Monday, July 30, 2012

Harvest Monday- July 30, 2012

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne's Dandelions.  Stop by and see what other's have harvested this passed week.

The beans are really starting to produce.  right now it's mostly bush beans, but the pole beans should be taking over very soon.

Mixed beans both bush and pole, slightly over a pound.

From the left, 'Cherokee Wax', 'Velour', 'Fortrex', 'Cornetto Largo Verde' and 'Greencrop'.
Tomatoes are trickling in and the shallots are being pulled a few at a time.

"Silvery For Tree' and 'Victor' tomatoes, 'Ambition' shallots.

The cherry tomatoes are starting to turn colors.  I noticed this on 'Italian Dwarf Cherry' and 'Amy's Apricot'.  The 'Black Cherry' tomatoes are taking their sweet time ripening.

This week I'm hoping to start harvesting my summer lettuce.
'Redina', 'Nevada' and 'Cardinale' lettuce from Renee's Garden Seed 'Summer Bouquet Mixed' lettuce.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

July Blooms

Some of what is blooming around the garden.

Pale yellow and red striped 'Bon Bon' zinnia.

Cream and red striped 'Bon Bon' zinnia.

Cactus flowered 'Bon Bon' zinnia.

'Spun Gold' marigold.

The cactus zinnia patch.

'Salmon Sunset' four o'clock.  These plants survived the mild winter.

Close up of 'Salmon Sunset' four o'clock.

Enormous umbel of flowers on one the 'Ruby' lettuce being saved for seed.  It looks like this produce thousands of seeds!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Rabbit or Deer?

Yesterday morning I took a walk down the length of the driveway to check on the plants in the bed alongside it.  I noticed that my peppers plants looked a bit odd.  They were sheered evenly along the top. Hot peppers and sweet peppers alike were affected.  Then I noticed that the buds on my 'Chicago Peace' rose were gone as well.

There are two large rabbits and a tiny baby that have the front yard as part of their turf.  Rabbits have been running around the front for years.  I always make sure that any plant on their diet is along the front walk which they tend to avoid.  I have never had a problem with them eating pepper plants.  Even if they suddenly developed a taste for them, wouldn't they eat from the bottom up and not the top down?

There are deer very close, the mountain is full of them.  I am hoping that this was an isolated incident.  I moved once because I could not deal with deer eating everything in sight! 

What do you think?  Would rabbits stand on their hind legs and sheer off the top of a plant?  I have a bad feeling about this...

Monday, July 23, 2012

Harvest Monday- July 23, 2012

This week was my smallest harvest in quite some time.  Do to all the rain this week I could not get into the garden until today.  Everything was still wet, so only the beans on the edge of the patch and pole beans could be harvested.

'Cornetto Largo Verde' pole beans and 'Velour' bush filet beans.
Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne's Dandelions.  Stop by and see what other bloggers have harvested this week.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Somethings Rotten On the Mountain

That would be the the bulk of the spring lettuce going to seed and the rest of my escarole.  We have had well over two inches of rain since Friday.  Yesterday we had a light, steady rain all day long.  The rain, combined with the high temperatures has not been a good combination.  Today their has been no rain, but it is overcast and the grass is still wet!  So far, my two enormous 'Ruby' lettuce plants that blooming like crazy are still healthy.

Thursday and Friday we had tremendous down pours that flattened the cosmos long the driveway and those 'Ruby' lettuce plants.  Today I was finally able to get out and prop them up.  

The heat and rain have been a boon for the cucumbers and pole beans.  Their leaves are now getting enormous!  The 'Black Cherry' tomatoes are now at least a foot taller than the 6ft fence they are trained on.

'Diva' cucumbers and pole beans racing up the trellis.

The 'Dvia' cumber leaf is larger than my hand.

'I could fit three hands on this 'Blush Potomoc' leaf.

'Black cherry' tomatoes reaching for the sky.

'Cornetto Largo Verde' pole beans ready for harvest.

The zinnia's are also growing like crazy.

From 'Bon Bon' mixed zinnia.

Unknown cactus zinnia.

Another unknown cactus zinnia.

A very unusual form from the 'Bon Bon' zinnias.

'Spun Gold' marigold.
I haven't been able to harvest much last week.  It was usually to wet to get into the garden.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

"Black Death"

Black tomato death, that is.
This is the second year in a row that my potato leaved black tomatoes have dies in July.  Both 'Balck Sea Man' and 'Putple Pear' have gone from healthy plants a week to wilting and dead this week.  It's very puzzling as they are amongst other tomato plants that are thriving.

I've noticed no spots on the leaves or stems.  The plants just start to wilt and are dead within a week.  Hmnn... these varieties are both from Russia.  Maybe they can't take the extreme heat.

Oh well, such is garden life.  I'll be loaded with ripe 'Black Cherry' tomatoes soon as well as 'Amy's Apricot', 'Reisenstraube', 'Ivory Pear' and 'Italian Cherry'.  I won't even mention the 'Victor' tomatoes that are absolutely loaded and starting to ripen.

There is always next year...

Monday, July 16, 2012

Harvest Monday- July 16, 2012

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne's Dandelions.  It's a great way to see what others are harvesting.

The harvest are finally getting more varied.
This weeks consisted of the the first red cabbage, the first 'Victor' tomatoes, shallots lettuce, escarole and basil.

'Primero' cabbage and 'Victor' tomatoes.

'Ambition' shallots grown from seed.

'Full Heart Batavian' escarole.
'Gentilina' lettuce and the first 'Victor' tomato.

'Purple Ruffles' basil.

'Siam Queen' Thai basil and 'Purple Ruffles' basil.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Expansion Continues

I was able to do some work on cleaning up the area in front of the potager.  The bearded iris had steam rolled over everything in their path!  The rest of the 'Immortality' clump was removed and the bulk of 'Clarence' was removed as well.  I was then able to fork the soil and begin to remove the bermuda grass, crown vetch and Canada thistle roots.  I was surprised that after seven years the soil is still in good shape.  I expected some thing on the order of bricks, but it was still dark and friable.

The biggest surprise was that several daylilies that I thought had been gone for years were still there, barely clinging to life.  I have moved 'Cherry Valentine', 'Totally Tropical' and 'Swashbuckler Bay' to an intensive care bed.

I still have a lot work ahead of me, but I should finish by months end.

The potager is in the back.  the cleaned out section is now 4ft by 6ft.

The massive bloom clusters on 'Reisenstraube' tomato keep getting bigger.  I hope it has a good taste as the production will be massive.

I'll not need more than bloom cluster like this!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Today in the Garden- July 14, 2012

The day started off with a light rain.  I used this as opportunity to catch up on my harvests.  Lettuce, escarole, shallots, basil and the first 'Victor' tomato.  I then applied a solution of miracle-grow and Epsom salts to the containers.  The day remained overcast and the foliage never completely dried off so nothing else was done.  I don't like working with the plants when they are wet.

The home made bamboo trellis is quickly starting to fill up,  The pole beans have reached the top and the 'Diva' cucumbers are starting to climb.

'Diva' cucumbers starting to vine.

"Blush Potomoc" pole beans.  These have retained the hug leaves from parent 'Potomoc'.
The bush beans are blooming like crazy and are sizing up nicely.  The cherry tomatoes against the fence are growing like gangbusters and the bloom clusters are huge.

Part of the bean patch with cherry tomatoes trained against the fence.

'Black Cherry' tomatoes.
The zinnias are coming into bloom.  The 'Bon Bon' zinnias which had only a vague description are striped. The dwarf zinnias from Burpee were mislabeled as usual and are full sized cactus zinnias.

The first bloom on the 'Bon Bon' zinnias.

Cactus zinnia from Burpee's mixed up seeds.

I am hoping that tomorrow will be drier.  I need to finish digging out the 'Immortality' iris and the 'Clarence' iris.  When this task is completed. I'll have half of the area in front of the potager cleaned out.  Then I can start on the daylily section.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Harvest Monday- July 9, 2012

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne's Dandelions.  It's a great way to see what other gardeners around the country are harvesting.

The heat seems to be have sent the earwigs elsewhere.  I was able to harvest Swiss chard again. 

This week brought the first of the tomatoes, 'Silvery Fir Tree'.  The first two were eaten before they could be photographed.  The shallots have begun to mature.

What would my harvests be without lettuce?

Two from 'Wild Garden Mixed' lettuce, a romaine and an oak leaf.

'Gentilina' lettuce.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Heat and the Garden

The garden seems to be handling the heat much better than the gardener.  Then again the garden is probably more intelligent than the gardener!

Yesterday was the hottest day so far this year.  The temperature was going to be in the triple digits.  What does the gardener decide to do,  but divide his 4 foot wide clump of 'Immortality' iris.  Not one of my brightest moves.  I did get most of the clump removed and replanted some of the divisions temporally until I can give them away.  I can now get to the front of the potager.  Now that the first step has been taken in clearing the area, the task does not seem as daunting.

Like Granny, I've been over watering too.  Since my growing area is small I can give it a good watering daily and survive the heat. The pole beans and tomatoes seem to be getting taller each time I go out to the garden.  The peppers have finally decided to fill out and start blooming and the basil is growing like weeds!  I do share Granny's conclusion that over watering results in bland tomatoes.  I'm going to try and water mine less often.  Not easy to do when everything is planted so closely together.

Potager basking in the morning sun.

The bush bean patch.

'Inuk's Wang Kong' runner bean has reached the top of the trellis in one week.

The 'Reisenstraube' tomatoes have the biggest flower clusters that I have ever seen.

The 'Velour' bush beans are covered in attractive purple flowers.

My best sweet peas are the ones interplanted with the tomatoes!

The 'Silvery Fir Tree' tomato growing in a pot is loaded with fruit.

Pay no attention to the date stamps on the pics.  My camera decided it would be great fun to reset the date stamp, and I'm too lazy to reset it...

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A Face Only a Mother Could Love

Daylily seedlings are like children,  Each one unique and different in it's own way. 
Some have a face that only a mother could love.
This is a seedling that I've been growing for over 10 years and is now a huge clump.  It has just started to flower and the color is unusual to say the least!

Five blooms open at once.
Yes, that is the true color.  It opens lavender and quickly fades to tan with a lavender edge.  Hmnn... I'm still waiting for the ugly duckling to turn into a swan...