Saturday, December 6, 2008

Garden Challenge

Just a quick garden update - this is my first year having a 'proper' vege garden and I think it will be useful for me to have some notes recorded for this time next year when I have another go!

So far, things are going pretty well if I do say so myself!! A few things haven't gone so great but others have, so like I expected its a bit of mixed results.

I have challenged myself to eat *something* from the garden every day. I've managed a few 'meals' based on food we've grown (mainly salads and brocolli stirfrys) and lots of 'snacks'. I also have herbs and lemons for those days I need to cheat my challenge!
Today we enjoyed our first handful of these....
Strawberries - 1st cropYummy

So how does my garden grow?

The Good....

The brocolli are all gone now. YUMMY!! Nice big heads. A couple of plants still in the ground growing secondary shoots. One big head went to waste - note to self, keep an eye on them a bit more closely, and maybe freeze some if I can't face yet another night in a row of brocolli for dinner (they all were ready at the same time). Would definitely try these again.

Cos Lettuces in plastic tubs out the front did marvellously. One left now. Interestingly a couple that didnt fit in the tray and went in the main garden still look like seedlings.

Have replanted the trays with cucumber seedlings. One capsicum plant is out there too, will be interesting to see if that fruits or not.

6 or so tomato plants I planted into cheap plastic buckets are big and tall and flowering. These are also out the front which is obviously the best spot ever for growing food. Hopefully not too much longer till we see some little tomatoes!

Strawberrries in the wine barrel planter in this area are also doing well as is the lemon mint which I need to trim back. Little birds (or little fingers) have been getting the strawberries so I need to get some mesh ASAP and some pea straw for the fruit thats not hanging over the edge of the barrel (otherwise they get wet and go mouldy)

Strawberries in the main patch also flowering and fruiting ...yum!

Parsley went mad and I had heaps and made some parsley pesto using these recipes here and here. I pulled out the 2 biggest plants that were going to seed and gave away another 2 plants. 2 left which I will let go to seed and hopefully get a new crop.

Peas also doing well. Have eaten a handful of sugar snap peas. The snow peas are just about to flower. I ended up staking them because there is stray convolvulus in that part of the garden and its easier to see and destroy it now the pea plants are up.

I have one zucchini plant (just to try it this year) that is doing really well and I spy some zuchini there too!

Rosemary and Pizza Oregano also doing well.

THe Marigolds I planted randomly through the garden are also flowering, not sure whether they do keep the bugs down or not but they do look pretty!

Worm Farm - I was a bit worried it might be dead but I've had a good dig around and there are lots of healthy looking worms right up near the food. Yay! I need to dig out some vermicast and put another batch of worm tea on the garden.

Compost - probably needs a good dig over.

Jury is still out...

Seedlings in the main garden - lettuces, beans, broad beans , a squash or two and cucumbers. A few stray potatoes from previous garden owners I missed when I dug it over. Hopefully a meal or 2 on whats in there.
I also planted baby carrot seeds straight in the ground but have yet to see anything appear.
2nd crop of sunflower seedlings need to get in a safer spot (my first seedlings disappeared ...child hands?). There are quite a few 'random' seedlings too. Lesson learnt, don't forget to label label label!!

Not so good...

Radishes. Silly me moved the seedlings and then read they dont like to be disturbed. So only a handful got to eating size. I am the only one in the family who likes them anyway. I might do another mini crop once the brocolli are all out just for me to munch.
Spinach. My first crop did well but the 2nd I planted too close to the edge of the garden. Its a bit shady and they are pretty much dead I think. Might get some more seedlings.
Lettuce from seed. Nope.
Coriander. I grew some inside which did really well, then I transplanted it outside where it promptly sulked and bolted! The next lot I had inside got infested with aphids so we currently don't have any to eat. I left the one outside to go to seed and hope it might give me some more plants. Need to get some more.
Mint. Was in the garden when we moved in but is a very large and healthy plant threatening to take over the whole plot. I offered it up on Freecycle and someone came and removed half of it and left me a big planter pot (thank you!!) to repot the rest (and bury the pot in the garden). Need to get on to that this weekend.

And I think thats everything!


Rose Red said...

Wow! I think all of that sounds amazing! Am (sort of) looking forward to planting some foodstuffs in my new garden!

Heart Felt said...

Your garden sounds amazing! Well done, it's quite exciting eating your own produce. Beautiful photographs. xx

At Home Mommy Knits said...

Your garden sounds wonderful! I always had one growing up and I love having one here. Since we are now buried in winter I'm so envious of you and your fresh veggies :).

kv said...

what a lovely garden it must be!!!! here we are bracing for the inevitable snow and only dreaming of next year's veggies....

Mariella said...

just about everyone must have mint growing "wild" in their garden!
Apparently you can make mint jelly, haven't tried it myself but we've been talking about it at home.