Just thought I would share a gardening update with you, since I'm sure you've been at the edge of your seating waiting for this :-) Gardening is kind of my new addiction these days. I often times come home from a long day at work and just somehow end up in the yard weeding and watering until the sun goes down. I go back into the house almost refreshed. Weird, I know.
By no means am I an expert - just learning as I go - but I'm seeing results already so that's promising! Here's what's going on in the patch-o-dirt out back these days:
Oh my poor peas! The one thing that is usually a no brainer when it comes to gardening. Sheesh. My peas struggled from the start. First it was these little green bugs (probably aphids) then it was the birds. Every afternoon I'd walk out there to find these angled cuts out of the leaves. Not slug holes, but these really sharp cuts. After enough Google searching, I realized that the birds were gobbling up my tender pea shoots. F-ing birds. I netted the plants and they are bouncing back. I still have two more plantings to go so I suspect we'll end up with an OK harvest.
Also attacked by birds, my beans are now doing well with the addition of netting. I've got the Blue Lake variety on one side and let's just call them the Magic variety on the other. My Dad gave me the latter from a friend of his and boy they are amazing! They popped up out of the ground in no time and are growing like weeds. I have high hopes for the Magic beans and will most likely try and save some seeds for next year.
Regular beans at the top of the photo, magic beans on the bottom.
My lettuce is thriving (also a bird favorite and now netted) and I've harvested a few heads of Butter Lettuce so far. Kale, also a crop I heard is uber easy to grow did not fair well in the first and second plantings but I think I've got it the third time around. Spinach is starting to pop up too! I've got a few more plantings on the books so should have plenty of greenery for the summer salad season.
Beautiful butter lettuce!
Broccoli & Cauliflower
Not sure what I was thinking planting these, but I'll give 'em a go for a bit and see what happens. They also got gnawed on by the birds so also fall under the netting now.
Squashes & Such
I've had zero luck with eggplant so far - very much considering giving up on that and replacing them with something else. Zucchini are finally starting to grow a bit. Delicata and acorn squash are hanging in there too. I'm also trying to grow some starts (for like the 5th time!) since my seeds haven't really taken off in the garden. I made these cool circular cages for some of them so I hope to see plants winding their way up them soon!
Just put 6 different varieties in the ground last weekend. I should have probably stuck with 2 or 3 but it's so hard to resist 'em! Half are planted near the patio and the other in the garden. I'll be curious to see which grows better.
My first round of carrot planting went well and the stems are like 7 inches tall! I did not realize you needed to thin them until a work colleague pointed that out to me. I spent last night aborting half my lovely carrots. Guys, I felt horrible doing this! Luckily, my second and third plantings are tiny so I thinned them out too and didn't feel as bad since they hardly looked like a carrot. Lesson learned.
Poor, poor baby carrots :-(
My mom gave me all of my starts this year and so far, so good! I lost a few but the rest are taking off. I suspect we'll have a small, small harvest this year but I do plan on adding more plants down the road. Who wants to pay $5 a pint for them when you can just grow them in your backyard?! We also have a crazy amount of blackberry bushes in the back that have never been sprayed so we won't be short on berries this summer.
Well that's about it from my yard. How's your gardening going so far? What are your biggest lessons learned? Do tell!