Garden Update

The garden has been fabulous this year due to the rain and record low temperatures.   The Hubs and I have often mused about finding a place to live in our dotage where temperatures are mild, nothing higher than 85 and nothing lower than 60.   Think we may have found that place here.  🙂   (But, it is Oklahoma so the weather can change in a heartbeat.)

Although we don’t have a huge variety of vegetables in the garden, almost everything we have planted has done spectacular.  Today I just wanted to share what’s been going on with our growing.

I’ll start with something fun.   You might remember my giant blue hobbit feet I bought on a trip to Iowa last July.   I finally got them moved to a flower bed and planted.PicMonkey Collage

I found this awesome specimen of Hen and Chicks at a local nursery.   I wish I knew the variety because it is a beautiful bloomer.

We plant an over abundance of tomato plants every year.  In fact, we always over plant.  If we are lucky, we pick a handful of cherry tomatoes and maybe one slicer.   Well this year (even though we dialed back our plantings just a bit), the tomato plants have gone gangbusters!   Even with whatever critter is chomping on them (which I now think is a skunk), we are picking at least a colander full most every day.2014-08-02 09.37.42

The cucumbers are going nuts, too.   These are The Hubs’ favorite.  According to his mom, she would always let the kids pick a treat upon the end of grocery shopping.   His sister would always grab a candy bar. The Hubs would ask for a cucumber.   It is nothing to see him come home from work, peel a cucumber and eat it whole. There have been lots of pickling and cucumber salads in our lives this summer.   I love it.

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Besides cukes and ‘maters, the peppers have been doing decent, too.   I’ve canned quite a lot of pepper jelly.

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I harvested a few onions, both red and white.   Nothing really huge, but it has kept me (for a while) from buying any.

I was a little late on the garlic harvest this year and the bulbs started to break up.   I hope they will last storing through the winter.

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I got one sweet potato to live, i.e. the gophers didn’t eat it off.

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I planted lots of different varieties of sunflowers for the pollinators and the birds.

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I love the mammoth ones.

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We should harvest a few Honey Crisp apples soon.  This would be our first crop.
2014-06-27 09.07.12Our Red Haven peach tree got zapped by our late frost, but the White Haven still produced enough for jam and pie filling and one tart.

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“Do I dare to eat a peach?” (T.S. Eliot from “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”)

Well, these gross beetles didn’t mind if they did.

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If anyone knows what these pests are, please leave a comment.

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They created huge clusters of sucking pestilence and when you went to pick, they buzzed you.   Gross.   I am afraid they have migrated toward the grapes now.

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I got some free watermelon seeds and just planted them on a whim.  Worked out well, dontcha think?

2014-08-02 09.38.38I was determined to plant enough dill for the black swallow caterpillars this year.   I planted two rows so we could share.

The fig tree (which I have potted) produces just enough to nab one for breakfast every morning when I water the patio plants.

2014-08-02 09.52.16I just have to share the garden bog that The Hubs created for the bees.   It sets between our gardens.  It might not be the most beautiful water garden, but it serves its purpose and the bees love to land on the water hyacinth to drink.

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I love surprises in the garden and the cacti keep me amazed.   I don’t know if it because I do keep them hydrated, but they thank me with bloom after bloom in the summer.

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I think some people believe cacti do not need water.  I have found that they will reward you if you give them a splash every once in a while.

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(Again, if anyone can identify this kind of cactus, please leave me a comment.)

Finally, for another pleasant surprise, I can never remember exactly where I have planted my Naked Ladies (aka Surprise Lillies).   They always remind me where in late July.

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16 comments to Garden Update

  • Taking On Magazines

    I love your garden, Deb! The flowers are amazing and gorgeous, but the fruit and vegetables tug at my heart the most (I’m too practical for my own good). I’m with you husband on cucumbers. I munch on them raw, use them in salad, pickle them, pretty much inhale them any way I can get them. Regarding the beetles, those are Japanese beetles. The best way to deal with them (you’ll never get full control) is to go to Home Depot and get a Japanese beetle trap. It’s pretty much a bag that they can’t get out of once they get drawn in by some scent that’s in there. Good luck with them…they’re disgusting critters.

  • I love your garden!! So beautiful … and delicious. 🙂 The cactus blooms are gorgeous!

    • Thanks, Veronica. I just get so surprised when the cacti blooms. Have another one blooming now and one getting ready to bust out.

  • You did a great job with your garden. I love those figs..and that watermelon is just awesome!

  • Your garden is so full of life, please teach me how to have a green thumb 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

    • This is the best it’s looked in a lot of years, Uru, so I don’t know if I’m the one to teach you or not. It’s pretty hit or miss around here.

  • Liz

    Yup, those look like Japanese beetles! Read up on them as I’ve heard that the traps can attract many more to your yard than if you hadn’t put out a trap at all. I’m envious of all the marvelous crops you are harvesting this year!

  • wow – look at all of that garden produce and fruit! I’m envious! We’re just now getting the tomatoes to ripen. It was so hot in June here that nothing set. I’ve always wanted to plant onions and garlic and seeing your crop has inspired me. Now if we could just get rid of the bad bugs and keep the good bugs.

  • Those look like Japanese beetles to me too.
    You really have the best collection in your garden: tomatoes, cucumbers, onions and garlics. They are my must-have ingredients in the kitchen. I’m now waiting for my cherry tomatoes to ripe. Can’t wait to use them in my summer dishes 🙂

  • wow! This is one beautiful garden! I especially loved the pretty tomatoes. The sunflowers are wonderful and all the garlic – lucky girl!