Monthly Archives: July 2009

Friday PhotoEssay

CenterpieceThis container is the “centerpiece” of our container garden. It has really come on nice in the past week!

African Blue BasilThis African Blue Basil is a beautiful addition to any garden. It is almost too pretty to be edible!

Squash BloomsThe winter squash are finally starting to bloom and set some squashes!

Ornamental PeppersThese ornamental peppers are providing a great display!

Swiss Chard ForestThe Swiss Chard is looking great as well. Now if it only tasted as good as it looks…

Lattice Garden in bloomThe cannas in the lattice garden are starting to show off their blooms.

Have a great weekend!

Fall Vegetable Gardens

Bean PlantingIt may seem kind of crazy, since it isn’t even August yet (almost!), but it is time to start thinking about our fall vegetable garden in the Demo Garden. We had some kids from a day camp plant another round of beans last week, and then one of the Master Gardeners filled in some of the holes on Tuesday.

Since we harvested the carrots and beets in the Family of 4 Garden (and the onions a few weeks back), we have some space there for fall veggies. We’ll also see how the tomatoes and peppers do – we may pull them out some time in September to plant another lettuce or spinach crop.

The Salad Garden is fairly open for planting as well. We have some cucumbers, arugula, and bull’s blood beets planted right now. There’s also a very young (2 weeks old) planting of lettuce and arugula. There’s lots of space for planting fall salad vegetables…we just have to decide what we’re going to plant!

Here are some things that could be planted for fall vegetables in Kansas:

Vegetables to Plant in Early August

  • Beets
  • Bok Choy
  • Broccoli (transplants)
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower (transplants)
  • Fall Radishes (Such as daikon, etc.)
  • Kale
  • Swiss Chard

Vegetables to Plant from Late August to Mid-September

  • Bok Choy
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • Mesclun mixes and other salad greens
  • Spinach
  • Spring Radishes
  • Turnips

Bugs, Bugs, and more Bugs

Okay, in the interest of accuracy, this post should be titled “Insects, Insects, and more Insects.” That just doesn’t have the same ring to it though, does it?

Anyway, if you haven’t noticed, we seem to have a bumper crop of insects this year, and they are all over the place! Nothing seems to be immune!

Aphids galoreI turned over a cucumber leaf yesterday to find this sight…thousands of little black aphids coating the leaf! There were aphids everywhere. With this population of aphids, we decided to go straight to the “big guns” for insecticides and pulled out the permethrin. Neem oil would barely make a dent in this population of aphids!

There seems to be another generation of cabbage loopers on the Brussels Sprouts, so they got sprayed as well.

Lettuce caterpillarAs if that wasn’t enough, we have some friendly caterpillars enjoying our summer lettuce crop as well. As you can see from all the frass, they’ve really been enjoying our lettuce.

Then I go over to prune back the black raspberries a little bit, and what do I find?

GrasshopperThat’s right, a big grasshopper! Luckily, I only saw the one grasshopper, so I’m not too concerned. Hopefully he won’t bring a bunch of his friends along to the garden next time!

Simple Salads to Try

If you are looking for some new ways to cook your garden vegetables, here’s an article from the New York Times to check out: 101 Simple Salads for Summer.

Bountiful Garden Harvest

Garden BountyCan you tell what we were up to in the Demonstration Garden today? You guessed it! We were harvesting like crazy! Because of Tomato Day, we had left several things in the garden that normally would have been harvested earlier.

Let’s start with the Family of 4 Garden:

We have quite a haul from the Family of 4 Garden today! We harvested 2 lbs of peppers (Sweet Banana, Padron, Jalapeno) and 4 ¾ lbs of tomatoes. WePile of Beets also pulled all the remaining carrots and beets in order to prepare for replanting in a couple weeks. We had 2 ¾ lbs of carrots and 5 ½ lbs of beets.

2 lbs of peppers @ $1.59/lb = $3.18

4 ¾ lbs of tomatoes @ $2.00/lb = $9.50

2 ¾ lbs of carrots (about 2 bunches) @ $2.00/bunch = $4.00

5 ½ lbs of beets (about 4 bunches) @ $2.50/bunch = $10.00

This week’s harvest is worth $26.68! That brings our running total for the year to $145.52.

From the rest of the garden:

The cherry tomatoes, as usual, were loaded! We ended up with about 4 gallon Roma Tomato Pilebags full of cherry tomatoes! The roma tomatoes are also coming on strong. We had quite a tomato pile on our demo table! We are picking them slightly under-ripe, since we have some friendly squirrels Eaten Tomatoesthat are enjoying the tomatoes as well…

We harvested about half a bushel of eggplant, which is about half a bushel too much, in my opinion. All 3 types of eggplant are doing beautifully, despite getting planted late. I guess in the interest of the blog, I’ll have to try to find an eggplant recipe that I can actually tolerate. And don’t recommend fried eggplant – if you have to fry it to make it edible, then it really isn’t edible!