May 13 2009

Garden Update: May 13

These pictures are from a few days ago, but things haven’t changed too much.  The garden is going great overall; I’m really proud of how well we’re staying ahead of the weeds and thinning.  Usually I don’t thin things nearly enough and they kind of choke each other out, and then when I finally thin them it’s too hard on the ones that are left behind.  This year I tried to be brutal about it right from the start, and it’s paying off.  (The real test comes when it’s 100 degrees in July, and new weeds are still coming up.)

It looks like we’ll be having a community garden plot too, but we don’t have anything planted there yet, so I’ll get pics of that when we do.

West Garden Bed

West Garden Bed

The turnip and radish tops have gotten huge.  Unfortunately, I don’t think the roots are keeping pace.  These are the German Giant radishes, and they aren’t nearly as big as I’ve gotten from them before, and the tops look ready to go to seed.  We didn’t have very good luck with the root crops last year either.  I’m wondering if our soil is too nitrogen-rich or low in something else, that’s causing the plants to put more energy into the greens and less into the roots.  Hmm, maybe this is the year to try eating turnip greens?

Green Beans

Green Beans

Here’s a closer look at the green beans, Blue Lake bush variety.  They only broke through the surface a week or so ago, so they’re growing fast.  We got nearly 100% germination, even with the year-old seed, so we may have to thin a few.  The garlic still looks very healthy in the background.

Peas and Lettuce

Peas and Lettuce

The peas were looking great, until one day it looked like something sat on them and nibbled away half the leaves.  I couldn’t see any signs that rabbits had gotten through the fence, and they hadn’t touched the lettuce, so we thought it might be birds.  That’s why there’s wire over top of them now.  They seem to be recovering and growing new leaves, but they still look rough.

Next to them, all the early radishes have been harvested, so you can see the lettuce.  There are actually two rows there, but the row next to the peas didn’t come up well at all.  The lettuce seed was all 2-3 years old, so that’s always a gamble.  There’s plenty in the second row, though; it needs more thinning.

Carrots, Cabbage, and Swiss Chard

Carrots, Cabbage, and Swiss Chard

With the radishes gone, you can see the carrots now too.  They have some bunches that need further thinning.  Next to them are the cabbages; we must have 50 of those and won’t have room to keep more than a dozen at the most, so I’m trying to give most of them away before they get too big to transplant.  There’s also extra Swiss chard (the two rows on the right).  I’ve never transplanted that before, but I suppose you could.  We’ll probably be eating some of that within the next week or so.

Edible-podded Peas

Edible-podded Peas

These snap peas took a beating at the same time as the Little Marvels at the other end of the bed.  They’re putting on some blooms now, though, so I’m still hoping they do okay.

Chicken House - Step 1

Chicken House - Step 1

And here’s the chicken house I’ve been building.  Step 1: build a box.  It’s further along than this, but I’ll put more pictures and info up when it’s finished.  It has doors and windows and roosts now, but the roof is still just temporary canvas and plastic, and it needs wheels or something to make it mobile.  There are about a thousand chicken house plans on the web that look nice and small and simple, but they’re all for 2-3 chickens.  Eight chickens, like we have, need 32 square feet of house, so you can’t just do that with a few boards and some wire.  This is a serious chicken house.  It’ll all be worth it when we’re pulling 5-6 eggs a day out of it this fall, though.

If you enjoyed this article, why not rate it and share it with your friends on Twitter, Facebook, or StumbleUpon?

GD Star Rating
loading...

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Comment

*

WordPress Themes