As we head into the dog days of summer, I’m hoping my tomatoes like the warm weather. As you may recall, everything got off to a bit of a slow start, but since the nitrogen infusion, things are looking much better. I’ve been picking snap peas about every third day – they’re about the only thing that was thriving even before the soil amendment. The shell peas have also been picked, and now just need to be, well, shelled. I’m curious to see how much I end up with. Of course, there’s no substitute for homegrown, fresh-picked produce, but if I can get the same amount for $5 that it takes me two months to grow… not that I would not grow them anymore, just question my sanity a little more.
We’ve also been picking lettuce semi-regularly, and the carrots and beets look to be almost ready if I want to pick some young ones for salads or whatnot. Most everything else is getting bigger daily, and I definitely need to get some trellises up for the squash – I’ve never grown squash vertically, so as with just about everything else this year, it’ll be an interesting experiment.
I have little black beetles that only eat the potato and eggplant leaves. They’re about the size of a pinhead, but also jump like fleas. I haven’t ID’d them yet, but they’re annoying little buggers, and I don’t think there’s an untouched leaf on any eggplant. Any ideas?
One learning from this year is the planting arrangement of my legumes. The way that I have them situated, the peas are kind of in front of the beans. This is fine for part of the day, but by early afternoon, the peas are shading the bush beans, which I think may be hampering their development some. Of course, the packet said the peas would reach about 4 feet tall, and they’re approaching 8 feet, which I hadn’t anticipated. In any case, next year, all the bush plants go in front of the climbers. Which I did for the most part this year, but apparently not everything.
I realized I hadn’t posted any pictures of the full spread yet, so below is the humble kitchen garden. For reference, each of the beds is 4 x 8. Next year, I’ll most likely add three more beds next to these. Gardens can never be big enough.