May Garden – this was before my husband so wisely suggested we buy a sprinkler
Our garden is alive and well. It’s looking a little out of hand right now but I’ve come to learn that is to be expected when planting things in small groupings. The method I used is similar to square foot gardening. I’ve been training the tomatoes to grow upward by wrapping a string around the leading vine and pinching off any suckers before they can grow too big. That prevents the tomatoes from becoming too bushy. However, because I don’t have time to be out there every day – maybe every 2 to 3 days – the tomato plants are certainly pretty bushy now.
I’ve also been training the cucumbers to grow up a trellis that I’ve constructed at the end of the raised bed. This has proven a bit difficult because this cucumber plant is growing quite fast. Its cucumbers are pretty tasty, though. I may even try my hand at pickling some of them. I did forget to thin my radishes, beets, and carrots out, so who knows what they’ll end up looking like. I actually probably dug up my radishes too soon. The leaves were really large so I thought they were ready but the actual radishes were quite tiny.
June Garden – with one of my little helpers
Aside from eating the lettuce (before it bolted), cucumbers and tomatoes raw in salads, I have tried a couple of recipes with my harvest. I planted a new-to-me pepper called shishito. The other night was my first time trying them and they were awesome! I sauted them in a pan on high heat to sear them. Then, I tossed them in a little soy sauce (gluten free tamari, actually). So good! I hear Trader Joe’s sells these already cleaned, bagged and ready to go. I highly recommend you try them. This recipe looks simple enough.
I also enjoyed some fried green tomatoes, which remind me of my grandmother who was from the South. She would make some a few times every summer when she lived with us. I actually didn’t like them growing up, but now I guess my tastes have evolved. I did kind of wing it, but the recipe I used was similar to this one here.
July Garden – just back from vacation & everything is still alive!
As you can see, the garden is way overgrown right now. The lettuce (bottom right of the pic) has bolted, which means it’s started to flower in order to produce seeds. This makes it extremely bitter and inedible now, but it was really good before then. I just haven’t gotten around to pulling it out. I still have to dig up the beets and carrots that share a bed with the lettuces.
The bed in the top left corner has collard greens, kale, swiss chard, and spinach. I made some collard green wraps (instead of using tortillas) using some of the smaller leaves and they were delicious. I never planted anything in the bed in the bottom left. That was because dirt can be pretty expensive and I had to lug several 40 pound bags of dirt & compost from Lowe’s myself, so the fewer the better. I thought of planting some fall crops in that one in a couple of months. I’ll see if I’m up for it.
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