I Began Gardening Because of STEEM!
Inspired in part by the STEEM community, I began reclaiming lawn space, building raised boxes, and blogging about my adventures in gardening. This might be year #5 of the ever-growing garden that officially launches this weekend every year.
I remember to take a pano to compare progress, and take a look at a few of the growings on.
Here is the wide angle shot from a couple weeks ago. Reasonable late June growth and just about everything looks on its way to producing food and flowers.
Fast forward a couple of weeks and BAM! Flowers are popping, greens are filling out, tomatoes have gone bonkers and foliage is starting to spill out of the raised boxes now that July has hit. I fertilized a week or so ago and we have had the goofiest flip flop between big rain and hot sun which the garden apparently loves.
What I have come to enjoy very much with the garden is how early the blooms pop, how some take a while to develop, and how some arrive late in the summer after a few months of growth. It is like the early ones have passed the baton to these lilies and hydrangeas.
I even have a couple patches of roses that my better half doesn't like so much because of the thorns. Not my favourite either but they do add a touch of colour and are good for the butterflies and bees.
It seem every year that I plant fewer tomato plants in an effort to space them out and give them room to grow. It also seems that annually I am responsible for tomatogeddon and this year is no different.
This mass is comprised of Early Girls, Big Beef, Beefsteak, Roma and cherry tomatoes. The 2 reaching the top of the fence are the cherry tomatoes which I wisely planted along the back, and built trellises out of the dried grass grown last year. I am not certain they are supposed to be 7 feet high but I am REALLY looking forward to when they start spitting out the fruit. We have designs on combining them with our bountiful basil and some bocconcini for a fresh snack!
Holding back the leaves a little, we discover that there are dozens of tomatoes growing and they look like the first ones may be ready in a week or 2. They really do love the rain!
The second wave of strawberries is showing some ripe and plump berries that are good enough to eat. I am told they taste way better than the ones you buy at the store and I would hope so! So far, this has been the fastest producing and easiest to grow crop we have tried.
In contrast to last year, the battalion of raspberry bushes look like they will produce this year. The bushes have multiplied to the point where I know I will have to thin them out next year. Everywhere you look, there are bunches of a dozen or more berries growing and they have ripened to eating status in the last week.
With the bumper crop I am anticipating, many will be eaten fresh and the surplus will go into the freezer bag so we can try out hand at making jam! Perhaps with the strawberries, and any blackberries we get this first year of growing them.
Another newcomer this year to please the ladies is zucchini. Yellow Italian Squash to be specific but man can these things produce big leaves! They are the size of a large dinner plate and I have had to prune them regularly so they don't put that section of the garden in perpetual shade.
When you trim back the leaves, you can see we already have a couple of them growing nicely! We have already harvested one and used it in a couple meals. You have to pick them small otherwise they get big, dry and seedy. I will make sure to grow one to full size for fun and to harvest seeds for next year.
Greens & Beans
This mass of green is the hot pepper box. We are already pulling jalapenos and Hungarian banana peppers out and this is just the beginning. There are dozens of chilis growing but I won't pick any 'til they start showing signs of red. Habaneros and the hot as death peppers have flowered and have cute little sprouts but are a ways off of harvesting the first one.
This unkempt mess is comprised of carrots and about a dozen varieties of lettuces and greens. We are visiting each meal and picking more than enough for a big salad but are still precariously close to losing the battle. I have to get the chicks to up their harvesting game and I will find people happy to be gifted some fresh greens for a salad of their own. We will probably be able to supply the neighbourhood.
A few pickles and cucumbers have survived the birds and started climbing the ladders I built for them. If it works out as planned, I will have a few dozen pickles to ferment with my friend @sequentialvibe and plenty of fresh cucumbers to slice into salads and sandwiches.
Snap Peas are starting to climb and wind their way up the stakes. I haven't had too much luck with them in the past so we will see how I do with them in this location.
The green beans are having no such trouble and have crawled to the top of the fence they did so well on last year. We will be weaving them back through to our side of the fence this year so that we don't have to harvest half of them from the neighbour's property. So glad to have had the revelation last year to ferment/pickle them with hot peppers so we can have zesty snacks all winter again.
Speaking of rain, here it comes again so I better cut this update short and head indoors before I get soaked. The plants will have their shower again and the rain barrel will be full to overflowing for waterings for days to come. Amazing how much more you appreciate rain in the summer when you have a garden to grow and a Hive fam with whom to share it.
Mom started me along my path of growing stuff when I was a kid. Motivated by so many blockchain blogging gardeners, I figured I would plant and share and learn as I reclaim as much grass space as I can. It has turned out to be a fruitful experience and I hope to inspire others to sow and grow no matter what your location or experience level is.