Two posts in one day? I imagine you’re saying to yourself right now, “This guy must be crazy, thinking I have time to read all of his rambling blither!” I didn’t manage to take photos of the jam from that last post until tonight, because we were busy giving the Wonderpup’s haircut some much needed touching up, and after putting our second application of organic calcium-rich foliar spray on this evening, I realized it’d been over a week since I wrote about the garden, and we’re headed off to the flyover state where Panda comes from (as opposed to the flyover state that I come from that we’ve already visited twice this summer) this weekend, so I doubt there’ll be another garden update forthcoming until sometime around the middle of the month. So, here we go.
As you can see up there, things are still kicking pretty strong. The cucumbers on the right-hand side have even started to reach the top of their little tripod. I was looking back at pictures of the garden over the course of its life this spring (and now summer) before I started writing this, and it really is striking how much it’s changed. You can see a picture of it back when it was just a few spinach and arugula seedlings and a fresh dug bed over here.
Anyhow, probably the most exciting thing is that we’ve started harvesting non-leafy-green things! So far we’ve gotten one (huge) 15.25 ounce zucchini, close to 5 ounces of beans, and just over 6.5 ounces of carrots.
We’ve got another zucchini growing strong, and two that look iffy – kind of like the one that I thought had blossom-end rot. It might, in fact, still be that, or it might just be that some of the flowers aren’t getting pollinated, but the more I think about it, the more I think it might be the former. We’ll continue to monitor, in any case. Also, we spread some fertilizer around the base of a bunch of the plants, kinda hoping it would just leach into the soil over the next month or so. Over the last week it’s started to grow a white, fuzzy mold, but my (fingers crossed) theory on that is that it’s just a product of a warm, moist, nutrient rich environment, and not actually a sign of some kind of true problem. That it’s happening at all seems to add extra insult to the fact that we broke down and bought fertilizer (organic, but still). Maybe it’s just pride, but I think there’s a little bit of an ideological issue too. In any case, we’d really been hoping to make this work with as few outside inputs as possible (obviously a fair amount of our compost comes from the grocery store at the moment, but there’s got to be a reasonable limit somewhere.) There’s one more potential concern that requires some research, but I’ll get to that over the course of this week’s photo tour.
So that potential concern: one of our tomatoes finally started to turn red, and promptly developed a crack that exposes some of the interior flesh. You can see that turning-red tomato in the photo at left. Five minutes of searching, and about.com suggests that this is an issue of too much water(we’ve had some pretty heavy rain recently). I also took a photo of some rather lovely baby cherry tomatoes, but I don’t want to overload you, dear reader, with tomato porn, so I hope you can be satisfied with a picture of our Big Boys (Seriously. That’s the name of the variety.)
In the meantime, we’ve also got a fair number of cucumbers starting to look like they might be ready for picking any day now. Until they turn dark green, they kind of look like some sort of alien pod though. Maybe they’re not really cucumbers, and maybe we should be better about locking our doors at night. Check this out:
Although we initially believed we’d be able to just continually harvest our arugula, it appears to not be the case. It’s starting to get really, really leggy, and it’s pretty much impossible trying to keep up with pinching off all the little flowers it keeps shooting up, so we’ve started pulling a few plants every time we want a salad, as I did tonight. Once we have a few squares completely free again, we’ll start replanting those, either with more arugula or possibly with some simpson curly leaf lettuce seeds that I was given at work. You can probably tell that it’s getting thinner on the right-hand side of the arugula section in the top photo if you look really closely, but here’s a picture of some leggy arugula, ripped fresh from the garden:
And finally, because I like to end on a positive note, here’s what I think was the absolutely most exciting thing that I noticed out in the garden today. You see, I was utterly convinced that our eggplant was going to continue to inch along, sending out flowers without making any fruit. Well, hot damn. I was wrong:
Before I sign off, I figured I’d share with you all how I procrastinated at work for about 10 minutes today. I made a QR code that links to this blog. Check it out, if you have a phone that can read them. I’m totally fascinated by the technology. Anyhow, hopefully I’ll have some more answers to the research questions that are arising RE: fungus growing on our fertilizer and if there’s anything we can do about tomato cracking (other than water regularly and pray that we aren’t deluged).