Monday, July 6, 2009

Vegetable Garden Update

My veggie seeds have been in the ground for just over a month now, so I figure it's time for a progress report. First of all, I must say how proud I am of my little garden this year! Sure, there are weeds, and sure, there are failures, but all-in-all, this year is looking very promising.

Below is a view of pretty much everything. On the bottom left, we have a few varieties of tomatoes, all started indoors in February (or traded for neighbors' seedlings). Beyond the tomatoes, there are 6 yellow banana pepper plants (I really want a big harvest to make this amazing relish). These guys are still pretty short, but their color has improved to a deeper green and they've produced many more leaves. Behind them are the purple pole beans, two zucchini plants, then on the right I have 6 cucumber hills, 4 rows of basil, 4 rows of carrots, garlic, and then lettuce (not shown).

There seems to be a colony of red ants hanging out near the purple pole beans. I don't know if they are the culprits behind these bite holes, or if their presence indicates that they are using aphids as slaves (at least I've heard that can happen), but either way, the poor beans are pretty sad looking!

I have had some problems with critters this year. One day, I was gazing out my bedroom window at the garden when I noticed a squirrel and two birds enjoying a feast! This was shortly after my seeds began to sprout, and I could see them digging around and having a great old time. Without even thinking, I yelled "Go away!", and poor Baby, playing at my feet, burst into tears. Once I reassured her that I wasn't yelling at her, those evil thieves were gone. However, my basil is basically nonexistant, aside from a few (and out of four entire rows of seeds, I literally mean "a few") tiny sprouts. My carrots and lettuce have huge gaps in their rows where someone ate the seeds. Grrrrrr.

The lettuce and mesclun were planted in L-shaped rows in the shadiest corner. I also dropped a handful of seeds right next to the stepping stone. We've already enjoyed a couple salads from these guys.

Here is a close-up of the larger zucchini with a cucumber plant in the foreground.

A volunteer cilantro plant.
My lovely garlic seems about ready to be harvested. Can anyone tell me if they look ready? I've read different things; the leaves will fall over, the leaves will turn 1/3 brown, the leaves will corkscrew. I suppose I should just dig up one and see what I find.

Everything green in this picture is a raspberry bush, except for the day lily on the bottom left and the peony above it.

My sugar snap peas. These are the coolest plants! Their little sticky fingers are holding tight to that trellis. There are a few little flowers but no peas yet.
Here is a shot of the entire sugar snap pea area. I'm a bit embarrassed about this one because there are supposedly three clematis flowers. The one in the middle and on the right are alive, but not really going anywhere. Also, see all that grass at ground level? I planted a bunch of chive seeds in here, but I can't tell the chives apart from the grass. I guess I'll just wait and see which ones grow purple flowers at the end of the season. This garden bed is also overrun by a mystery herb planted by the previous owners. It is very fragrant but we just can't figure it out.

Remember my pathetic little tomato seedlings I started in February? I am really glad that I didn't give up on them when it came time to transplant. I wanted one jelly bean and one yellow pear tomato plant near the back door so that I could snack on them without making the long journey across the yard to the veggie garden.

I love these long summer days. I put Baby down to bed around 6:30 and then have at least an hour and a half before it gets dark if I feel like working in the garden. We have been blessed with TONS of rain this year, so I've only had to drag out the hose a few times. There is just something satisfying about watching those fat zucchini leaves soaking in the sun or counting the yellow tomato flowers.

For beginning Colorado gardeners, I highly recommend the book "The Zen of Gardening in the High and Arid West" by David Wann. He runs a community garden in Golden, Colorado, and his passion for gardening is contagious. To my Colorado friends: I would love to hear about your gardens! Have you harvested anything delicious yet?


  1. That is so funny that poor little baby cried when you yelled at the garden pests! I laughed so hard :)
    Your garden is looking good! It's so fun to see your work pay off. I was just thinking I need to put another garden update on my blog too. Maybe in a few days.

  2. Hey! I love your blog! Your garden is great! I just trashed mine. Plants hate me. Baby is adorable as usual.

  3. I am so impressed with your garden! Way to go, Beast!