Garden Diary - Farm 2004
Daffodils are up everywhere, but not blooming yet. It's been very wet, with just a few days when you can get out and work. I've just about done away with the first 12 yards of mushroom compost into beds. Expanded the first area I thought of for the veg garden. Started laying our the beds for the rose garden, just the first section. I'm having to take the turf off that, then dig them out for compost and refill.
We did quite a bit of pruning on the apple trees. Leaving some for next year.
Cloudy and cold, around 40 degrees. I put up the deer fence around the veg garden yesterday. Took a couple of days. We got 5 bear root fruit trees from Home depot the last time we went, a few days ago. I planted those out today, inside the fence. They are: Puget Gold Apricot, Santa Rosa Plum, Italian prune, Reliant Peach, all semi-dwarf. The deer fence also includes the big apple by the greenhouse, the two on the ridge and the one further over by the other side of the area.
I plotted the rose garden, the first 4 beds and we have 17 roses in pots to transplant as soon as I have finished a couple of those beds. I have to also put a deer fence around that area, but am out of poles and fence for the time being.
Fall 2004 -
Plant bulbs out side my window, more bulbs in the slope down from the bedroom and bulbs in the beds in front of the carport.
Planted the 6 peonies we bought at the flower show this weekend in the rose garden next to the rose beds in a triangular bed on the east side. The peonys are:
Exceptional large blooms
Dbl, very large
Except. Large blooms
Dutchess de Nemours
White with red flecks
I hope I planted these correctly. I wasn't sure of the orientation and some may have had their roots put in too deep. We'll see how they do. They were all "budding" out and I put the buds an inch or so below the top of the soil. I mixed two bags of sand into the soil of the holes I dug. Person at the show said to do that and to plant them about 4' apart. Course we'll have to put in lots more of them.
Put out more mushroom compost on future bed. Almost out of mushroom compost. Started to dig asparagus bed. Francesca put out more garlic, onions and shallots. We have one bed completely planted in garlic, fava beans, and onions. Another half planted in the things Francesca planted yesterday.
Beautiful day today. Started out foggy, but at 2 is about 70 and sunny outside. Perfect weather. I got about part of the raspberry bed dug, 9 holes for blueberries and I planted the two trees we bought at Raintree this weekend, a comice and a nectarine. Francesca planted the asparagus bed yesterday with Mary Washington we bought at the nursery in Mossyback and the Jersey Knight we bought at Raintree. Filled up a 30 something foot bed in the middle of the vegetables. Mary Washington are in the bottom part of the bed. Lots of the daffodils are blooming very prettily. Some of the apple trees have little buds on them. Definitely spring. But there still can be cold periods. It froze not too many days ago, last week, I think.
Got a second 10 yards of mushroom compost a week or so ago. Putting it down before digging the beds has worked very well to get rid of the grass and make the bed digging much easier.
Finished and raked the new bed for raspberries. To plant the ones we bought when we visited the nurseries down by Mossyrock and Onalaska. Have been working my way thru the old compost pile which has lots of blackberry bushes that did not really compost well, so I am having to take them out and add them to the burn pile. Going to use that compost to plant the potatoes I ordered yesterday with. I ordered Warba, Rose Finn Apple, All Blue, German Butterball, and White Rose. 2 lbs each.
The apple trees are budding out, starting with the little one by the cattery and the big red one below the vegetable garden, and some others. The plum by the bedroom is covered with tiny buds also. Daffodils look great where we have planted this year.
Light frost two days ago.
Went to the Western Washington Fruit meeting in Tacoma yesterday, Saturday. And stopped by the Olympia Rose Society rose sale on the way. Bought two roses, but they didn't have much of a selection. The fruit show was great. Lots of cuttings. Francesca got several of figs and quince. We also bought a plum and 2 little mulberries. Good talk on grapes.
Francesca planted out most of the raspberries. Need to make that bed bigger.
This is what we bought at Raintree Nursery on the 6th.
Plum tree by the bedroom has just about bloomed out. Very pretty.
Sowed a flat of Spinach (Long Standing Bloomsdale). (This was excellent spinach, very tasty. But half a flat at a time is more like what we need.)
Sowed a double row of Oregon Giant Snow Peas against the wall. Plan to put tomatoes in there when the peas come out in about June ( Peas were still going strong in June.). (These peas took 2.5 months to start having peas.)
The flat of brocolli did not sprout so I will resow that flat. The flat of lettuce is doing well and the flat of leeks is up.
Dug part of the extension of the raspberry bed. Now about 50 feet long and still needing a few more feet to get all the raspberries in we have. The raspberry bed has 17 plants in it. About 10 of those are Tulameen, 5 at the end and 5 at the beginning. The ones in the middle are Meeker. Or so.
Francesca sowed beets in a middle section of the bed #8. Beautiful day.
Turned over the last 10 feet of bed 8 and planted carrots in there. (The bed turned over beautifully. Mixed a little sand in the top, but could have put much more in, if I had had some more.) We had some seeds of Ingot, long nantes type, left over from last year or so, and I mixed those with a package of Bolero Hybrid, which I think maybe also a Nantes type and spread those in the bed. Beautiful day, little overcast, but warm, maybe up to 80!
Sowed a flat of Spinach (Long Standing Bloomsdale).
Dug the bed we will plant out the lettuce and spinach into, I think. Probably this weekend. Those plants are doing well in the greenhouse, getting big.
I also planted out the potatoes we bought a month ago. They've been sitting in their box since they came because I didn't have enough compost to put a row out for them. I'm using the potato planting system of just planting them on top of the ground with minimal preparation in compost and I will add compost to the row as they get bigger. That's supposed to make it easier for them to make potatoes. We'll see. I had too many potatoes for the short row I had started and they really wanted to be put out, so I used a row that I started some weeks ago and did not yet actually dig, so it just had a good pile of mushroom compost on it that seemed pretty well decomposed. I think the last 10 yards we got was not as hot as the first 12 yards. And that's been composting now for a month or two, so it's probably ok to plant in. Anyway, I got one of the types in the bed by the raspberries where I was originally going to plant them all, then the rest in the newer bed. The 15 feet of Rose finn apple is in up by the raspberries. Those are small white and look like they will make good potatoes. Down in the other bed is: All Blue for about 12 feet, then German Butterball for 6 feet, then White Rose for 9 feet, then Warba for 6 feet. 2 pounds of each but since they all weigh different amount in some cases, like the rose finn apple, that is a lot of potatoes and in the case of the German Butterball which is twice as big, that's not so much potato. Maybe should by them by the row foot or something, once we get used to how big they are. I just stuck them in the compost and then covered them up with more compost by hand.
It rained pretty well this afternoon, so everything got watered. We need more mushroom compost. Saw a deer in the yard for the first time since winter.
Planted out half a flat of lettuce which took up half a bed. F. bought several herbs like Thyme and put them out in the herb part of the garden.
Master Gardener's Sale in Seattle. Lots of good plants. Bought an old Mr Lincoln for $10! We took the little hand truck which worked out well to carry stuff with, even though we got a parking place really close to the sale this time for a change.
Turned over the Bed #1 that I had originally meant to plant sweet peas in. Mostly top soil from the asparagus bed. I put a row of Mammoth Melting Peas in there (105 days) and on the outside I planted out as many of the mus. Mix I started a few months ago in the greenhouse. Got about a quarter of a flat in there. That's a mix of lettuce and greens things. Maybe some kale.
Got another 10 yards of mushroom compost. Finished digging the first rose bed.
April 21, 2004
Planted out about half the flat of leeks into about half the Rose Bed A because we don't have roses to go into that area yet and I don't have enough room for everything that is ready to be planted out. Planted out about a quarter of the spinach flat into the bottom half of the bed that has lettuce in it from a few days ago, Bed #5 or so. Got 10 bags of steer manure mix from Home Depot to put into the second rose bed I am about halfway through digging. Nice day today. Rained lightly all day yesterday, but today was overcast and partly sunny.
Finished digging the second rose bed. Put out some of the new mushroom compost. Nice sunny day. Medlar is quite a spectacle.
Very sunny day. Planting out some of the roses in the first two beds. The rose nearest the door in the bed in front of the guest house is probably RedGold from JP. A florabunda. I can't find any tag for the other one or two next to it. We may move those into the rose garden to keep them safer.
Another sunny day. 80 something today in the shade. I weeded the first sowing of peas and intersowed Carouby de Maussane into the empty places where the first sowing didn't come up or got eaten. The first sowing is about 3 or 4 inches high, almost time to put in something for them to grow on, bamboo stakes. (Those were Oregon Giant sowed at the end of March.)
Worked on the compost pile for the car port area. Filled one half barrel with dirt and potting soil and Francesca put some of the squash (4) we started in the greenhouse in there. All zuchinnis.
Cut some worms off the chehalis.
Drove up to the Whitney Gardens in Brinnon and bought 7 rhododendrons:
- Jersey Knight Asparagus (10crowns),
- Taylor's Gold Comice
- Artic Jay Nectarine on Lovell
- Tulameen Raspberry (5)
- Meeker Raspberry (5)
The gardens were great, lots of good blooms. I took about 2 rolls of pictures. It was mostly sunny while we were there. Nice day to visit. Some of the rhodies had already passed, might be fun to go up earlier next year, also.
Planted borage, echinacia(white swan), marigolds and sunflowers out directly in the herb bed. Plant out lavender and feverfew as plants also in the herb bed.
Remember to leave paths at lawnmower width.
Planted out the rhododendrons we bought Sunday and the two mulberries. The Rhodies are in front of the laurel as part of the hedge behind the flower garden. Pink and red on the left and white on the right.
On Saturday we went to the Master Gardener's sale in Shelton. Very good sale, we bought lot of plants, including two rubarb and three little artichokes. Then we went up to Seattle to visit Fern and bought plants for her balcony. And also picked up a big geranium and another rose that was blooming dramatically at the nursery begging to be taken home. I planted that out yesterday in the red bed. Also put up the deer fence around that part of the yard.
Planted out about half the tomatoes into the bed I just finished double digging this am. And a squash. Also dug the rest of the bed by the fence and put Purple Trionfo Violetto pole beans by the fence and Cupidon French Filet bush beans next to them, several rows. Put string up for the edible pod peas that are getting big by the wall.
Red rhododendron by the study window is spectacular right now. The rose by the sewing room is about to bloom and so is one of the roses by the guest house.
Put the drip system in for the roses and new rhododendrons yesterday and another one for the mulberries and the little apple.
Dug the bed by the wall and planted out the rest of the tomatoes. Now we have two beds of tomatoes.
Rhododendron by the study is about at its height. Great red in the sun. Most of the plant is blooming. The one in the corner is blooming also, a big pink flower.
State of the Garden
We have several beds planted. In bed one by the fence we have pole beans that have just been planted this last weekend and bush beans next to them, then snow peas that are about 2 inches high and just about ready to start climbing on the fence and in front of them greens of various types planted out after being started in the greenhouse. Those are big enough for us to eat leaves off of in salads, which we have been doing for a few days.
Bed number 2, I haven't finished digging that short bed yet. Going to put out the rubarb and artichokes we bought at the Shelton gardeners sale a week ago.
Bed 3 has potatoes in it which are doing ok so far, getting big. They need to have stuff hilled up against them soon. This bed was not really dug. Manure was spread on top of the grass and let rot, then the potatoes were just stuck into the layer of manure. They seem to be doing ok. Most of the grass ands weeds were killed off by the rotting mushroom compost.
Bed 4 was just dug a few days ago with lots of steer manure added as it was very clayey. That was double dug. Planted 11 or so tomatoes in the first half of it and I guess we will put squash in the bottom half in a few days, but we haven't planted it yet. Started the tomatoes in the greenhouse.
Bed 5 has lettuce in the front half and spinach in the bottom. Both are getting big and looking good.
Bed 6 has garlic in the top 6 or 8 feet, then fava beans, and then onions. The fava beans are big and flowering. The garlic is big and looking good. Some of the onions are flowering, which they are not supposed to do.
Bed 7 has asparagus in it which is doing fine. Most, if not all, the plants are flowering and looking good.
Bed 8 has Onions in half of it, beets and carrots in the bottom half. Onions are big, Beets and carrots were sowed not too long ago and not too big yet, but look like they are coming along ok.
Bed 9 is not put in yet. About half of it has mushroom compost, but that needs to be extended to the bottom half, let sit and then dug in.
Bed 10 is partly two raspberry plants that I cannot find. Otherwise not put in yet.
Bed 11 is not put in yet. ( two blueberries?)
Bed 12 is not put in yet.
Bed 13 is not put in yet.
Bed 14 is a potato bed that is doing ok. That was originally going to be longer, and will be extended someday, but as I planted the potatoes in what I had dig it was clear that they would not all fit into whatever extension I could make, and time was running out to get the potatoes planted, so I just put them into the space for bed 3 instead of finishing the potato bed.
Bed 15 is the raspberries. They are doing good, not too big yet, but all the plants are up and look happy.
Bed 16 is not dug yet.
Bed 17 is by the wall. That has snow peas in the first part and tomatoes just planted in the last part. The snow peas are starting to climb up the strings I just put out for them. They're about a foot high. No flowers yet. The tomatoes were raised in the greenhouse and just put out yesterday. That bed had fava beans in part of it which was just intended to help the soil, but they had beans, some of which we just ate yesterday. Anyway, we took the fava beans out when we redug it for the tomatoes and put them on the compost pile.
The new fruit trees are doing well. All have leaves and have had flowers. The quince was the last to flower and was very pretty.
The 10 blueberries are having flowers. All the plants are small, just less than 2 feet high, but look happy enough.
In the bed # 4 and along the wall, left to right, in Mid-may we have planted out from the greenhouse:
- Heavenly Scent, 4', Pink
- Polar Bear, Tall 6', White
- David, Tall 6', Red
- Snow Queen 5' White
- Pilgrim Tall Pink
- Old Port 5' Wine
- Whitney Purple 4' Violet
Dug some more of the bed # 2. That's a fairly recent one and it is hard to dig. I want to put the artichokes and rubarb in there, once that is finished.
I put 4 bamboo tepees in the bed with the tomatoes and have planted pole bean Romano around the first two and emerite around the last two. Emerite takes 58 days and romano 64 days. That plus the pole beans planted along the fence should be just about enough for us.
Spinach and lettuce look just about big enough to eat.
Francesca put out the two rubarb, three artichoke, and a squash in bed #2. Also put a squash at the end of the potato bed by the raspberries where there was a tiny bit of unused space. Planted a tomato at the end of the raspberries to see what will happen if we don't water it. Planted the cardoon in the herb bed #2, along with some other stuff. It was overcast and misty, but still a nice day outside.
Went out to the wholesale Lawyer Nursery for the sale where they are open to the public. Bought several trees: 3 lilacs, Chinese witchhazel, couple of red rosa regusas, two dogwoods, a walnut, Linden, forthesia, Privet... bunch of things. Raining this afternoon, with thunder and lightening.
A couple of water lilies are blooming. The potatoes are really big and I'm having trouble keeping up with the hilling of them. The bush and pole beans that I just planted in bed 1 are up. The roses by the front door are blooming. Both are the same one, dark red climber, not much scent, but very pretty buds and flowers. The Cecil Brunner in back is blooming well. Rhododendrons are still blooming, and the tulip tree is starting to bloom, very pretty. Still working on getting the water set up for the trees and the veg garden. But we have had some rain today, and day before yesterday we had a good storm, so haven't had to water all that much of late.
The lettuce and spinach bed has done wonderfully. We have been eating both for weeks now. I froze two bushels of spinach and we have it regularly for dinner. It's starting to bolt, so we will take the remainder out, maybe this weekend. The lettuce is way ahead of us and I don't know what we will do with that. It's quite delicious, but way more than we can eat by ourselves. Plant less next time and more often.
Planted the two red rogusa's in between the two yellow rododendrons by the driveway. Almost done digging the third rose bed. Several of the roses are blooming, like Mr Lincoln we got at the plant sale in Seattle.
We have gotten a few peas for the last few days. By the wall. And the peas in the greens bed are getting pretty big, but not hanging on the fence very well. Too much grass along there. Tomatoes we planted out are doing fine, some flowers. And the tomatoes in the greenhouse seem very happy.
One zuchinni, in the barrel, has a big zuch on it. Several others planted in various places around the garden, but not doing much yet. The potatoes are huge. I've tried to keep up with them by putting cut grass around them, but can't keep up, they are getting so big. Need a bale of straw, I guess.
Everything looks great right now. I haven't had to water too much of late cause we have had a few days of good rain and drizzle.
The comfry has completely taken over the beds of garlic and onions. I'll have to get in there and take some of that out so we can see how they are doing, but they seem fine. We've cut some garlic tops lately that threatened to flower.
Planted Yellow Crookneck summer squash beside the peas on the wall, one row of that. Planted Emerite pole beans in between the peas on the wall to fill in some of the empty spaces. But as I looked at it, there weren't as many empty spaces as I had thought, so not many of these pole beans planted, really. Planted Scallop sunburst squash at the bottom of the potato bed where there is already one something squash planted and big, started in the greenhouse.
Reached down into the potato bed to see if I could find any potatoes and there are some. Picked two, will do more harvesting tomorrow. Several are starting to blossom now. They are huge, about three feet high, some of them. Seem to be doing well, no pests that I can see. Next time we plant them, I will want to have a large amount of done mushroom compost to use to put around them. I think that would work best.
Picked the second zucchini from the plant that we put into the tub from the greenhouse. That's the happiest one. The others are in different places around the garden and are doing ok, but that one must have the best soil and water. Picked several rounds of snow peas from the ones planted first. They are about half way up the wall on bamboo and string, doing pretty good. Got some potatoes. I am just about to take out the spinach, we got lots of good spinach from that half bed, but it is about done now. Also about to take out the fava beans in the bed with the garlic. Everything looks good. Beans are big and about to climb on things, and the bush beans are getting pretty big, but not nearly what they will be when they start to produce beans. It has been pretty warm the last few days, so I am having to water again after having a nice wet spell for the week or so before this. 80 yesterday and 80 something today, probably. Tomatoes are flowering and look happy, the ones in the greenhouse are huge. I put a few out back by the pond to see if I could get them to grow down the side of the retaining wall and cover the ground down there with tomatoes. Should also put some squash there. Maybe a cucumber or something. It gets good sun in the afternoon.
Another hot day, probably mid 80's, just like yesterday. Put the drip to the orchard and the blueberries in today. They needed watering, so I am running it for a couple of hours(30 minutes, it turns out.) We haven't had any rain to speak of for several days and some things are drying out. Mostly I've been watering some every day. I also finished the drip to the new roses we put in. They are in various stages of happiness. A couple are losing all their leaves, some look very happy. Mr Lincoln is blooming nicely.
The first pea bed we planted is putting out a lot of peas, but I think we should have planted a longer bed of them, or more thickly. Twice as many would be a good amount of peas, more than that would be too much. Put in the drip to the orchard and the blueberries. Runs every Sunday at about 7 PM for one hour. Have to check that in a month or so to make sure it is putting out enough water for the blueberries, et al.
Picked squashes off two of the plants at the ends of the beds 2 and 3, or there abouts. Single zuchinni plants that were started in the greenhouse and planted out, we have about 6 of those. Just now starting to produce. Next year, start maybe a few more of those in the greenhouse. They transplanted well and that really gave us a head start on squash, but they like a richer soil.
Lettuce is starting to bolt. Planted way too much of that. Peas near the side fence are blooming and up a couple of feet. The variety of greens in that bed is fantastic. Some mustard is bolted and is flowering, lots of the stuff is still good though. It was put in too thickly, maybe, it is hard to pick. Better in a two sided bed. And all over the garden the weeds have made working in the beds difficult.
Picked several carrots for salad tonight. They're ready to eat.
Put drip in to the few things planted in the sw side bed, three tomatoes and two roses, for some things. Also set up a sprinkler for the bed by the fish pond, but haven't set that timer yet. Haven't set either timer, actually. Just about done with the drip in the greenhouse. Put a sprinkler on the herbs with a timer to water every 7 days for 90 minutes. We found that was just about an inch of water. All the main veg beds are done, except the asparagus and garlic beds and the lettuce bed.
Francesca planted out some lettuce and cabbage in the place where we had spinach. The other lettuce is just about over, most of it is bolting and I'll take that out soon, probably.
Beautiful day, in the 80's, but slightly sneezy. Lots of the grass is having pollen. So, I only go out for short stretches.
Picked some of the peas on the fence today for the first time. They're about 5 feet and starting to have peas. The ones on the wall I am picking about every other day and getting quite a few each time, today, more than enough for one meal. The ones on the fence are : Mammoth Melting Peas planted 4/19. Great peas. The ones on the wall are: Oregon Giant Snow Peas.
Also picked three zuchs from three different plants. We have about 5 big squash plants that are bearing, and we have several ones just up of yellow crooked neck and scallop.
Put drip on the stuff in the greenhouse and programmed the timer on the things in the sw bed. That sw area has a couple of cucumbers , 4 tomatoes, and two roses.
Cherry trees are just about ripe.
Noticed that there seem to be more dead bees in front of the hives than normal. Suspect that they may have found a poisonous source, but not sure what that would be. Seemed very busy yesterday. I looked up poppies on the web and there are several comments that bees like poppies, but no indication that they are poisoned by them. Found the following note about rhododendrons, however. Might watch for that in the spring and try to keep these three out of the garden.
"Nectar from different rhododendron species was collected, their toxins analysed and also fed to bees and injected into mice and cats. The species found to be especially poisonous to all victims were R. thomsonii, R arboreum and R. pratti. "
Taking zucchini out of the garden daily, one or two a day. And picking a mess of peas every other day. Took out a big pile of potatoes last Sunday of three kinds, blue, butterball and whatever's next to that, in the end of the bed. The ones at the end of the bed need more compost around their roots, they are popping thru the soil. Lots of good potatoes in there. The potatoes have fallen over and are taking up the pathway. Maybe need to be supported? Or just leave lots of room around them?
The tomatoes are huge. There are a few little tomatoes and in the greenhouse, where we have a row of one each of all the varieties, there are some little tomatotes turning yellow. I picked a few carrots on Sunday also for the chicken. Lots of good carrots in there, hidden under all the weeds which have completely gotten away from us. I mulched the blueberries Sunday, some blueberries on those little plants, they are all doing well, but I am sure they will like the mulch, which I should have put down when they were planted. The beans on the fence have reached the top of the fence. Almost ready to flower. The bush beans have started to flower. They look happy. The beans planted around the poles are climbing up the poles, and look like they are about to flower. Francesca picked an onion the other day. Quite the onion. I supposed the garlic is about ready, too. I'm going to pull the fava beans out, save them for seed and get that bed ready for another bed of carrots.
I planted two flats - One with half Mustard Greens (Red Giant) and half Lettuce mix from Pinetree, the other half Parsley - Prezzemolo Gigante D'Italia and half Spinach - Bloomsdale. In the greenhouse. We'll see how they do and how they do when we set them out, it may be too warm.
I also added some dirt and worm castings to the tomatoes in the greenhouse. And I put some compost on the potatoes that were peaking through the top of the potato bed.
I took out 15 gallons of fava beans in pods from the fava bed, and I am not quite through. That bed is really hard to weed, but I think the asparagus might be even harder. I'm watering the carrot bed and the other beds I need to weed. When I picked some carrots, I had a time to get them out of the ground, some of it at least is a bit dry. But we have some good carrots. The onions at the end of that bed look great. We must do more of those when we get the chance.
I finished taking out the fava bean and garlic bed, leaving the onions for the time being. There were about 20 gallons of beans,n ow drying on the concrete by the chicken house, and maybe 75 garlic heads, of three types, I believe. The tops of the garlic were not all dry, but they were so hidden by the comfrey and weeds in the bed that they were impossible to sort out. I just lifted them when I dug out the weeds. They look just about ready to harvest. They're drying in the driveway on screens in the nice sunny afternoon we have today. The garlic part of the bed was only about 10 feet, but we got lots of garlic. I'd like to replant that as soon as possible. Going to plant carrots, chard, and something in that bed. Also going to take out part of the lettuce bed and replant that. ( I think the garlic was planted at the end of October.)
Picked 5 good sized zucchini for dinner. The squash plants look great. Only the one in the tub is not happy.
Lots of tomatoes on the various plants. In the greenhouse 3 tomatoes on one of the small tomato types are just about ripe.
We have just gotten back from a week in Stanford visiting. While we were away the various timers and watering systems did the watering. Some things suffered, others loved it. I had put a sprinkler in about half of the veg garden as a backup supplemental watering for the drip and soaker that was in the beds already and to water some of the beds that do not have a hose, like the asparagus and carrots. That would have worked better but the bean tepees grew up so well that they shaded the peas and stuff on the far side. Even shaded a bit from water the beans in that far bed did amazingly well and I picked a huge amount of beans from the bush bean plants today. I also got a full basket of peas, and the squash is amazing, practically illegal.
Picked a big mess of beans, many from the last tepee of beans. I'll have to freeze most of those. The tepee getting the most water is having the fewest beans. They all look good and the beans have reached the top of the frames. The peas on the fence and on the wall are starting to turn brown in spots, but we are still getting lots of peas from them every other day. I weeded a bit around the beans so we could use the paths easier. The squash next to the beans is so big it is hard to walk on the path on that side. And the Tomatoes have fallen over onto the old lettuce bed completely obliterating that path. The squash in with the rubarb is having huge green ribbed zucchinis. The potatoes are starting to dry out.
Picked a batch of the blue beans. Very pretty and tender. They did not do as well as the other beans, I didn't train them up the fence as well and not as many of the plants made it. Froze squash, beans , and peas today. The refrigerator was full.
We were away fir a week in PA and when we got back, last Sunday, there were beans everywhere and squash. The peas are turning brown, so I have stopped picking them so religiously. I got two big baskets of beans from the pole beans which have reached over the tops of their teepees. The squash are doing well and the little squash I planted is just starting to have fruit.
I took the hoses off of the potatoes as I think they need to dry out. They seem about ready to harvest and I have taken a lot of potatoes out just off the top of the beds. I think when I take the potatoes out of the main bed I will put garlic in there which will need to be planted about next month.
And I increased the watering of the trees and the raspberries to every three days instead of once a week. I think those things need more water, it's been so dry so far this year.
The pole beans - the last two tepees have had the most beans on them, the first two have the most growth, maybe because they have had more water. They have been very successful. Lot of beans. We have frozen many, because there are way too many for us to eat fresh.
The tomatoes have started to ripen. I picked several ripe ones off the first two plants in the bed next to the potatoes. Lots of green tomatoes on all the plants. They have fallen over onto the potato bed on the one side and the empty bed on the other.
Blueberries have some berries and look ok, maybe need more water. Raspberries look ok, ditto more water maybe. Need their wire which I will put up soon.
Lots of weeding needed in the asparagus and garlic/onion/carrot beds .
The garden has been neglected. It's a mess. Raphael helped me make the 4 unit laying house for the chickens. We also slid poles under as much of the tomatoes as possible and lifted the plants up off the ground a bit. Lots of tomatoes under the plants on the ground are not happy there. Little bit better now. I also put a more substantial pole to support the pole beans. The first two tepees have leaned way over. The third is also leaning. The first ones are really about to fall over. Several things about that. One: Don't plant so many plants on each pole, two per pole is fine. Also the tepees have to be much stronger with legs spread further apart. Probably a good idea to prune the tops of the beans back. Best of all maybe to plant these on the fence and not on tepees at all. The fence at least doesn't fall over. In the case of the tomatoes, the plants got too tall for the cages and all fell over, whereupon they grew into the next two beds, rooting themselves as they went. They need much more substantial support than cages. Maybe a big wire A frame with two sides and enough room inside to walk down so you can get to both sides of the plants and they can continue to grow trained up the wire for about 8 feet. Might take two beds with half the a frame in each bed and the path down the middle. Worth a try next year anyway. Plant further apart so they don't get so entangled too.
Still getting lots of squash, potatoes, beans, tomatoes, et al. Francesca made several quarts of tomato sauce today. I made several dozen half pint jars of apple sauce for Fern this weekend. Raphael cleaned out the blackberry bushes under the big red tree and we pressed another wheelbarrow of apples last Thursday, about 6 gallons. Now we are out of containers and freezing space.
It rained a lot at the end of August, so I turned off the water and have not turned back on yet. It's started to be cold in the am's now, not sure I will be doing much watering this fall, but maybe, maybe by hand. Got to get the potatoes in and stored somehow.
Entered our biggest squash in the zucchini contest in Oakville and won first prize! 25 lbs! One bean tepee fell over and one of the other one's is about to. I picked all the beans off it, as much as I could.
Bought 7 new roses at the Plant Centre in Tumwater. Altissimo, Martine Guillot, Mme Alfred Carriere, Pristine, two William Baffin's and ??. Half off, good time to buy.
Sunny after several days of rain. We went to the sapsot bulb ranch yesterday and bought about 500 bulbs, tulips and daffs. I planted about a 100 in the rose beds this afternoon and another 20 or so down in the orchard, where I am going to plant more. Harder work planting them in the ground that has never been dug up. Needed to get more mulching done. I will put the daffodils around the apple trees and in the various beds that we have that are out where the deer might go where we can't plant tulips. We have about 300 daffodils, so those should be good next spring.
The tomatoes look really bedraggled, although there are still ones getting ripe. Squash also looks to be near it's end, at least the older squash plants. The crookneck is still putting out the squashes.
Overcast, but not raining as it has been for several days. I dugout more of the circle around the male ginko tree and planted about 100 daffodils in there, with some fertilizer and a mulch of old mushroom compost.
Got another 10 yards of mushroom compost delivered to day. Going to make the beds in front of the flower garden deer fence with it, for one thing.
Picked some rotten tomatoes for the chickens. The rains have really done bad things to the tomatoes, though we are still getting more than enough for us to eat every day.
We had some 40 degree nights a week or so ago and they have wiped out the tomatoes, except for the ones in the greenhouse. Might not be a bad idea to keep more veg in the greenhouse to extend the seasons of squash et all. The recent nice weather of the last week or so has brought back some beans and squash.
Layed out more beds in the herb garden. Bought another 200 daffodill bulbs weekend before last on our way back home after mushroom hunting where we got a load of chanterelles. Planted about half of those. Have about 150 bulbs left to plant, both tulips and daffodils.
Pulled the potatoes out of the main potato bed. Got about 150 lbs I believe. The All Blue was a good potato and I have taken the most previously out of that part of the bed. The German Butterball is a good potato, very tasty and there were lots of these. One of the most prolific. Next to that, I believe was the Warba - Whatever it was it was huge and there was a lot of it. Great potato. Then at the end was the White rose - not as prolific and we haven't tried these. Planning on rediging this bed and putting garlic in it.
I also took out the tomatoes and redug that bed for something else to go in there.
Dug the 4th rose bed yesterday and we planted out all roses that we had bought a few weeks ago. (Except a climber that we need a place for it to go.) Plan is to transplant roses from the little house that are not protected into that bed also in Jan or Feb, when it is rose planting season.
Weeded the asparagus bed. There are only about ten or so surviving plants in that bed. Need to add more this spring. They suffered quite a bit by being overrun with comfry and the horrible creeping yellow whatever it is. Garlic bed is ready and I am just waiting for the garlic I have on order. Probably put a few of them in the new rose bed also, for good measure. Can't have too much garlic around the place. We've taken several of the leeks out of the rose beds, they have done pretty well and the leeks are big and fat, some of them.
Planted out the garlic that we got from Irish Eyes, which is also where we got the potatoes. They're in the bed that was potatoes that I just took out. I redug that bed and put in more compost. The garlic is: Spanish Roja (Hardneck Rocambole), Inchelium Red (artichoke Softneck group), Nootka Rose (Silverskin softneck), and Early Italian Purple (Artichoke softneck). That takes up the first 30 feet or so. There is still some squash at the end of the bed. Maybe I will take that out also in a week or so and then have another 15 feet for more garlic. These would all be harvested next July.
Took out the wonderful squash that was at the bottom of the potato bed and added some compost and turned that part of the bed over in preparation of putting some more garlic in there. There are still a few squash plants in there at the end. Flying saucer squash that are still producing a few little squashes. Took out one of the tepees of beans which had fallen over and was not still doing anything. The other tepees are about ready to come out also. Those beans were great this year. We more than a year's worth frozen. Next year planning on putting them on the fence so they don't fall over quite as easily. Also turned over one of the other beds that had been prepared before we went to Stanford this summer and then had gotten weeded up a bit. Lot of worms in that bed. Now ready for fava beans. We are still getting small yellow squashes also. They just don't give up. It's been cold some nights, but I don't think quite down to freezing yet. 35 maybe.
Froze several nights last week. I took out just about all the squash and the rest of the beans today. Both the squash and the beans have done wonderfully this year. Lots of squash, some we froze. I laid out the next couple of beds on the other side of the apple tree and more or less figured out where the remaining beds will go. There's about room for 4 more beds, probably. One of the ones we planted in last year is so covered in weeds that I think I will just cover that with mushroom compost and try to compost the weeds before I turn it over. I've repositioned that one to make more room for a path, which I am now putting at about 2.5 feet. All the paths in the old part of the garden have shrunk to about a foot. Also took out the squash and pea poles and stuff in that bed. Just need to add some compost or manure, turn it over and that will be ready for favas or whatever.
We've planted lots of garlic in the old potato bed and those are coming up now, amazingly. Otherwise we have some fava beans planted but will be putting favas in all the old beds soon.
Francesca stayed home yesterday while I went up to Fern's to go with her to the Doctors office. Francesca said that she planted out the rest of the daffodils, which makes it one heck of a lot of daffodils we have planted this year. I wanted to do more, but ran out of prepared beds to use.
- Anna Russian
- Amish Paste
- Brandywine Sudduth's
- Cherokee Purple
- Eva Purple Ball
- Green Grape