well, this year's garden is nothing compared to SciFiChick's beautifully weeded and maintained rows, and it's certainly not as "sexy" as Pioneer Preppy's, and we have had some hits and some epic fails, but we are still pleased with some of the progress.
here check out this beautiful sunrise. it was taken at about 4:15am.
yes, we are early risers but not at 4:15am!!!! but that's what time we have been getting up, every single day for the past few weeks. a family of 5 ravens, all of whom are the size of a dog (think lab not shiaztu!), have been showing up every morning, landing on our roof, jumping up and down and squawking their fool heads off!!! arghghghgh. jambaloney gets up and goes and shoos them away, sometimes they listen, sometimes they just jump up and down harder. if they listen, they just sit in trees near the house, squawking and squawking! we try to go back to sleep but it is near impossible!
first up in the garden update - check this out!
that is a baby pepper!!! all 40 of my pepper plants are covered in flowers and they are loooooving the heat and humidity in the greenhouse! i already have a baby pepper and it's only the first week of july - wooohooo - score!
another score - almost all of my tomatoes have gone to flower - again - in the first week of july?!?!?!? oh it looks like we will be having a bumper year with tomatoes and peppers!
one of the reasons they are doing so well is that this year we are noticing tons of bumble bees, solitary bees and a variety of flies that look and act like bumble bees. we have been very concerned for the past 2yrs as we weren't seeing any bees. but by allowing the land around us that had been cleared to just return to it's natural wild state, and not mowing all of wildflowers and clover all the time - there are bees everywhere!
another reason why there are soooo many bees is this:
that's comfrey, a very useful medicinal plant. you can learn more about comfrey here. be careful if you plant it as it spreads and spreads. comfrey leaves make great mulch for around your plants and comfrey is excellent in your compost! we have allowed the comfrey to spread wherever it wants and i am allowing this plant to go to seed to gather seeds and then plant the comfrey in strategic places all around the yard.
the reason why is because of the bees!!! no matter what time of day, and no matter which plant you are looking at - the whole plant is covered in bees!!!! and all different kinds!!! honey bees are not native to north america and if you have a diverse population of solitary bees, then you don't need the honey bees for pollination. i am so glad that the bees are back! also, hummingbirds love comfrey too, so it is a very fun plant to grow! i love my comfrey!
just look at those babies!!! we have 8 tires planted with garlic and another half-bed besides the one above. we eat a lot of garlic around here! i guess that's why we never have problems with vampires!
how about i brag some more about the garden. thank you. i will. check this out!
oh ya, baby, potatoes!!! we have planted a ton of extra potatoes all over the place not just the ones you see here. we will have a definite bumper crop this year and we'll be eating potatoes until the first ones are ready next year! woohoo! score!
another score - check out the baby tadpoles!
they are just so cute to watch! and once they become toads or frogs or salamanders or whatever they are - they will eat all kinds of mosquitoes!
the peas are doing awesome this year - sorry no pic - i'll get one for the next update! the beans are so-so at best. the melons, squash and pumpkins - eh - it's anybodies guess.
now for the epic fails! my beets have been in the ground almost a month and still haven't grown! my french breakfast radishes which i should be harvesting, taste woody - like all of them! thank goodness that the easter egg radishes and cherry belles are ok - but we love french breakfast radishes!
the even more epic fail than the ones listed above - i transplanted 36 cucumbers and i have 1!!!! that's ONE!!!! ugh. i was getting crazier and crazier every morning when we would take our first morning walk and i would see that the slugs had decimated the actual stalks of the cucumbers! same thing for the zucchinis - i transplanted 36 and have 3 and a half - the half is a little guy that looks like he is really trying but i don't think he's gonna make it - arghghghghgghgh! all of that work for nothing! and now i have to start all over again! i might see a zucchini or a cucumber in october! geesh, eh?
all of the herbs are planted and seem to be doing well - we love fresh herbs and now with the greenhouse built, we can fresh, homegrown herbs probably through to december! it's gonna be awesome.
how about a food epic fail? i am always tweaking recipes and trying different things but man do i hate it when what i thought was going to be the most awesomest pasta salad ever, turns into a bland piece of crap!
that up there is my infamous tuna, apple, mayonnaise and wasabi pasta salad! (i also put garlic, apple cider vinegar, turmeric, cumin and cayenne in it) - THAT pasta salad is one of our favourites! but i got to thinking - "hmmm, how can i add more punch. what would knock that pasta salad out of the universe?". and then i came up with it! AVOCADO!!!! what in the world doesn't taste better with avocado in it?!?!?!?!?
EPIC FAIL! normally the pasta salad belts you in the head with the flavour of the wasabi. i used twice as much wasabi as usual and twice as much of the other spices. BLAND! oh man were we disappointed. and i made a ton of it because we like to have something in the fridge to snack on when we don't want to cook. and we ate it. and groaned. and had to finish the big, giant pot for days, groaning.
but since i like to finish posts off in a positive way - check out another score.
that's our first full meal from our garden! we have sporadic things here and there but this is the first delicious breakfast straight from our garden - beet greens, garlic scapes and green onion. cooked until slightly wilted in a big 'ol chunk of butter! with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. DEEVINE!