Monday, May 29, 2017

Peppers in polytunnel, Potatoes flowering, & garden harvest of radish, swiss chard, collards

I replaced the broccoli and cabbage that was eaten by rabbits with pepper transplants. The pepper plants are still small, but I figured they would thrive in the compost heap beside the potatoes. I started the peppers back in the middle of March (15th to be exact.) So once the peppers get settled into their new home, they will quickly grow in size and start flowering. The potatoes in the grow bags have started to flower. I believe they have been flowering for a week now. My grandma says after they are done flowering is when you harvest the potatoes.

So I will continue to update on the progress of the gardens. Below are pictures of one of my gardens with the peppers and potatoes, and the last picture is a harvest out of another garden that is growing a mix of greens. 

potatoes in handmade grow bags

peppers in polytunnel

Sunday, May 28, 2017

I come home to find HUGE VEGETABLES in the garden

For Memorial weekend, I went to visit my grandmother for a couple of days. We decorated my grandfather's grave and his family members' graves as well.
When I came back home last night, I rushed to the garden to see the progress on the plants. And sure enough after all of this rainfall, the vegetables had doubled their size within days.

Here are some pictures I took of the vegetables plants in the garden.

crookneck squash

row of crookneck squash

row of zucchini & crookneck

squash growing in compost

rows of tomatoes


row of pumpkins

row of cucumbers

row of cucumbers

melons & cucumbers in compost pockets with trellis
melons, acorn & butternut squash along pallets

Swiss chard


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Honeysuckle jelly + vertical trellis hugelkultur garden & More potatoes in growbags

This past week has been very aromatic outside with the honeysuckles blooming. When the wind blows, the scent is carried all over the yard, especially after a rain it is quite a lovely feeling. Because I have lots of honeysuckle growing all over the yard, I wanted to try making the jelly for the first time. I used a recipe I found at Taylor Made Homesteading which goes as follows: Honeysuckle jelly made with 4 cups of petals without green stem or leafs. First boil 4 cups of water and take off of heat when it begins to boil. Then add the petals to steep for 45 minutes with a lid. After 45 minutes, strain the petals from the liquid. With 2 cups of the remaining liquid, boil with 4 cups of sugar (according to the recipe here) but I only used 2 1/2 cups of sugar with 1/4 cup of lemon juice. Let boil and stir to dissolve the sugar, then add 1 package of liquid pectin and stir for a remaining 2 minutes. Then can the ingredients as you usually would jellies and jams. This recipe made 4 half pints for me. I make sure to sterilize the rings and jars and new lids, then fill a pot with 1 inch of water and put the honeysuckle liquid in the jars and seal the jars with the lids. Boil the jars in the water for 5 minutes, and afterwards let cool on a towel.

Other things I have been working on in the last few days is sewing more potato grow bags. I believe there were 10 bags already sewn that James put together, and with those and 8 that I sewed myself, I end up gluing 18 bags and filling them with compost to plant potatoes. Also, I sewed some carrot seed within the potatoes. The potato grow bags in previous pictures were placed at my grandparents' house, and I figured with these I would place the grow bags at my house so I could distribute the compost around the garden here.

The potatoes at my grandparents' is looking tall and healthy.

With the compost, I spread on two flower beds, in the potato grow bags, around the fruiting blueberry bushes, and spread a thin layer on the squash/zucchini, cucumber, leafy green, and melon/squash hugelkultur mounds.

Additionally, I dug holes for tomato transplants and filled the holes with compost and posted the tomatoes with tobacco sticks.

In another location I dug holes and filled with compost to sew more melon seeds tomorrow.

Also today I put up fencing in three rows of the garden to trellis the cucumbers, melons, pumpkins, and artichoke. 

And of course, I got another radish harvest...