What's going on in my garden in August?

Steemit Community Garden Journal Challenge: August 2018

01 Aug Garden.JPG

So here in the southern hemisphere August is all about enriching the garden in preparation for spring planting! Today my family and I borrowed a truck and went to get A LOT of gorgeous compost - I couldn't wait to get started and get my feet stuck into that rich soft soil!

10 Aug Garden.jpg

My wonderful husband helped me offload the compost and wheel it to the lawn and beds where I raked it evenly across the lawn and into the beds. Hubby then put a bit extra into the flower beds and vegetable garden beds.

My Potager Garden

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This is my little "potager garden" (potager = french word for an ornamental kitchen garden). I decided to make it into a mandala type shape because I believe everything that is functional can also be beautiful. Also, when I wash the dishes I look out to this garden and it makes the chore a tiny bit more pleasant to look at this. This little potager is mainly for herbs and salad vegetables.

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This little kitchen garden has sadly been a bit neglected this winter (I go into hibernation mode), and yet it seems to have self-seeded a bit from last season. These tomatoes came up on their own and still seem to be going - ready with lots of little flowers on the plant

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Tomato blossoms

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A few butter lettuce and broccoli plants have also popped up from last season so it can't have been too neglected

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I read in one of my gardening books that planting a light ground cover in the beds significantly help with water retention so my eldest son and I sowed some Dichondra seeds late last month but for some reason they only coming up against the edging - anyone have any idea what we are doing wrong?

Disease?

12 Aug Garden.JPG

I'm not sure what is going on with this broccoli plant - I thought it would survive the winter and be yielding broccoli by now but perhaps it was a bit too cold this winter? Any ideas?

Seedlings

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One of the grocery stores here in South Africa had a great promotion recently: for every R150 (about $10) you spend, you get a seedling kit which includes a little compressed soil-pod, seeds, a little recycled paper box to plant it in and a little sign to pop into it. The kids loved the activity of planting them and have really enjoyed nurturing them and watching them grow a little more each day.

Kids love getting involved

11 Aug Garden.JPG

My youngest just loved the truck with compost today, finding all the big sand clods, loading them in his monster truck and delivering them to the garden.

Gardening has become a regular activity with the kids this month and it's great because it gets them outside, gives them sensory engagement and it's an excellent teamwork activity that builds the bonds of our relationships even stronger!


Thanks @simplymike for this awesome community gardening challenge! I look forward to keeping it up for the rest of the year - it's going to be awesome to watch my garden evolve!

If anyone else is interested in joining this challenge please check out this post: SteemIt Community Garden Journal Challenge 4 - August

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Hahahaha! Well when this newbie figures out what she’s doing, she’ll post an education post 😁 Thanks for your support! #teamsouthafrica is an awesome community!

Certainly a wonderful way to encourage teamwork and great to see that you keep your children active outdoors! Blessings! @wildwanderer

Thanks! Ya the little ones need it! I’m so glad the weather is warming up!

Nothing like getting a little dirty in the garden :D
Good luck with all the little seedlings :) And enjoy the delicious veggies when the right time comes.

Thanks we definitely will! I’m so excited for spring!


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Oooooh thank you!

I love to see people jumping onboard with @simplymike's gardening journal :) Loved seeing yours @wildwanderer, especially kids + dirt together :)

Thank you! Kids in the dirt - so good for them!!! I’m actually writing a post about that - should be up soon - so many kids don’t get down and dirty nowadays and it can be bad for their development... thanks again for your comment - I really enjoy interacting!

I grew up on a farm @wildwanderer, so you are preaching to the choir haha

Hahaha! Awesome:D

I decided to make it into a mandala type shape because I believe everything that is functional can also be beautiful.

I believe in this very much

Life is just better when it’s also beautiful <3

Ah, I love dirty feet in the earth. Too cold right now to do that here - boots for me!

It will be spring soon <3 when does it start warming up over there? Victoria is quite far south though hey?

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Wow! Thank you so much! That really boosted me!!

The portager garden looks really great, the tomatoes look fresh and healthy. I love the blossoms.

Your kids getting involved must be fun, it always great to see kids interested in these things.

Thank you! I’m excited to make the potager even more beautiful - I’m thinking it needs some edible flowers like nasturtiums and pansies! <3
My boys are still little (3&5) and it’s really special sharing these interests with them <3

Adding edible flowers will be great! Go for it!!

I can only imagine... Special moments like these are what add extra beauty to life. You should enjoy it. Special moments like these are what add extra beauty to life. You should enjoy it.

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What a lovely post. Great to see you received such wonderful support!
As for some tips, I can only give you advice that'll likely destroy your garden, lol.

Hahahaha! Well when this newbie figures out what she’s doing, she’ll post an education post 😁 Thanks for your support! #teamsouthafrica is an awesome community!

Ahhh, thanks on both fronts. It's very kind of you.

Your garden looks so beautiful i love the mandala shape it looks very pretty. And beautiful photos:) maybe not the very first one:Dloool

LOL! It had to be the first one - I’m such a weirdo - I couldn’t wait to get my feet into it ;D Thanks for your support <3

Thanks for your update, @wildwanderer. And congrars on the Curie vote. Really well-deserved.

I love seeing people preparing for spring. It also makes me a bit sad to realize that over here, fall is just around the corner. :-s

I love your mandale shaped potager garden. It looks a bit like the bigger version of our herb spiral.

I don't know about your broccoli, I am not such an expert on diseases, but it looks a little like what was going on with my chayote plant. That one was suffering from spider mite. Maybe it is worth looking it up.

I would love to go to that grocery store and get such a seedling kit - I would probably do all my shopping there, so I'd get the entire collection... twice, lol.

Thanks! I originally thought of doing a herb spiral but I had more space so I spent ages designing this but I have to admit it was hard work!
Good luck for your changing of seasons! It must get cold in Belgium?
I vaguely inspected my broccoli but couldn’t find the spider mites - apparently they are really small though so I will take a closer look tomorrow.. thanks for sharing your experience with your chayote!
Yeah I think a lot of people did extra shopping there while they were running that promo (myself included) :)

It might have been hard work, but the result is definitely there. It will look stunning.

We have quite moderate winters here in Belgium, with an average temp around 0 to 2°C during winter. Which is more than cold enough for me, lol. And too cold to actually grow something outside.
So I'll have to move most of my perennials inside the house by the end of October or so - I still have no clue where I am going to put everything, but I'll surely find a way :0)

Wow that is pretty cold! I really should stop complaining about our winters! Our average winter day here in Johannesburg is about 18C max and min of about 3-5C so at least our days are warm :) sometimes we get frost that kills things a bit if you don’t cover them.
Good luck with finding space for everything! Looks like you might need a shed or greenhouse :D

Fortunately I have a pretty large downstairs level, so I guess it will work.

18°C, that's what we have on a cold summer's day (except for this year, of course. This year we had higher than normal temperatures, like everywhere else in the world, lol)

Oooh I don’t know how you survive that.. although our summers can get pretty sweltering sometimes! Our heatwaves push 40C which is rather uncomfortable but I still prefer the heat to the cold.. my favourite weather is autumn and spring because it’s warm but not killer hot/cold.. at least we get rain in summer to cool us off :D
At least bringing your plants indoors should make your winter more bearable :)

I love your potager garden, lovely to teach the little ones the joys of teamwork and gardening :)

Thank you! From when I discovered potagers I’ve been dreaming up a design.. it’s not nearly where I want it to be but we’ll get there :)

Nothing nicer than sharing the gardening with children, get down and dirty, very therapeutic @wildwanderer

It really is therapeutic! Thanks for the support 💖

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Such fun! I would love to have my own backyard someday, my husband has a stronger green fingers than I do, we rent a place with a small balcony where we have some small plants. We're excited that our fig plant has recently started to bear fruit!

Oh wow that’s awesome! We have our fig (more like twig) potted too - I’m really hoping it turns into a good fruit bearing tree!
A lot of people do really well with container gardening! You should post about it in @simplymike’s challenge next month 🤗
Enjoy your figs!! Yum!

Very good gardening project and post! Makes me feel to do some more in my garden :-) you have my up! At most i like the picture n.7. With the lovely green plants.

Thank you very much! We finished up raking the compost into the lawn today and cleaning up the beds but man are we exhausted! And stiff! Who knew gardening was a full body workout?!

Wow, I never knew tomato blossoms looked like that! It must be really enjoyable. How did the current draught affect the plantation though?

Greetings from Cape Town :)

Most vege blossoms can be quite pretty :) The drought hasn’t affected us that much here in JHB - we had decent rain last season (it is our dry season now but it’s been good).

Thank you very much! We finished up raking the compost into the lawn today and cleaning up the beds but man are we exhausted! And stiff! Who knew gardening was a full body workout?!

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I am waiting in anticipation to see the step by step progress! Great start to spring :)

I’m so excited for spring!! <3

I love your garden! It is so beautiful. That must have been a lot of work building it up with the posts. But worth the work. Thinking you have a bit of a hill to work with to be able to have different layers? I think you made the most with the space you have. It's brilliant!

Thank you!!! Yeah it was heaps of work - there is a bit of a hill as we are at the base of a mountain,which also makes the earth here very rocky so digging up to make those beds was more like mining :D and the clayish soil was very unsuitable for veges so we’ve had to add plenty compost to improve the soil..

Now that is dedication! How long did it take to do all that? I imagine with all that work it must have been even more difficult with the little one too?

Yeah it took ages! I need my hubby to help a lot (he could only help on weekends) and I would spend a lot of naptimes doing some digging during the weeks but it took a while before it was all done - slowly built it up and it’s not even fully where I want it to be yet.. maybe later this summer I will make a post of its progress and dig up all my old photos of it turning into something beautiful 💖

It looks like you've got things going well getting prepared for next year. A question on the Dichondra seeds, did you by chance have a couple heavy rains after you sewed the seeds? I had a similar issue with some lettuce and greens I sewed in a raised bed. We had a heavy rain and most of the seeds floated out of the ground and collected along the sides. It looked like I had just planted them for a garden border, lol.
All the hard work will pay off, and passing it on to the next generation is awesome.

Thanks for your feedback! We didn't have heavy rains but maybe the sprinkler caused the same problem? Also, maybe I didn't cover it with enough compost.. It's supposed to be shallowly sown but maybe it was too shallow now that you mention it.. Floating seeds :D heehee I will pin them down next time :P
I must say, a lettuce / greens border doesn't sound like a bad idea! :)

You are right to go very shallow, those type of seeds need to be about 1/8 inch deep. I sew them then gently rake the soil around, then I have a weighted roller that I use to compact the soil. It works pretty well but the raised beds held the water more than an open field would, plus the raised beds had a lot loser composted soil. (the roller is actually made for installing glue down floors weighs about 30lbs)
The lettuce border would not have been bad but it came in too thick for it to grow well and in the middle there were 6 or 8 plants. I ended up putting several tomatoes in the middle so it worked out. It's one of the great things about gardening learning to improvise.

Haha! Yeah I’m learning to let go of control with Mother Nature :D thanks for the tips! I didn’t think of rolling the soil to press the seeds down :)

😅 Learned that trick from my grandfather, he and done it that way for 40 or 50 years. Have a great day.

Ah! The golden oldies :)

Ooh! I love your little potager garden! I agree about having something pretty to look at while doing dishes. We have trees and the kids play area in front of my window and I love it.

That is great! I need more trees in my garden! It's just so small and surrounded by walls I have to be careful of with invasive root systems... ((dreams of bigger plot of land)) ;)

@wildwanderer Ah yes, those root systems can be such a pain! Can't wait for you to have more space to expand. Sending you positive vibes! ❤️

I love your potager garden. I am watching our garden recover now we've had rain. Hopefully the drought has broken!

I’m so glad you guys are starting to get rain down there!