Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Little Rain Makes All The Difference

We have had some nice rain rain over the last two days. It has made an amazing difference in my fall crops. They seem really very happy now. On to a tour of what is in the garden right now.

This is the end of the rock wall garden. The lettuce is perking up. Before it was struggling, but it has grown a lot in the last couple of days. Other things in this photo, basil, chard, parsley, and bunching onions.

Just a bit farther on is some more lettuce and the radishes and turnips. The kale is in the back. It is getting eaten by some caterpillars. They seem to like the turnips better though as that is the only place I found them. The turnips can handle the damage as their leaves are huge. The poor kale is so tiny still. Now some of it is totally defoliated.

Next down the line are some of my tomatoes. I have two plants that are alive. My GabrielleAnn and Cherokee Purple. The Cherokee Purple is about five feet tall and just as wide. It is a huge plant. It has had occasional disease try to get in, but it seems to recover and grow on. Too bad there aren't all that many tomatoes left on it that are big enough to ripen. Enough for me to keep it there, but nothing like from the last wave of tomatoes.

Right next to my Cherokee, is my row cover under which I have all my Asian greens. The row cover keeps them pretty pristine except for the little bit of slug damage on the edges. Can you believe this mass of green? In the front are two kinds of bok choy. The next row back is tatsoi, then comes Chinese broccoli and last but not least is the Fun Jen. This spring I didn't plant enough of the Chinese broccoli. I got very little harvest. I couldn't use it as a separate ingredient, but only as a tiny piece in a stir fry. Now I get a decent harvest. It is enough for one for a meal this week. Yum.

Some of the bok choy is bolting already. Sigh. It has seen way too much heat this fall. But most of it seems to be sizing up. I'll have to thin it and the tatsoi out again soon.

I took some thinnings from the last bed and planted them right next door under the same row cover. I also put some turnip seeds and radish seeds in between the rows. I think it was a mistake to transplant the bok choy and tatsoi so late. It should have been done earlier. I didn't because I wanted my Amish Paste tomatoes to get big enough before pulling it out. There was a nice flush going on. I hate to miss such things. But because of that they were transplanted too late. They may just all bolt. But it was worth it. I probably should have just transplanted the Chinese broccoli or the Fun Jen over there instead. Fun Jen takes a lot longer to mature.

Farther along is my lone surviving zucchini. It has survived a nasty attack of the SVB. It had really bad powdery mildew going on. When I pulled out all the rest of the squash I cut off the bad leaves. Ever since it has been growing like gangbusters.

Look how long its stem is. I wish there were a way to control this plant. It likes to just meander along the ground and when it does it smothers everything in its path. This year it took out some poor unsuspecting dried beans.

I'm sorry. I just had to show you this photo of the huge zucchini blossom with a visitor. I know. Now you will all never visit my blog again because I just had to show a huge slug. He was really quite fascinating. I've never had a slug this big in my garden before. RIP. I hope I never will again either.

Past the zucchini in the old squash bed I planted some spinach to over winter. It has had really spotty germination. Or maybe it was that slug taking down the seedlings? I guess I'll never know.

I have a few other things that didn't have their photo taken. They were being shy today. The pole dried beans are still drying pods. I'll pick them again during the next dry spell. I have some peppers still putting out. The jalapenos are really putting on a nice flush of flowers and peppers now that the weather has cooled down a bit. I should have a lot in a month if the frost doesn't get them first.


  1. Eeeewwww. Now I don't want to eat my breakfast.

    Slugs aside, your garden is looking amazing compared to mine....or what's left of mine. Our zucchinis could have been twins if I'd have removed the leaves that had powdery mildew, but after Mr. Granny ran over it with the lawnmower I didn't think it was worth the effort. Your spinach looks just like mine, and I've always had beautiful fall spinach.

  2. Wow your new plantings have grown so fast! Your fall garden is looking beautiful already!

  3. I swear, this year has produced the most prolific giant slugs ever! My chickens are even sick of them!

  4. Strange, but no matter how much you water stuff it's just not the same as rain!

  5. Granny, I apologies, but I just couldn't resist posting it. The last time I put a slug photo up I got complaints. I know better but do it anyway. The spinach is really spotty. Some of the seedlings are over a foot apart. I try to get them at about six inches. I think I ought to reseed.

    A Kitchen Garden in Kihei Maui, thanks

    Rachel, this year for us has been pretty slug free. I was shocked when I saw this one. Our super dry weather has kept the number to almost non existence. And this is the year I see the huge one. I hope it isn't a harbinger of things to come.

    Jan, no it never is. Rain always works wonders.

  6. You know, your old garden always looked so beautiful and vibrant, but this one looks fantastic as well. I'm so glad you're still able to do what you love even after the move. You barely skipped a beat.

  7. I have yet to see a slug in person in my garden, so I'm glad you posted a picture of yours in all its yucky glory. Also thanks for posting pictures of your garden under the row covers. Now I know what my asian greens are supposed to look like if they were growing healthy in the garden!

  8. Daphne, encouraged by your slug photo, I just posted some pictures of my garden pests - hornworms, cabbage worms and aphids. Although not as slimy as a slug, but I thought my hornworm made for a pretty yucky garden pest!

  9. Well I have to say that my favourite photo was the slug. Just because it's so darn slimey looking. Nice capture. Looks like the fall crops are going to keep you in harvests for awhile!

  10. Holy slug! My kale has been ravaged as well, the caterpillars have been eating my basil too, which I don't remember having a problem with in the past.

  11. In my garden, whenever it rains, it seems like everything doubles in size. I love that.

  12. If you think that one little old slug would make me squeamish you REALLY have not seen the monsters we have in the rainy coastal pacific northwest. We have banana slugs and brown slugs and they are the size of small cats (well not really but they are huge!). Why I have even been brave enough to pick them up with a bare hand (not recommended as the slime is sticky and is hard to wash off even with soap - I know this because I have done it).

    Okay enough about slugs... your fall greens are beautiful and your zucchini must be related to mine because I have three plants that are still going strong.

  13. Ribbit, This one is harder to take photos of since it is one long strip of a garden. I loved the old garden photos taken from above so you can see the whole thing. I'm hoping once the new garden is in I'll be able to do that again. It will miss parts of it, but hopefully I can get most of the garden in one photo.

    thyme, I'm glad someone loved my slug photo. I love photos of all the icky things in the garden. I like seeing the good and the bad. The ladybugs and the slugs. And I loved your icky photos too :>

    Ottawa Gardener, I didn't have time for a really good fall garden. I only had time to plant the fast maturing plants. No broccoli or Chinese cabbage for me this year. But I'll have greens so I'm pretty happy with that.

    Kelly, My basil is not far from my kale, but they seem to have left it alone. Hopefully I won't have too many more hatching.

    meemsnyc, I do too. Especially in years like this with no rain. The plants love the real stuff. Our chemical laden drinking water isn't good for them.

    kitsapFG, you are more brave than I. I pick the small ones up with my hands, but that one, not so much. I could imagine the effort to get his slime off of my fingers. Ewwww. And I'm shocked by my zucchini. I should have put the photo of the stem up. The squash vine borers really got to it badly. I don't know how it can grow with its stem half eaten away, but it is. You all out west are really lucky you don't have the SVB.

  14. that snail couldn't keep me away Daphne! I love your blog posts!

  15. Your garden looks absolutely beautiful! It's been a while since I've stopped by, but I was excited to see all of the progress. Your greens look fantastic!

  16. That is an amazing zucchini plant. I may do the same with a couple of cucumbers I left in the ground but wanted to get rid off this afternoon because of the mildew problem, and the slug picture... eww!


  17. Toni, I'm glad I didn't scare everyone away.

    Megan, thanks

    Mary, I have a tendency to pull things out prematurely. I hate when they get all mildewy. And then it spreads, but cutting off all the bad leaves works pretty well.