Monday, July 11, 2016

The Garden As of July 11, 2016

Here are new pictures of the garden.  Here is an overview to the North.
Our pinto beans and weeds in the middle of the row, specifically lamb's quarters, which you will see up close below (I did weed them out after I took this picture, but thought it more realistic to show a picture with weeds in it :)).  Our garden soil was full of lamb's quarter seeds and at first I had a hard time keeping up with them (the garden was covered in the stuff), next year won't be so bad since I harvested most of them before they went to seed AND the garden is mulched better now.
A close up of the North end where the potatoes, sunflowers, buckwheat is planted, among other things.
Black oil sunflowers.  We will harvest the seeds for eating.
I thinned the carrots and they are looking very nice. Carrots and celery are your litmus test for your garden and if they taste bitter or tasteless, something is missing or needs to be altered in your garden soil.  The one I ate tasted quite sweet, so I think we are heading in the right direction.  Plus, you can see the soil is nice and airy since they are longer without hitting rocks or hard soil. We put all the bedding from the barn last Fall on the garden (ok, I did not do that, thank you Steve and the McVicker clan, I was in bed with my broken ankle mending) and then put a layer of very nice compost on it this Spring that had been bedding pulled out of a barn about 7 years ago.  I'm going to get a soil test done this Fall, but so far so good.
Here is one row of our broccoli. If you click on the picture you can see a different color of green under the broccoli leaves.  We do a lot of companion planting and the broccoli is shading the lettuce a bit that is growing underneath it.
Here is our buckwheat which is on the North side.  Besides growing for our needs of buckwheat flour it is also a wind block on that side.  It is an herb so it is a very good alternative grain if you cannot do gluten. We make a lot of pancake batter with buckwheat. Yum!
This is a close-up of lamb's quarters, which covered the garden, it is also edible.  We ate a lot of it in salads this Spring and cooked like spinach.
Another example of companion planting, horseradish in the middle of potato plants. They are all very happy together. 
The same picture as below, but the radish flowers have taken over.  I think I over did it on the radish, which protects the squash from the striped cucumber beetles and those pumpkins are surely covering that teepee.

You know the one thing I forgot to photograph is the asparagus in the midst of the tomatoes, basil, borage, calendula, parsley, etc. (you know, that companion planting thing, in some places I went over board with it). The asparagus is only about 6 inches tall because it's in its first year, but they are such cute little ferny plants. :) I just love this picture. You have the dill in the back, the tomato in its cage with a stick as its post holding it in place (thanks Steve for your ingenuity and resourcefulness) and the borage in the front. is good to have a producing garden again.
Here is our fence to keep out the deer and when I get a chance to keep in the ducks, as they can eat the bugs for 3 days at a time before they start eating my plants, or at least that is what I have read. Thanks in large part to Steve for the fencing. It is very nice to look at as well. :)
The well constructed gate on the South side.

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