Wednesday, July 16

Oh She Grows: It's becoming a plant monster!

It's been a week and a half since my last update. I know, every time I update I say it's growing like crazy and I'm obviously thinking that it might 'plateau'...but it's not. The plant forest continues to explode after every day of heavy rain (followed by super heat) that we have. To say square-foot-gardening is 'intensive planting' is an understatement. It's should be called explosive planting. Despite that and things looking over crowded, everything is doing super well and produce awesomely!

Lettuce is doing well, especially with the odd day of cooler weather to give it a break from the heat. This is first and second planting above here. Third planting just sprouted. It's been great not having to buy lettuce. I just pick what we need as we need it to get the most out of the plants.

My peppers have tons of blossoms and are starting to set fruit. Above are my mini-bell peppers. They are going to have so many per plant. Below are my chili peppers.

My pepper plants were the one set of plants that looked somewhat organized in my garden, but even they have gone rouge and grown so much! The tallest, the chili plants, would have to be at least 2 feet high. They are going to need stakes this week. In between are the pansy plants that I started from seed and planted between then, to try and attract pollinators to the garden.

The tomato plants are the biggest monsters of the garden. They have tons of blossoms, and have already set a lot of fruit. Above are the beefstake tomatoes. Below are the Roma's - which are setting the most - some have over 10 tomatoes started on them, plus more blossoms - which is perfect for my plant of making sauce / salsa this season. The cherry tomatoes have fruit set too, but it's all in the jungle and I wasn't able to get a good shot of them. I did have to encourage pollination on these plants - so many blossoms fell off from failed pollination, so I purchased a cheep electric toothbrush and gave them all a little buzz to self pollinate them.

My second planting of carrots are doing well, and my other carrots are recovering from the Earwigs now that we have them under control. I'm hoping to have some carrots to pull soon, but these aren't that big yet and have a ways to go.

My kale is lovely as ever! I harvest a little here and there, but I'm thinking soon I'll be able to take a lot more as these mature more. I love it in salads as a green, and blended in my smoothies :) The green beans are doing really well too - they have lots of blossoms, but have lots of little beans starting too. I hope I get my order from Amazon for my pots and such sooner than later so that I have it in time to freeze these guys!

This is my back corner potato-broccoli-zucchini-cucumber mess. But it's a productive mess.

This is my third head of broccoli growing - it's due soon. Maybe even tonight. So far, we have gotten two heads of broccoli - not bad. I never thought when I started these from seed that I would get any honestly.

My first zucchini blossom was open today too - I hope it takes and I get a vegetable from it!

I'm still having troubles with the pollination of my pickling cucumbers. I have gotten some fruit from them still, and here are some growing. But so many of the female starts are failing. I try to help them a long with a paint brush transferring pollen from male to female flower - but I think I might look into a self-pollinating variety next year. I just don't see bees around, and that's a big problem for these guys.

And some of my harvest:

I must say, I am loving gardening. We have harvested almost 3 lbs of food so far this season, and we haven't even gotten to the bigger, heavier stuff yet like peppers, tomatoes and potatoes. :)

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