Monthly Archives: June 2011
As you might have guessed from the title, we harvested several heads of cabbage today from the Family of 4 Garden.
The cabbage probably could have lasted in the garden for a little longer – no, you wouldn’t normally harvest and eat 4 heads of cabbage all in the same week. But, we are planning to plant some okra and other veggies in that area, so it was getting to be time to pull the cabbage and move on.
Family of 4 Harvest
10.25 lbs of cabbage @ $0.75/lb = $7.69
0.75 lbs. of sugar snap peas (from last week) @ $7.00/lb = $5.25
Weekly Total: $12.94
Year to Date: $117.94
We’re having a bunch of kids from McConnell AFB here for a Garden Day Camp on Thursday, and we’re planning to pull onions and dig potatoes from the Family of 4 Garden with those kids. I’ll try to get pictures and harvest weights, but it might be my best estimate!
Wow – that was some interesting weather last night! The garden got about 2.8 inches of rain, and from the looks of some of the plants, a fair bit of hail as well. Nothing is in terrible shape, but there are some “Swiss cheese” plants out there!
This is probably the worst looking plant. The leaves are just a tattered mess! It is still starting to vine though, so no harm done. One of the cucumber plants did get broken off, but I think it will still be fine and send out a new shoot.
We had a fairly nice collection of gold beets when we pulled them out to make room for the Prairie Star Annuals. This is only part of the pile. They could have gotten bigger, but we were moving on to flowers!
This is what the wheelchair height garden is now populated with – lots of flowers that aren’t blooming yet. They’ll look great in a few weeks. We have them all spaced out so you can really see what the plants are supposed to look like.
Have a great weekend!
One of our other big projects in the garden this week was mulching. I had almost completely forgotten about mulching, but the Master Gardeners were on top of it!
Some of the goodness of mulch includes:
1. Cools down the soil a few degrees – this is a good thing as the summer gets hotter!
2. Keeps the soil more evenly moist – less watering, happier plants!
3. Suppresses weeds – less work for us. Hurray!
4. Helps keep disease off the plants and keeps the produce cleaner. Less spraying, washing, and rotten fruit!
If you can’t find straw, you can also use grass clippings (not treated with herbicides), leaves, compost, or wood chips.
You know how it never rains but it pours? I keep thinking we should be able to space out our projects a little more in the garden, but usually, once we are on a roll, we just keep going. We did lots of things in the garden today, so I’ll be posting about that all week.
One thing new we did this week was pruning the suckers off the heirloom tomatoes in the trial. The plants have really grown a lot, and since they are spaced a little closer together, we are taking off all the suckers below the first flower cluster.
Here’s one of the plants before its suckers get pruned off. It is definitely full and bushy, with some large suckers. Ideally, you would prune off the suckers before they get this large, because it is less shocking to the plants.
We did find flowers or buds on almost all of the heirloom tomatoes today, so I’m glad we chose the shorter day varieties!
If you are wondering why we pruned the heirlooms, there are a few good reason.
1. They are planted only 24″ apart, which is close for indeterminate plants. Pruning will help improve the airflow for these plants, reducing some of the disease pressure.
2. The heirlooms are very vigorous growers, so the pruning will help keep them under control a bit more.
3. Yes, the suckers would produce some tomatoes, but by removing the suckers, the plant will put more energy into the other fruit, so the other tomatoes might be a little larger. The total yield for each plant will be virtually the same.
The garden sure has changed a lot this week, especially since the weather has been pretty consistently warm.
The heirloom tomatoes are almost unrecognizable. They will be well past ready for another level of twine next Tuesday! They are also suckering a lot from near the base, so I think we will be pruning them next week as well. I’ll try to get pictures of that process.
More cabbage pictures! This is the cabbage in the Family of 4 Garden, so it is more in line with normal cabbage season, compared to the ‘Caraflex’ that had gotten a head start with the Garden Show (may it rest in peace).
The lavender is in full bloom, and it is much prettier in person than my pictures would show. The colors just get washed out in the bright sunlight. Hopefully we’ll have a cloudy day while it is still blooming nicely.
Have a great weekend!