Thursday, June 18, 2020

How Does My Garden Grow?

Slowly.  Very slowly.  I chalk it up to the fact that it's been cooler than usual this year.

I think this has also caused the germination of seeds planted directly in the garden to be troublesome.  (I'm replanting colored gourd seeds today.)  The blank spots are prevalent.  Once more, it's been the weather.

The good news is that our last two days have been . . . gulp . . . actually quite warm.  The thermometer has hit the high 70s and low 80s.  Even though we're still short on rainfall, these warm days have got to have given the little transplants and sprouting seeds a boost.

Even though I've been talking to the plants and sending encouraging words to planted seeds nearly every evening while watering with the hose, yesterday we decided we needed to hook up the sprinkler and gave the strawberries, asparagus and young dwarf fruit trees (and portions of the raised beds and field garden) a good, long drink.  The soil still looks damp this morning so it was worth it.

I made my first harvest of mint a day or so ago.  Prepped it for the dehydrator and ended up with 2-1/2 cups of dried mint for Papa Pea's daily dose of peppermint tea.

Both the yellow and green beans have not shown great germination.  I've gone back and filled in the bare spots with crossed fingers.  (Hard to plant seeds that way, but it warranted trying.)

One would think the cool weather would have encouraged more growth in the shell peas, but they still seem a bit vertically challenged.  The radishes, which we both love and munch-crunch even with breakfast, gave us a first large harvest over the past weekend. 

This is a peek at a few of the broccoli plants.  Doing okay, but not as vigorous as the cauliflower shown below.

So far, the cauliflower wins the blue ribbon of the whole garden as it seems to be flourishing.

My bed of spinach.  Ugh.  Poor germination with lots of bare spots.  I've since transplanted (well, tried) some of the plants that were too close together to fill in bare spots.

Can't complain (okay, whine) one little bitty-bit about the strawberries this year.  Despite lack of warmth, they've blossomed heavily and early.  We even have loads of green berries forming.

The haskap bushes are loaded with green, green berries the same color as the leaves.  Can you see them?  They will size up and turn a deep, dark blue when ripe.

My struggling blueberry bushes (a pox on that dreaded Witch's Broom fungus) go from hardly a blossom on some to a few loaded with blossoms.  The harvest can't turn out to be anything than smaller than we wish, but at least it looks as though we'll get some.

So that's a look at some of the garden and what's growing.  And what's been challenged this year.  Up here it seems we haven't really started the summer season quite yet (and we're going into the last half of June -- eeep), so if we continue to stay clear of those near freezing temps at night (it's about time, for goodness sake!), there's great hope we'll do okay once we get more good growing weather . . . and some adequate rain.


coffeeontheporchwithme said...

The plants that are doing well are really coming along! I, too, have seen poor germination. I just replanted some cucumber seeds yesterday. I think I'll have to do the same with peas. We had that cold snap after I had put in my garden and I think it messed things up. Potatoes are doing fine! Enjoy your tea! -Jenn

Goatldi said...

I went through the same dilemma this first year. Unlike you I had no reference to go from. Three strikes against me. New area , new planting method raised beds and even though roughly same elevation a whole different effect . Add to it first we had winter then we had spring then back to winter then summer then back to spring. Now warmer temps but cool nights. Enough to send one to the psychiatrist couch 🙃
But with the recent shot of warmer temps my plants are blooming away and setting fruit and veggies .

SmartAlex said...

Your cauliflower does look great! Mine is about five times larger than last year at the same time. And my peas took forever. I added up my rain chart last night. We only had four inches of rain in May (including snow melt) which isn't awful, but still below average. So far we've had less than half an inch in June and I'm about to do a rain dance.

Cockeyed Jo said...

Mama, Don't feel lonely. It's the same here. O;d Ma Nature can't decide what to do and our plants here in north GA are saying, " Make up your mind!" Our highs this week were in the low 70s instead of bordering on 100.

tpals said...

I need to go out and check on things after our morning rain. My peas are also slow and we've had plenty of heat; confusing.

Michelle said...

I'm planning a garden post ASAP ('possible' being the operative word ;-)

My bush beans are looking great; sugar pod peas so-so; poor germination on summer squash and cukes but your Red Kuri have almost all sprouted up!

Nancy @ Little Homestead In Boise said...

I hear you, we've had too much rain/cold weather too. Garden is slowing growing though. Chicks are finally going out this weekend!

Rosalea said...

Love seeing pictures of your garden's progress! Wow, on your cauliflower plants! Our weather has been up and down like a yo-yo, with snow mid-May, heat the end of May, then frost last weekend. (there was a lot of covering going on!!) Now we really need rain, but finally have some warmth for tomatoes, peppers and vine crops. I have a fledgling strawberry bed, and Haskaps on my bushes, and the broccoli plants that huddled under caps during the mid-May 3" of snow, are giving us heads now. Its a lot of work, but oh, so rewarding!

Mama Pea said...

Jenn - Hang in there and we may all get a good harvest. From most of our gardening efforts, anyway! Sure wish the weather would cooperate more though.

Goatldi - Oh, yes, the challenges of "learning" how to garden in a different place always throws one for a loop. Plus, don't expect it to be the same next year! (Not very encouraging, am I?) But you'll get it figured out without having to pay for psychiatric services, I'm sure!

SmartAlex - Yep, the lack of rain does a number on our gardens. Papa Pea and I just finished stacking those six cords of wood we had delivered two weeks and three days ago and commented that lying outside the shed on the ground it got rained on only once. Ugh.

Cockeyed Jo - Enjoy those temps below 100°. I know I sure would be. But it seems all over the country the weather and temperatures have been wonky so far this gardening season.

tpals - I don't think we'll ever manage to "figure out" the whys and wherefors of gardening. Try as we might, we just have to learn to roll with it.

Michelle - I had to wait to plant my Red Kuri seeds until just this week so they're a no-show so far, but I still have hopes for them. Great to hear you've had good germination with the ones I sent. :o)

Nancy - I know how really good it feels to get new chicks outside where they will be much happier, too. Happy chicks, happy chicks!

Rosalea - Wow, you win the prize for the most dramatic ups and downs of the weather! Snow mid-May would be a little discouraging, but sounds as those (with your help) crops are pulling through. It's all worth any and all work, isn't it? said...

We've have had rather cool temperatures around here also. This year sure has been different. Tomorrow we 're suppose to get temperatures in the eighties possibly in the nineties. Can't really count on what it's going to be. It's hard to tell now a days. I think your garden looks pretty good! A lot of work. Hopefully the plants will perk up. xo

Mama Pea said...

linnellnickerson - Thanks for the encouragement. A LOT of things are different these days, not just the weather and gardening! Today we have a temp right now at 3 o'clock of 68°, it's humid and muggy and BUGGY. Hard to get the urge to go out into the garden and do what needs to be done! :o\

Tigger said...

Is that deep mulch on some of the beds - what do you use? We used to find baby foxes sleeping in our deep mulched beds - much to Tigger's annoyance.

Mama Pea said...

Tipper - Most of the time, I use grass clippings for mulch especially in the raised beds. In more open areas of the field garden, I use old hay that we've had sitting outside, unprotected from the elements so that all the weed seeds have died. What a treat that must have been to find the baby foxes curled up on your deep mulch!

The Wykeham Observer said...

I'm having the same trouble. I planted some acorn squash and buttercup squash the same day. Acorn is still not up, but butternut up today. Oh well, I prefer the buttercup I guess. Pumpkins ok, but not the little miniature ones. The deer ripped off some tomato tops, but of course didn't eat them, so my first use of cayenne pepper on them is actually working. We'll see. Good luck. Every year is so different! Phil