Grit Blogs > Sassy and Sweet - Life on the Farm

A Garden Update

A photo of Anna WightI thought it might be time for a quick garden update!

The garden (containers, raised beds, and rows) all got a late start this year. But I am determined to make something of it – even with central Texas heat!

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First of all, the cucumbers! They're growing, and even producing fruit!

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There are fruits of all sizes on the plants -- some are near harvest size, some itty bitty, and some in between. Much of the vine has small cucumbers just starting out. I am so pleased with the progress of the two plants we have growing that I put a few more seeds in the ground for a later harvest. Hopefully we'll have plenty of cucumbers; I would like to give a couple of pickling recipes a try.

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A few weeks ago I put in another row of beans (pole, and bush). They're coming in nicely. I'm looking forward to fresh picked green beans for supper. I recently purchased a FoodSaver, and plan to freeze the beans we don't eat immediately. With nearly 50' of beans planted, I hope we have LOTS of beans to harvest!

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There is one section of the bean row (one week younger than the others) where I continue to battle the armadillo. Each night, he turns over 6-12" of soil. Each morning, I put the soil back in place. Thankfully he has only turned a couple of plants... although, I wonder if he has helped himself to a couple of seeds – I am suspect of a "gap" in the bean plants. It's the only section of the garden he has bothered. I'm hoping as the plants fill in, he moves on to other areas of the farm (just not the garden).

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This is the first year I've attempted to grow melons. So far, they look like they're doing alright. I wasn't sure they would do well being planted in a container. I've even spotted a few small melons on the vine! How exciting!

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A few weeks ago I put some pumpkin seeds in the ground. The Big Max plants are growing nicely, and so are the small decor pumpkin plants. I planted a few other varieties, and hope to get at least a couple of pumpkins off the vines. Unfortunately, the area I created the pumpkin mounds in gets a bit more shade than I expected this time of year. But even so, they're able to soak up the afternoon and evening sun and seem to be doing just fine.

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I put some zucchini squash plants in for a late summer harvest, and just put a few more seeds in the ground, too. I really had to mulch the mounds to keep the hot sun from drying out the soil too quickly. It took the plants a bit of time to settle in, but now they seem to be noticably larger with each day. Alan's father isn't a fan of zucchini (I think he even said something about zucchini being a "waste of good soil"), but I happen to LOVE it and think the more, the better! Even with the late start to the garden this year, I've harvested about 12 pounds of zucchini from the three larger plants I have planted in containers. Here's hoping for more, more, MORE!

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Finally, the zinnias are blooming! There is a variety of colors, and their bright, cheery faces add a sweet spot of color to the place.

Thanks for checking in on the garden with me! As always, you are invited to read more about our life on the farm.

cindy murphy
6/26/2010 5:29:25 AM

Hi, Anna. Such gorgeous photos! I've marveled at the beauty of the pictures in each of your blogs. You have an armadillo in your beans? That's kind of neat, I think....only because I live in Michigan, and the only time I've seen an armadillo was while camping in Florida as a kid. It was cute. I know, I know - cute or not, it's a nuisance. The very, very cute little bunnies ate the tops off my bean plants just as they popped out of the ground this spring. They left the successive plantings alone, though....then the moles moved in, uprooting everything in their path. Moles definitely aren't cute, except possibly to another mole. Best of gardening luck as the season progresses. Cindy ~ A Lakeside View


sweetmissdaisy
6/25/2010 11:12:05 PM

Hey Dave! Thanks for the note! I bet you could surround your salad bed with 4' or 5' half-inch hardwire (or even chicken wire)and keep the bunnies out. I've never seen a rabbit climb wire -- jump, yes... dig, yes ... but climb? I'd be surprised. You should try a couple cucumber plants, too! And maybe a bell pepper or two! You're lucky to have a local farmers market. I lived in Eugene Oregon for 10 years before moving here, the surface of the sun, and the farmers market (as well as the organic grocery markets) in Oregon spoiled me for life. It didn't even occur to me that good, fresh, organic food wasn't available like that in most places ... especially Texas, where I thought the growing season might be so much longer than other places. Boy was I surprised to find a VERY limited selection of organic produce when I moved here. In fact, produce in markets here is very "sad" when compared to other parts of the country. Makes me yearn for life in the Pacific Northwest again... all the wonderful local veggies, berries, and FRUIT!


nebraska dave
6/25/2010 10:45:19 PM

@Anna, You have such a great looking garden. Here in Nebraska nothing is being harvested yet except for the radishes, lettuce, and such. I do not have any of those in my gardens. Next year I’ll try the salad greens thing in the two expansion beds. With the wild life in the neighborhood I’ll have to fence the garden. Do you know how high the fence needs to be to keep out rabbits? I know they can dig under a fence but can they climb? I would like to have a few radishes and maybe a zucchini or two. I’m not a big fan of zucchini but it’s nice to have a casserole or two each year just for something different. Melons, corn, pumpkins, and the like will have to be from the farmer’s market as I just don’t have the room to raise such real-estate hungry plants. It’s all I can do to confine 4 tomato plants in a 4X8 bed. I hope your pickling goes terrifically well this year.