Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Garden Updates

It's been a while since I've done a Garden Update! Here's a new bed being prepped, still lots of garden trimmings being thrown in, and layered with soil and compost. The corn and bean bed is doing ok, the corn didn't get as tall as I had hoped, and they have already flowered.
Another angle on the same area, in the foreground are strawberry planted in pots, on the right of it are the corn and bean bed, behind the strawberries are the Kabocha pumpkins all sprawled out. Behind the pumpkins are the tomato bed with Amish Paste and Peacevine Red Cherry toms. To the right of the tomatoes are the cucumber/zuke bed that has been mostly turned over and I planted some more tomatoes.
Here are some Amish Paste tomatoes still green
Valencia oranges are ripening
A view of some of the rear raised beds
Okra blossoms
Chard is still happy because the Mikan (mandarin) tree gives them shade in the hottest times of the day.
The sweet potato and okra bed
Alma Paprikas
Cute little fiery orange flowers on the edible canna (canna edulis)
The "Salada Musume" gobo (burdock) had a rough start having their leaves constantly eaten by snails and night time caterpillars (don't know what those pests are called) Notice that the shady side of the bed has larger healthier leaves. Since they are Japanese plants in origin, I'm guessing that they don't like our SoCal scorching sun.
Mangoes, YES! I picked on small one off. It was about 4" long since it wasn't growing as fast as the others, brought it indoors and placed it on a ripening banana and lo and behold it ripened up enough for us to eat it! It was a bit tart, but my son and I loved it! Can't wait for the regular sized fruit when they are ready to pick!
Blackberry bramble. There's a small Sapote tree we grew from seed, on the bottom left side of the pic by the blue basil. Can you spot it? It's been growing really well this year with the extra nitrogen rich compost. 
Blackberries ripening

Chaya Spinach tree (Cnidoscolus chayamansa) blossoming this year!

Herb Garden
Tree Collard/Kale
This bed had kabocha pumpkin, black radish going to seed, cilantro going to seed and Komatsuna greens. It's all done now, so I chopped up the dead dry branches from the black radish and cilantro and currently drying the remaining leaves from the komatsuna.
Taro root has established itself and is really taking off. Before it takes over the garden, my Mom wanted to plant the Bitter melon vine(the pale green plant). on the right of that are the Chinese Yams (dioscorea batatas)


Mr. H. said...

Your garden looks to be flourishing and I love that you grew a tree from seed that is now producing fruits...really neat. Congrats on the mango.:)

Anne said...

Heya AJK! If I have luck with getting the wild bergamot seeds, I will happily send you some! I'm gathering up alfalfa seeds and several others too. Alfalfa is actually a cute flowering plant that you could easily pop into the background of a garden. (purple flowers.. even if you mow it down it comes back.) It's from the old fields that hasn't been resown in well over a decade.

Happy your gardens are doing so well! It has been crazy out here.. but it just makes me more determined for next year!

What plans do you have for all of those oranges? (Wish I could trade you pears for them!!)

AJK said...

Hi Anne, Thanks for the offer! I was really considering purchasing organic Alfalfa just because they have recently approved the GMO alfalfa and I was seething over it. Perhaps the only regions where they may remain organic *might* be in the city limits since there aren't many who grow alfalfa in the city since most of the crop is grown for feed stock.

I do wish we COULD trade your pears for oranges! We LOVE pears and we lost our only pear tree (it was Asian) to fire-blight last year. :-( Although, I think such a long distance trade would be against our intentions of growing local?

I'm sorry about your HOT gardening situation. We're having hot humid temps here too. Normally we get hot and DRY.

I'm going to copy paste this and put it in one of your comments with my email so we can exchange addresses and get a seed exchange going! :-D

Anne said...

The wild bergamot just finished flowering.. so the wait is on for them to finish those seeds! I'm still gathering alfalfa seeds (I am a dork and I'm trying to get a variety going. Some of the flowers are near white to an intense purple.. with every shade in between!) Shelling those little pods is taking awhile (a legume.. they make little cork screw pods. They also set seed at various stages, so I'm repeatedly checking them to pick the dried pods.) The neighbors never have gone to alfalfa (corn, soybean rotation). The next closest is a few miles away with a lot of acres of thick forest between us.

I will update you on the bergamot seeds when they are ready!

Vicki said...

My family is trying to grow much of our own food. We live in Yucaipa, CA (almost a neighbor of yours). Was wondering how much property you have. We are also growing for our animals. You have a great looking garden.

AJK said...

Hi Vicki, Thanks for visiting my blog! Our property is a typical city plot. The total land area including the house is approximately 1/5 of an acre. That in it's self is small, but since the house takes up about 1900 sq ft, I'm guessing the food production area is about 1/12th of an acre. We are currently only producing veggies and fruits. We'd LOVE to get into the protein dept. Funds are tight however. Let's keep in touch! How large is your growing area?

Vicki said...

Would love to keep in touch. We live on 1/2 acre. Have two houses on that though. My daughter, son-in-law and their 6 (soon to be 7) kids live in the big house and my husband and I live in the little house. She homeschools her kids. We have about 22 hens, 2 roosters, 6 silkies, 7 turkeys, 13 breeding rabbits. Hope to get into goats soon. Luckily, our neighbors are understanding. We have figs, lemons, grapefruits, oranges (navel and valencia), tangeloes, cuties, limes, plums, cherries, apples, peaches, nectarines, boysenberries, blackcap raspberries, grapes, blueberries, strawberries, and veggies. Our place is in a constant state of growth. Tried out a community garden this year and are pulling most things back for the fall since many people don't grow organic. Right now our home garden needs a lot of love. We are hoping to get to it soon and get our fall garden going strong.

You have a nice place. Know that it takes a lot of time and energy. Keep up the good work.

AJK said...

Hi Vicki,

Wow, what a wonderful family, 7! I had 4 siblings. If you don't mind, I'd love to come and see your place! I'm really interested in acquiring some rabbits. Would you consider selling a buck & doe? I don't have a set up for them yet, but if I can get an ok from you to sell, we can build one.
You're welcome to visit our little garden too if you don't mind the drive.

If you'd like to let me know your email (I won't post it) I'd like to continue this conversation off the blog. Thanks!