFA greenhouse and got the plants. It was the next to last day of sales so selection was not that great. I looked up the peppers that had two tags and I think they are hot ones. I will give them to a local boy that loves them. That will just leave me with three sweet banana peppers this year.
He bought a pack of five little things that I have no idea what they are. It will be fun to see what develops with them.
The FFA has such nice sturdy plants and we look forward each year to getting them. We got them on 4/26 so I have had to move them outside during warm days a lot and keep them watered.1+May 27, 2019 at 10:53 am #16293
It’s been so wet here that we’ve delayed planting. I have 6 Celebrity seedlings, 2 cherrys, and a patio tomato to plant this afternoon, before I leave for the week tomorrow. I do also have a planter on the deck with herbs. But I’m cutting way back on gardening this year. My hat is off to your husband for continuing to garden from a wheelchair.
2+May 27, 2019 at 11:09 am #16295
- This reply was modified 3 months, 3 weeks ago by chocomouse.
We’ve got nearly a dozen flats of plants, flowers as well as vegetables, waiting to be planted if the weather ever cooperates. In the last week we’ve seen temperatures drop into the low 40’s with wind chills in the mid 30’s twice and we’ve had about 4 inches of rain, 1.75 inches of it in the last 15 hours.1+May 27, 2019 at 12:25 pm #16296
We are at 30″ of rain for the year with 42″ the normal yearly rainfall. Many days of rain are in the forecast for the next seven days.0May 27, 2019 at 2:53 pm #16298
Most of my Rosemary survived the winter. I had three small plants indoors as insurance. I gave the youngest away and planted the others in the ground. They were fine living in a pot over the previous summer but weren’t thriving over the winter, I think they were root bound.
The Chinese chives were doing great March-April but now many of them are dying. This looks root rot due to the rain and bad drainage. I had a similiar problem two years ago and hope that these will recover eventually. Also the chives are covered with small black insects.
The Amaryllis went outside about three weeks ago and are doing fine so far.2+June 11, 2019 at 5:28 pm #16578
Yesterday, I picked two cucumbers from our tubs.2+June 11, 2019 at 5:35 pm #16579
I didn’t think it was possible to kill chives. My mother poured the foundation for her rebuilt garage over her chives garden, and they came up at the edge of the garage 2 years later!2+June 11, 2019 at 6:08 pm #16580
We’ve added a bell pepper plant, beans, and snow peas.
The lime tree, which bloomed while inside because it was warm, only had one lime to show for it. However, there was just enough cold after it was moved outside for the summer that it was stimulated to bloom again, so I’m hoping more limes will develop with the pollinators around.
We have some black raspberries coming on our terraces. Once again, the north side has set fruit, and the south side has not. My husband plans to pull those up and put in other berries–maybe strawberries? Our several little blueberry bushes also are looking good.1+July 14, 2019 at 4:45 pm #17038
We got our first tomato of the season today, a Fourth of July tomato about the size of a ping pong ball, but there are a number of green tomatoes on other plants, some Early Girl and some Romas. With the hot weather, I don’t think we’ll see many more fruit set the next few weeks, but if we get a cool spell later on like we did two weeks ago I expect we’ll get a bunch more to set then. The plants are ready to set fruit, just need the cooler weather to do it.3+July 14, 2019 at 7:05 pm #17040
That sounds wonderful, Mike, I hope your weather turns soon. My cherry and patio tomatoes are loaded with fruit, but green. The Celebrity tomatoes and peppers have lots of flower buds. We ate all the lettuce I had in a planter on the deck, and the second planter of lettuce isn’t quite ready to eat. Nothing else will produce for at least a month. But everything is looking green now, instead of yellow — the sun has finally risen here in the east and the rain has stopped. We have received about 5 inches more water than is average for the year. I’ve had some mobility issues, so I never did get the whole garden planted, and what I did get done was late. Next year, I’ll be growing most all the vegetables in raised beds, planters, and pots on the deck.2+July 14, 2019 at 8:02 pm #17041
We had tacos tonight using that tomato, just enough for the two of us.
Some places in central Nebraska, 150 or so miles west of us, got 6-9 inches of rain in a single day earlier this week, lots of flooding, even I-80 was closed for a while. It’s just been a really tough season for farmers, it wouldn’t surprise me if we get a long hot dry spell now.2+July 16, 2019 at 9:57 pm #17078
I used our snow peas in a stir-fry for dinner tonight. We have harvested a few beans as well–not yet enough to use. The Carbon tomato has green tomatoes–in spite of a deer eating off the top of the plant! I have put some coffee grounds out to deter them. The other tomato plants have flowers. There is a little bell pepper on the pepper plant. No flowering from the broccoli yet.1+July 17, 2019 at 1:52 pm #17092
Mike, I’ve grown 4th of July tomato and it was always my first one to be ready. They would usually start to come in around this time for me. It was always a good producer.
This year I decided to go with slicing tomatoes and didn’t do any 4th of July size (another good one in that size is Mountain Magic although it comes in a little later). This year I got a late start due to the cold wet weather. I don’t have anything to pick yet (except for herbs) but things are looking good so far.
There is my Early Girl Bush hybrid, they claim it gets 18 inches high but mine is a lot higher. You can also see my overcrowded herb garden. I need to thin it out a little.2+July 17, 2019 at 2:00 pm #17095
And here are my other 3 tomatoes. They are getting nice and tall. They have flowers and some small fruit forming. They are Summer Girl, which is my earliest variety, Damsel and Oh Happy Day.2+July 17, 2019 at 7:09 pm #17102
Those look great Len! My container tomato (given to me by a friend with a greenhouse, I have no idea what variety it is) is only about 12-15 inches tall but has over 50 tomatoes, still green, on it. They are bigger than a cherry tomato, but I don’t know how large they will get. I’m given a mystery tomato every year! Fun to watch it grow, not always such a great thing to eat!3+July 17, 2019 at 10:02 pm #17105
Len your container garden plants are beautiful!Nice!1+July 18, 2019 at 12:31 am #17108
Thank you Chocomouse and Joan. I’ve been using those containers for 5 or 6 years now, although this year I expanded from 2 to 4. It’s a neat system, there is a coned plastic divider that separates the soil from the water compartment, there are holes in the cones that allows water to wick up into the soil. It holds about 4 gallons of water. So you just keep the thing filled and you have consistent and even watering.2+August 5, 2019 at 9:38 pm #17384
We have finished (and frozen some) of our bean crop. Our snow peas have finished up as well.
So far, I’ve gotten two tomatoes off the “Carbon” tomato plant. One was past its useful life; these tomatoes tend to have a dusky red he and dark green around the top when ripe, and so we missed seeing it was ripe. The other I used in a salad, and it is delicious. There are plenty of green tomatoes yet on the plant, as well as on the ones that my husband started from seed. I suspect that there will be a mad tomato rush at some point.
Some kind of caterpillar has been chomping my husband’s broccoli plants, which have not developed any flowers. With the construction, the grass around the fenced garden perimeter is rather long. Next year we will try a “clear” zone around the perimeter. For now, my husband is executing any caterpillars he finds.
There are four peppers on my bell pepper plant. We are waiting for them to turn red, as we do not care for green ones. The plant has some flowers, so there may be more.
My husband never got to the woods to pick black raspberries, due to the construction, so we only ended up with a few from there. I was only able to make 3 1/2 cups black raspberry jam. However, 90& of the berries came from our front terrace. When my stepdaughter was here, she went out to the woods with my husband and tasted some of the last of the black raspberries and loved them, so I included the 1/2 cup jar with the birthday present we sent.
I’d hoped for lots of blackberries, since I always seed them; thus, I need lots in order to make straight blackberry jam. My husband’s woods used to have some nice ones, but the trees have now come up and shaded them out. I’ve been picking what we have on the front terrace. I expect those to finish up this week. If I don’t have quite enough, I’ll sneak in some blueberries to make up the shortage.
Some of our wild blueberries on the terrace produced a bit of fruit, but my husband is saving those for seed. Our two commercial plants are young, and so had very little fruit–and one has been crowded by the construction scaffolding. I expect that they will do better next year.
My husband is going to try one more small bean crop. While it seems strange to think of a freeze when we are sweltering in August, the reality is that it could happen by the time they are producing, so he will put them toward the center where he can cover them if necessary.2+August 5, 2019 at 9:47 pm #17385
We were out of town during black raspberry season this year, so I don’t know how many there were, but I’m sure the birds enjoyed them all. But I was able to buy a jar of seedless black raspberry jelly at a small farmer’s market on Saturday, so I’m happy. We’ve got some volunteer maple trees that seem to be crowding out the elderberries, I may have to get some more elderberry plants and put them along the east side of the house where the dogwoods are. Most of the dogwoods died off a few years ago when our gardeners cut them back, but they’re trying to make a comeback this year.2+August 6, 2019 at 4:31 pm #17400
BakerAunt, I’m curious about your terraces. Why so much difference between the north and south? Is it the amount of sunlight? Is the soil in both similar? Will you have the soil tested for pH and nutrients before you plant something new? Do you compost?0August 6, 2019 at 7:55 pm #17402
We’re starting to get a trickle of tomatoes, I picked about 8 small ones again today, nearly all about the size of a ping pong ball, mostly 4th of July but a few Romas and one Better Girl. The plants aren’t producing big fruit yet. I’m hoping the cooler weather we had last week triggered another round of blooms setting fruit, which will mean a good crop of tomatoes in late August or early September.
I saw an article online today stating that Minnesota corn farmers, who got their crops in late, like nearly everyone else, are now worried about an early frost further cutting yield. There are signs of an early onset of cooler weather here too, and I’m told the ruby-throated hummingbirds are starting to show up, maybe a week or so earlier than normal, so I started to get the feeders ready today.2+August 6, 2019 at 9:05 pm #17409
Chocomouse–We live on a bluff that has a steep hill down to the lake. We think that the cottage owners in the 1930s may have put in the terrace because a nearby neighbor remembers the woman’s flowers from when she was a child. That woman’s initials, A.M. (Anna Minas) are carved in the cement of the top of the concrete steps, so they certainly did the steps. The walls are stone, but may have been changed around by the people who bought the place in the 1950s. The terraces’ original purpose may have been erosion control. (I’ve been researching the owners of the house and its history. It might make a good writing project.) When we moved in, there were a lot of an ancient reed plant on the various levels, some flowers, and two large trees. The black oak is still there, but we had to have the sassafras removed because it had heart rot, and had it come down in a hard blow it would have hit the neighbor’s house.
My husband wants the terraces to be a natural landscape, which makes us stand out with the “suburbites” here. He has planted various native wildflowers and plants, as well as a couple more trees. He introduced the black raspberries and the blackberries, and now the blueberries. We actually got more black raspberries on the other side this time, so we shall see what happens in the future. I am allowed to pull a couple of kinds of weeds, but mostly I leave it alone, as once I pulled out a plant he wanted. Oops. My husband has been carting gravel out of each level, as well as plastic that was put down under the gravel by the 1950s-2004 residents to deter weeds. (It didn’t work.)
It’s a bit on the wild side, and once the house is complete, my husband will have more time to devote to it. We have columbine in the spring, black-eyed Susans, some day lilies, and other plants that attract butterflies, bees, and even hummingbirds.
I would like to start composting, both for the terrace and for our garden in the back. Once we are more settled, I plan to learn about how to do it.
1+September 12, 2019 at 10:38 am #18139
- This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by BakerAunt.
- This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by BakerAunt.
I picked tomatoes this morning, probably about 40 pounds worth, should make at least 6 quarts of sauce.3+September 12, 2019 at 10:48 am #18142
I bought a two compartment tumbling compost bin from gardeners.com last year but I think I loaded it with too much ‘brown’ and not enough ‘green’ last fall because it hasn’t produced any compost yet this season. I’ve been throwing more green stuff in it lately in the hopes of getting some compost by next spring. I probably need to put water in it more frequently, too.
Around here an open compost heap is an invitation to the raccoons, possums, foxes, mice, voles and other critters. It’s probably even worse for you in Indiana.2+
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