Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Last Day of June- Random Blooms

A random sampling of blooms.  These have been some of the hardest to capture accurately in  a photo.  To see them at their best, click to enlarge the pics.
 Above, 'Alderman' petunia.  This is the actual color, plum with a blue wash.

 Above, 'Improved Rose King' petunia.

 Above, 'Janie Primrose' marigold.

 Above, 'Cherokee Sun' rudbeckia.

 Above, 'Oklahima Salmon' zinnia.

 Above, 'Stripes and Picotee's' carnation.

Above, first bloom on 'Mini Bella Picotee Velvet' petunia.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Harvest Monday

The only photo I'm showing this week is the last of the peas.  A mix of purple podded 'Pretty', green podded 'Freezonian' and 'Blizzard' snow pea.  They all went into a chicken stir fry.

I did harvest more lettuce and arugula, but was too lazy to picture it.

The pea vines will be coming out this week and that area will be seeded with pole beans, cucumbers and 'Caserta' squash, and I might try again with cabbage and beets.  Indoors I'll be seeding 'Variegated' collards and 'Rainbow Mixed' lacinato kale.

This week I should also be harvesting my first cabbage.

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne's Dandelions.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Late June Garden Part 2= The Driveway Bed

The driveway bed been growing like gangbusters since the last pics were taken.
Above, overview of the driveway bed.  My cousins do not agree, but I think it looks more attractive than the flowers I used to plant here.  Of course they will change there minds when the harvest starts coming in.

The photo's below follow the progression from left to right in the above photo.
Above, from left to right (zig-zagging): 'Toscano' basil, 'Sunset Giants' marigold, 'Rotundo Bianca Sfumata di rosa' eggplant, 'Tennessee Spice' pepper, 'Golden Dwarf Champion' tomato, 'Serato' basil.

Above, from left to right (zig-zagging): 'Tennessee Spice' pepper, 'Golden Dwarf Champion' tomato, 'Serato' basil, 'Kaleidoscope Mixed' pepper, 'Rotundo Bianca Sfumata di rosa' eggplant, cinnamon basil.
Above, Above, from left to right (zig-zagging): 'Red Lettuce Leaf' basil, 'Sunset Giants' marigold, 'Cherry Brandy' rudbeckia,  'Kaleidoscope Mixed' pepper, 'Rosie O'Day' alyssum,  'Janie Primrose' marigold, 'Rotundo Bianca Sfumata di rosa' eggplant,  'Cherry Brandy' rudbeckia, 'Red Lettuce Leaf' basil, 'Janie Primrose' marigold, 'Psyche White Picotee' cosmos.

Above, from left to right (zig-zagging): 'Janie Primrose' marigold, 'Psyche White Picotee' cosmos, 'Janie Primrose' marigold, 'New Big Dwarf' tomato, 'Cherry Brandy' rudbeckia,
'Janie Primrose' marigold, 'White Seashells' cosmos, 'Kaleidoscope Mixed' pepper.

Above, from left to right (zig-zagging): 'Janie Primrose' marigold, 'Rotundo Bianca Sfumata di rosa' eggplant, 'Cherry Brandy' rudbeckia, 'Button Box Mixed' zinnia, 'Kaleidoscope Mixed' pepper, 'Rozalinda' tomato, 'Button Box Mixed' zinnia, 'Cherry Brandy' rudbeckia, 'Sunset Giants' marigold.
Above, 'Tennessee Spice' pepper
Above, 'Serato' basil
Above, 'Kaleidoscope Mixed' pepper
Above, 'Rotundo Bianca Sfumata di rosa' eggplant, look closely for the buds!
Above, 'Red Lettuce Leaf' basil
Above, 'Rozalinda' tomato

The eggplants should be in flower soon, the peppers are loaded with buds and have begun to bloom and the tomatoes have loads of flowers.  The annual flowers tucked in for color should be blooming soon as well.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Late June Garden- Blooms part 1

The garden is starting to reach it's prime.  I'm still amazed at the amount of growth since the end of May.
Above, one of my favorite colors from the 'Balcony Mixed' petunia's.  This has turned out to be a great mixture with lots of interesting colors.
Above, a clump of 'Sense of Wonder' daylilies.
Above, a gorgeous blue from the 'Balcony Mixed' petunias.
Above, the main flower bed by the pool is starting to enter it's peak.
Above, the current star of the pool flower bed, 'Powwow Wildberry' echinacea. 
Above, one of the two cosmos pots.
Above, on of the four matching pool pots.
Above, look at the awesome growth on the 'Fresh Look Red' celosia and 'Merlin Blue Morn' petunia.  I have been having problems with the 'Pampas Plume' celosia in the large pot.  They have been starting to rot even though I keep the soil on the dry side.  I think that I will put on some zinnia seedlings for insurance.
Above, a perfect flower of 'Eloquently Edged' daylily.
Above, the raised bed in peak bloom, the huge white clumps are double shasta daisies.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

June Blooms- Daylilies etc,

Daylily season has begun.  One benefit to all that spring rain is a massive amount of scape's and incredible bud counts.
Above, 'Minstrel's Fire'
Above, 'Pearl Harbor'
Above, 'Purely Exotic'
Above, 'Bright Tomorrow'
Above, 'Spacecoast Starburst'
Above, 'Spectral Elegance'
Above, 'Improved Rose King' petunia
Above, 'Oklahoma Ivory' zinnia

Monday, June 20, 2011

This Weeks Harvest- Spring Crops Winding Down

With this weeks harvest I'm getting down to the last of the Spring crops.
Above, a deep bowl of 'Feezonian' and 'Pretty' purple podded peas.
Above, endive from an escarole/ endive mix from Pinetree Seeds.  Next year I will be planting a lot more endive and escarole and a lot less lettuce.  The endives are more heat resistant and MUCH more bug resistant.  Slugs and earwigs ignore them while they love to feast on lettuce.
Above, this 12" bowl is entirely 'Ruby' lettuce.  This is from two plants.
Above, arugula from the second planting.

Not shown, separate bowls each of 'Galactic', 'Flashy Green Butter Oak', and 'Les Orielles de Diable' lettuce.  Also not shown- all the other endive and arugula harvests.

I was able to harvest one lonely carrot... no picture, it was eaten immediately.

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne's Dandelions.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Tomato 'Victor'

This tomato had been on my want list for years.  The only source I could find was Sandhill Preservation Center, and ever year they were not available... until this year. 

It won a bronze medal in the 1942 All America Selections, and was highly touted in the catalogs.  Park Seed carried it well into the 1950's.

Burpee's 1942 catalog has the following description: "60 days. A first early,  heavy cropping with fruit the size and shape worthy of a mid season variety.  Developed at North Dakota Experiment Station especially for the northern states, Canada, as well as dry and mountain areas.  Tomatoes are scarlet, very uniformly colored, 5ozs in weight, semi globular, fairly smooth and refined.  Plants are small, short, and may be set as close as two feet apart in the row; they are not suited to pruning or staking.  Amazingly productive over a long period."
Above, the first cluster which has begun to ripen.  In size I would say it compare to a "saladette" tomato.  All fruit in the cluster are smooth and blemish free.
Above, enlarge the photo and note that the clusters are very close together, less than 2 inches apart.  And this is only one stem.

Above, click to enlarge and you can see how nice and compact the plant is.  It does grow a bit wide, but so far hasn't taken up that much space.

My three plants are short, very healthy, well behaved and starting to pump out a large quantity of fruit.  I'm hoping the first ones are ripe by the 4th of July.  I'm hoping that they taste as good as they look.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Vegetables as Ornamentals

Last year I planted a few extra pepper plants in the bed along the driveway.  Those peppers were the best growers and producers.  I decided that this year I would plant mainly vegetables with flowers as accents.  They have not disappointed.  Here are the latest pictures.
Above,eggplant, bush tomatoes and sweet peppers with cosmos and 'Cherry Brandy' rudbeckia.

If you take a lot the above pictures and attach them end to end you have the entire area with the vegetables,
Above, a pepper close up.  Lots of buds and lots of new branches.
Above, eggplant close up.  There is no flea beetle damage!!!
Above, close up of one of the bush tomatoes.

I can't figure out why these are doing so much better than those in the PSP.  There is less competition and less crowding, but the soil is almost straight clay.  All I did was break it up and scratch in some 10-10-10,  The PSP soil has many years of amendments and is much more friable.  It is watered less and the amount of sun is the same.  The mysteries of gardening...

After these pics were taken, I added some 'Janie Primrose' marigolds and 'Button Box' zinnias as an edging.  I also scattered in a few 'Sunset Giants' marigolds.  I'll also be putting in a few of my more ornamental basil's.  I'll keep you posted on the progress.