Today I spent an hour and a half in the garden weeding and harvesting peas and lettuce. I will have to do more weeding this year because I am not using hay to mulch. I am trying to get rid of the pill bugs that wreak havoc on my tender seedlings and my berries. They like decaying vegetation, and I tend to find them on the underside of the hay. My idea is to deprive them of their food source and their living space. So, I will need to stay on top of the weeds before they take over. I have high hopes that my three winter squash plants will help cover the entire plot, giving the weeds no chance. Fingers crossed.
First peas, first strawberries, first garlic scapes. Much more to come. Lettuce is winding down after our five day-heatwave. Plus a few sprigs of mint. Big salad for dinner tonight.
We are having a heat wave here in Boston this weekend. It is supposed to last three days, and I decided to pull all the lettuce on my porch this morning. I had underplanted the lettuce in two containers with glass gem corn, and all eight seeds germinated. One of the containers (not pictured) currently only has four corn seedlings, and the bigger one (pictured here) was replanted with pickling cucumber today. Hopefully the cucumber and the corn will get along.
Today, I planted the remaining seedlings. I meant to do it last weekend (Memorial Day Weekend), but it was so rainy and cold (in the 40s at night) that it seemed wise to wait. In order to make space, I had to take out most of the walking onions and six humongous leeks. I planted 2 eggplants (Fairy Tale and Ping Tung), 1 pepper (the mystery one), 1 more tomato (Striped Roman), 3 kale seedlings, 3 Swiss chard plugs, 3 cucumbers (pickling, Dekah and Tokiwa), 3 winter squash (Butternut, Delicata and Lakota), 1 zucchini and 1 watermelon. I also interplanted the tomatoes with marigold, planted camomile and sowed glass gem corn among the squash and Zinnias with the Swiss chard. I don’t think I can fit anything else in my plot.
The only thing not in the ground yet are green beans. I will plant some with the corn and squash once the corn has a good height and will plant a lot of beans after I harvest the garlic. Last year, I planted beans late in July and it was very successful.
I went to the garden today to “velcro” the tomatoes. One of the plants (Striped Roman) looked very sad. It was already a bit droopy when I planted it yesterday. Hopefully it will recover. If not, I have one extra seedling (Poll Robson Angolan).
I also sowed Zinnias and sunflowers. Looking forward to a ton of flowers this year. Fingers crossed.
It has been (and will be) really warm these days and I could not wait any longer and planted my porch containers today: hot peppers (Early Jalapeno and Thai), Thai basil, Green Zebra tomato (with the parsley, and I am planning on using string to trellis it), Fairy Tale eggplant. I had fertilized the soil a few days ago.
Yesterday I harvested my porch radishes (they were sharing a big pot with lettuce seedlings) and my two grow bags of arugula. The arugula is super spicy and flavorful. (as are the radishes). It is starting to get warm now and I noticed signs of the arugula bolting. I used the radishes as an accompaniment to Eggs Florentine for breakfast and the arugula went into a little salad. Yum!
I spent a few hours in the garden today, weeding, spreading manure and planting. I sowed a few more peas (to fill in the gaps), rainbow carrots and beets (Chiogga and Burpee Golden). I also planted lettuce mix, head lettuce, flat leaf parsley, one curly kale plant and some Bok choi. (The Bok choi and lettuce mix came from Neighborhood Farm).
The overwintered leeks are looking nice and strong. I will pull them in the next few weeks. The arugula and spring greens and overwintered lettuces are looking good as well. And I have peas this year! So far they have not been destroyed by rabbits or birds.
I lost a few seedlings yesterday: lettuce, all Zinnias, all Genovese basil, all cilantro, all but one Thai basil, all Dr. Wyche’s Yellow tomatoes (my favorites, sigh) and one Break O’Day tomato.
Currently, my seedlings are either under the grow lights (2 butternut quash, 2 Delicata squash, 3 Pickling cucumbers, 3 Dekah cucumbers, 3 Tokiwa cucumbers, 3 watermelon, 1 lettuce, 1 mystery pepper, 1 Thai basil, and some very mangled cilantro) or are in bigger pots and grow next to the window or under regular table lights in the evening (1 Darkibor kale, 2 Fairy Tale eggplant, 1 Ping Tung eggplant, 1 Thai basil, 1 parsley, 3 Green Zebra tomatoes, 1 Break O’Day tomato, 2 Paul Robson (?) tomatoes and 2 Baker’s Creek Family Heirloom tomatoes).
I will supplement the loss with seedlings from the Neighborhood Farm and/or the Trustees. I will get basil, cilantro, flowers and a couple of heirloom tomatoes. Lettuce is growing on the back porch, so I will just transplant a few of the larger heads into the garden.
This afternoon, I repotted the remaining tomatoes (Green Zebra, Paul Robson, Break o’ Day – Dr. Wychee is still in its seed trays) and eggplant (Pint Tung and Fairy Tale), peppers (the gifted mystery pepper), cilantro, parsley, kale and Zinnias. I also started new seedlings: cucumbers (Tokiwa, Dekah and National Pickling), winter squash (Waltham Butternut and Honeyboat Delicata) and a watermelon (Sugarbaby, an heirloom variety). I started three each for the cukes and the watermelon and two each for the winter squash. I just realized that I have not started any summer squash yet. But as, with my daughter away for college over the summer, I am currently the only one in our family who will eat Zucchini, I might want to rethink planting them. Still, one plant would be nice.