Sunday, June 6, 2010


Garden on 5/29 - basil, parsley and chard in the front

I took photos of the garden last week. I really meant to show them to you. I promise I did. Then when I didn't get a chance to put up that post before the move, I figured I'd have time on Thursday or Friday. Or even Saturday. Right. My priority was so not my blog. It was trying to find things in my house. Somewhere my dish detergent is hidden in a box. All the kitchen boxes have been opened and put away, but nowhere is my hand soap, my dishwasher detergent, or my Dawn. It is in the pit I call the basement. The place where boxes go to hide. They mysteriously change their labels just so they can stay in the cool part of the basement and not come up into the heat.

Today's Garden

There has been a lot of growth since that last photo was taken a week ago. The majority of the growth has been in the back part though.

A week ago the beans were just little tiny plants. Now they are starting to climb.

I especially love the look of the scarlet runner beans that Becky sent me. Some of their leaves split and the plant stem is dark. It looks much more mysterious than my other beans.

Zuke from a week ago

Zuke from two days ago (pole beans in the back)

The zukes are just growing like crazy. I'm sure in a month they will be taking over the bed. Also growing like crazy in this bed are the butternut squash and the cukes.

And the cilantro in the shadiest part of the bed is starting to grow. I'm a little worried that it is too hot here for it and it will bolt prematurely. Ah well, then I'll call it coriander. Dill has also started coming up in front of my cukes. I'll have to thin them all out sometime.

Tomaotes! Most of them are in the lower of the two beds. The rock wall has two different heights. The lower bed I think of as the front bed and the higher as the back. They do love these bed. Or so I thought until I went back to the old house. After not seeing those for a few days they are huge. Just huge. Bigger than these. About a third of the tomatoes have blossoms on them already - Chocolate Cherry, Emma, Gabrielle, Heinz, Market Miracle and Principe Borghese. Some even have more than one truss blooming. In this heat it won't take long for them all to start blooming.

Decapitated pepper

And not only did I steal Granny's heat, but somehow I got her birds at the new house too. Sigh. Maybe she sent them to me for stealing her heat? They killed my cumin. They tried to kill one of my marigolds, but it would take a lot more than a sparrow to kill one of those. I hack them back viciously in the summer and they thrive on it. The sparrows here flock in huge numbers. They swoop down and take things apart. I liked my old birds. I had mixed birds of all kinds (including sparrows). But they rarely killed things. Even the crows I had didn't pull up my plants. I need some hawks here to keep my sparrows under control. Maybe I can convince my old redtailed hawk to follow me here.

And so we can leave on a good note. I'll show you that the tomatillos are doing well too. I can't wait to try them. At the old house they are getting decimated by the cucumber beetles, but these are doing well. It looks like a bit of insect damage, but tomatillos can handle a lot more before the are slowed down much.


  1. I love the new garden. It's so neat and pretty. This heat is really getting things going. It's such a nice gardening year, especially after last years debacle. I hope you're able to get the house under control soon, I hate unpacking.

  2. Things have certainly grown a lot in your new garden! I'm glad the move went fine, and I'm sure that kitchen stuff will turn up when it's good and ready.

  3. Wow, your garden has really grown a lot in a week. The new one is looking great. It must be difficult to divide your time between two gardens and moving chores on top of that.

    So, I have an off topic question for you. When do you harvest chamomile? My plants are just starting to bloom and put out the first ray petals, do you pick them when the ray petals are fully formed but before the flowers start to dry on the plants? Or do you pick them before the ray petals start to open? Thanks!

  4. The garden looks great. I did the same thing comparing the garden over a 10 day period. Check it out on the June 4th entry. I put cliantro in the shade of a larger plant to keep it a little longer but it does bolt easy. I planted Vietnamese cilantro last year and love it. I must admit, totally different from the more common type. Good for cooking not for salsa. Re Michelle: I pick the chamomile when the ray petals are formed and the center has a square top before they get round and dry out.

  5. The new garden is really doing well! I imagine your old homestead garden is also coming right along too. I was hoping you would do a post soon on the new gardens though, because I have been curious about how it had come together. With the exception of the sparrow damaged plants, everything looks really healthy and happy. I have Sunset runner beans growing again this year, and like your Scarlet runner beans - I find them vigorous and interesting growers. What I like even more aobut them is that they tolerate a little bit of shade and still produce abundantly. Does the gate in the first picture open up into your neighbor's area?

  6. The Mom, we are working hard on unpacking. Sometimes I unpack and think I have it right then find out (like a couple days ago) that the spatula and spoon drawer really ought to be by the oven and the bag and paper drawers shouldn't. I keep moving things around. Today we unpacked the laundry room and a lot of what we are calling the nursery to freak people out. It is the plant nursery room and has shelves for my lights (with my beading stuff, the laundry stuff and a bed for extra guests - oh and will have my sewing machine in it when I find it). We also did the linen closet and the guest room and closet of the master bedroom. This afternoon I swear I'm goofing off.

    Jan, I'm guessing it will be the last box that I get to.

    michelle, Chamomile is a PITA to pick. I used to do it when the flowers developed their petals and started to pull them back at night, but now I'm lazy. I pick only once a week (well I would if I were there, boy mine need to be picked). And I pick all the flowers except the ones that have just opened and the petals aren't really formed yet. I never wait for them to dry on the plant. They should be fresh before you dry them.

    johanna, I really ought to try the slow bolting cilantro, but I've been growing the same self seeded cilantro for about 15 years and have a weird attachment to them. Even the summer that I was sick and didn't have a garden the cilantro (and dill and parsley) self seeded and kept going through the weeds.

    kitsapFG, Yes my neighbor is is growing tomatoes and you can see them through the garden fence. The gate is his. I'm trying to plant the lower growers to the south of him so I don't shade him out too much, but the tomatillos are to the south east of a couple of his tomatoes.

  7. I'm so envious...My garden is so slow because of our extended Winter.

  8. LOL! When I got back from AZ, I accused Mr. H of forgetting to pack the box with my cinnamon, garlic and sage. I had to purchase new (replaced the home dried sage with some from the store). A month or so later, when I ran out of oatmeal, I pulled out the container I'd brought back with me and stored in the freezer. Opened it up, and there were my spice jars, sitting atop the oatmeal, right where I had put them for safe travel!

    Your garden is looking fantastic! I promise, I didn't send my sparrows to you. They are still here, but not bothering the garden so much now. I think they must just like the seedlings, or they are getting their fill of earwigs and slugs now. Knock on wood.

    I love your garden wall along the fence! Why didn't I put my raised beds along my back fence? I think I could have made better use of that space than I did. Oh wells, too late now.

  9. Oh, I just love the neatness of the new garden. So, you still have the old going too?

  10. LOL. We had movers pack our things when we moved from VA to CA, and it wasn't until a year after the move that I found my cookie cutters in a box labeled "linens" in our linen closet. How did kitchen tools from one floor end up in a linen box from a different floor???

    Anyway, the growth you had in one week is amazing! It's nice seeing your garden getting "settled in" at your new house.

  11. The last time we move it took 5 years to find the TV remote.

    The new front garden is looking good. What does the rear garden look like or shouldn't I mention that?

    Garden On.

  12. Thanks for giving us a sneak peak of your new garden. It definitely looks like you've been busy. It looks like everyone is having a easy time with beans except for me!

  13. Great job on the garden and I am amazed that you are back on line so soon after the move!

  14. Woooo! Everything looks GREAT- you are off to an impressive start. Can't believe you are managing all this WHILE you're moving. A true feat!

  15. sissyjane, and I'm envious of people that live in warmer climates too.

    Annie's Granny, I love the raised bed garden along my fence, but they made it 3' deep which is so hard to deal with. My arms don't go that long. I wish they had made it 6" shallower. It would be so much easier.

    EG, yup I've still got the old one. Until the house is sold and out of my hands I'll keep it going.

    Momma_S, I'm always amazed where I find things too. When a couple things won't fit into the kitchen boxes they will put them in some other labeled box. Arrggg.

    DaBeardedOne, lol a lot of the important things we brought over ourselves. I packed up most of my office desk. Those things I can find. The rest is still a mystery. Someday I'll find it. I hope.

    The rear garden right now is just subsoil. We have a plan for it. I have permission from the designer to put it online (her contract states that I'm not supposed to copy it etc). And I will at some point. But it will be sometime in July if things go well that the work will be started. But I'm thinking it might not start until August the way things are going right now. The landscape companies said they would get back to me last week with estimates, but I still don't have any.

    Thomas, oh no. I still haven't gotten to read all my backed up blog posts. I'll have to see what is happening with your beans. The funny thing is I was at your blog yesterday, but then got pulled away by my kids for something.

    2 Green Acres, it is hard doing both, but I'm cheating and not working right now at all.

    Anonymous, well not much gardening has been done during the move. Except for the weeds it just keep growing. Even mother nature is helping out by watering the plants every day. Maybe I should say over watering the plants.

  16. Thanks for the chamomile advice Daphne! My plants are fortunately quite small so I don't suppose it's going to be too much of a PITA.