June 22, 2009

Garden Progress Report

Alright, so I was impatient. As you can see, the Swiss chard did grow after all! It's thriving finally. We have about 6 clumps this year, and last year we had about 60 - no exaggeration! This is a much more manageable amount for us and I don't feel as though I'm growing it for compost only. We do have family friends who love this veggie, and I have no doubt that we will be able to share some with them - don't worry! It may be in the fall however, since we will be replanting this in the near future and maybe it will come up more abundantly then. This bunch will be steamed to go with a shrimp/pineapple Teriyaki we're having tonight. The recipe and picture will be on the recipe page. Click here to see them.

We had wonderful Father's Day weekend with our girl. Part of her gift to her dad was being an extra pair of hands in the garden this weekend. Her reward was a happy daddy, and a bag of both spinach and lettuce to take back to her apartment. Next time she comes home we will hopefully have more to share. Dad and daughter dealt with a lot of weeds, and put down quite a bit more hay mulch. Just in time too, since it's hotter than a firecracker this week. There are heat advisories in some parts of the state where my relatives live, so I will assume they're taking precautions. Better heat than tornadoes, I suppose!

Here's a shot of how the garden looks overall. The table on the deck here is holding our herb collection for this season and a few pots with new seedlings. As you look at the garden, you can make out lots of bushy potato plants on the left side, and vigorous tomato plants on the right side. No close up shots for now, since there are a "few" weeds to be wrangled! Never ends. However, the fact that I can pop out there with a pair of scissors and a bowl, and come back in with the freshest possible produce, full of vitamins and minerals, minus the chemicals - worth it, worth it, worth it.

Finally, this picture is a testament to the riches of compost. This is a shot inside of the second compartment to our compost bin near the garden. It's the section that is not fresh veggie waste from the kitchen, but not quite broken down enough to use as soil enrichment. What you see here are myriads of little tomato plants that have come up from the waste that was thrown in here last summer! It always makes us chuckle to see the volunteers that come up all alone, since we put so much work into seed saving, and starting seedlings, and protecting them from the harsh weather, and keeping the bugs off of them. But out here, in the waste bin, are perfectly healthy plants that took care of business all on their own! I think the joke's on us!

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