Sunday, July 27, 2008

Kitchen Garden Log

This is the 5th batch of beans. Not bad. Cukes are producing nicely as well. 4 this week - that's all we can keep up with. About 4 feet square of garden 'footprint' due to the wire tower. Cuke started from seed produced BEFORE the purchased plants.

This is a mixture of German Red (smaller heads), Inchelium (larger) and miscellaneous garlics that I pulled up around the yard. Some of those are from grocery store garlic that was planted years ago. I think that the German Red has the most flavor, but the heads are about 1/2 as large as the Inchelium.

Inchelium Red Garlic. This was very productive. Most is hanging in a dry basement room.

White Potato Onion = heirloom multiplier onion. I manage to save enough each year for a small crop. I would like to have a much larger crop but space is an issue. I've been saving starts and 'recycling' them into next years' onions for 6 years.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Peaches: recovery from peach leaf curl.

Garden Gold - the least affected. No peaches but now the tree has a chance for next year.

Honey babe - I thought this one was dead. It's recovering nicely, also has a chance for next year. In fact, with a complete absence of peaches, there is potential for a bumber crop. IF I can address the leaf curl problem.

Kitchen Garden Progress Notes.

Ning's beans are climbing the string trellis. The volunteer that started itself as a "winter sow" produced a small bowl of beans.

The French Yellow and Roma bush beans have been producing for 2 weeks (not pictured). This is the former garlic bed - dug them up 2 weeks ago (also not pictured). Now it's an experiment - will romas and french yellow bush beans produce if seeds are started now?

Thai pepper. Strange, both are near fig cuttings that I had given up for dead.

Cayenne pepper. One is starting to turn yellow.

The cucumbers are starting to produce. We had one last week.

Fig progress notes.

Not bad, considering I was wondering if they were dead, earlier this year. I keep thinking about removing the petite negri due to mosaic, but it has the largest NUMBER of figs. They are small - vancouver and hardy chicago are both ahead of petite negri. Lattarula's figs are BARELY visible. Documenting now to see later if this translates into actual edible figs this fall.


Petite negri

Hardy Chicago



Opuntia flowers. I was thinking about removing this cactus. It's difficult to weed around it. Especially when the weeds are thistles - double ouch! Frankly, the fruits are not great and take a lot of effort in slicing and peeling for minimal taste. The flowers only last one day, and most bloom over a period of a few days.

Still, when it does bloom, it's interesting. As the flowers age, the color changes dramatically. Interesting. Maybe I'll keep it.

Featured Blog

This is an interesting read from Iowa: "Plants are the strangest people"

Darker colors

Mixed colors with burgundy, lavender, purple, and colors that I don't know how to name.

Rose of Sharon


Malva - a weed in my garden.

Tradescantia pallida


Sunday, July 13, 2008


Sweet alyssum. Nicely fragrant. Has been re-seeding itself in containers and on the ground.

Chilian jasmine. Nicely fragrant. It hasn't been getting the TLC that it needs, but manages to survive.

A white-flowered sedum. Very hardy, extremely easy to grow, prevents weeds, stays compact, can be spread over a large area wtih no-effort cuttings. In the winter, I just cut off pieecs and stick them into the ground. That's all.

Pascali. One of the all-time winners. It still hasn't settled in here. I'm not giving it a lot of care, either. So far not much fragrance.

I think that this rose is called Jennifer. It's a bit like the variety 'popcorn'. Very hardy. The catalog claimed so fragrant you can smell it at a distance. Not.

Trumpet lily. Not perfectly white, but the only white lily that I have blooming right now. I can't tell if it's fragrant.

Huimingbird fun

The hummers are visiting regularly. Sometimes there are several.
My hand isn't steady enough for a perfect shot.
They are fun to watch. The especially like the crocosmia.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Today's Green Change

Daniel's "before".

Ning's "before" = Daniel's "after".

Ning's "after".

For me, bike is absolutely better, but long hours make it impossible.
Ning has a much longer commute the improved milage will have a big impact.
The bumper sticker was mine already.

tomato log

Tomato heights - randomly selected

Lemon Boy 38" and 42"
Ponderosa Red 22 "
Sweet 100 32" adn 34"
Most of the rest appear to be in the high 20s to low 30s.

Sunday, July 06, 2008


The yarden does not have a 'theme'. Maybe organic, or diverse, or multifunctional, or love of nature. But no 'landscape' or 'design' theme (sorry HGTV. actually, not sorry). Still, sometimes there is a 'momentary theme'. Currently it could be 'berries'. I noticed that there was a lot of yellow in these pictures, so today it's 'yellow'. That's realizing that there are lots of colors all over the place. Especially green. But today, we'll stick with yellow.

Unknown yellow rose.


Yellow Sahin's Clivia, out of season but blooming nicely.


David Austin rose, Happy Child.

Tomato "Sweet 100"

Sedum with yellow flowers.

Yellow leaf sedum.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Fig Progress Notes

Almost all of the fig branches are at the 5-leaf point where I remove the tips. The earlier branches are responding with embryonic figs. There is hope for the future! This one is Hardy Chicago and seems to be the earliest to start main crop this year.

Berry time

Strawberry peak season.

Raspberries too.

Here is are my biased opinions regarding raspberries: These highly expensive, delicate, very delicious fruits are very easy to grow and worth having in the organic yard. These came from what were originally 2 plants that were basically sticks about 1 foot long; and one more that invaded under the fence from a neighbor. They are fairly trouble free so far, in the 4th year that I have grown them. They produce about 1 bowl, as pictured, daily, and have done so for 2 weeks. They'll probably continue for about 2 more weeks, and the current canes will be worn out. New canes have already grown in their midst, and they'll start bearing late summer for about another month. So, every day I get to eat hand-fulls of a fruit that I would not have bought due to the high cost at the grocery store.

If I was smarter, I would have planted them with an underground barrier, like the bamboo, since they have their own idea about where they want to grow. Maybe I'll work on that this winter.

Cherry Trimming

Gradually, this tree is recovering from a "flat top haircut" that it was subjected to before we bought the house. Each summer I remove dead branches, and a few crossing branches, keeping to a "bowl" shape with open center. A couple of larger branches have died - it might be a losing battle.

I like to leave spurs on the sides of big branches, which result in tufts of flowers in the spring without obscuring the aged branch structure. These spurs result from prining suckers back to short stems with a few leaves.

Cat Body Language

She was found homeless, feral, and malnourished. Not any more. Initially we named her "George W. Bush". The only thing that she answers to is "kitty kitty kitty.". Her body language has many words. All translate to "me".