Friday PhotoEssay

We are somehow back to Friday and ready for another Friday PhotoEssay. There have been some interesting developments in the garden this week.

For instance, the Jicama has FINALLY started sending out tendrils. We soaked the seeds and planted them inside what seems like eons ago, and then we transplanted them in mid-May with everything else. They had some pretty severe transplant shock, and for weeks have been sitting and not growing much. All of a sudden, it is actually starting to send out vining tendrils. They are supposed to get 10-20 feet long, so it will be interesting to see how fast they grow now that they’ve gotten a start.

This is on the ‘Cisineros Grande’ tomatillo plant. We actually have 4 plants (2 different varieties) this year, and it is amazing how much better they are doing with setting fruit when you follow the recommendations to have more than 1 plant/variety, since they don’t self-pollinate very well. This variety is supposed to be 2-3″ in diameter, hence the big husk that hasn’t split yet.

I guess this PhotoEssay is something of a mini-tour from the Mexican Garden! The squash from the Mexican garden is doing quite well, and it is just so different looking from the normal darker greens and yellows. The round is ‘Ronde de Nice’ and the oblong is ‘Sweet Gourmet.’

A gratuitous ‘Fairy’ squash blossom with the leaves in the background. I warned you that this plant is taking the place of Swiss Chard in my photography this summer.

The ‘Sunshine’ Kabocha squash is doing well and maturing rapidly. It isn’t ripe yet. It should be a bright scarlet at that point. I noticed that one of these walked off on us last weekend. I understand that in an open, public garden, produce will walk away. However, it is really frustrating when people pick unripe produce, because then it is just a waste. I am always tempted to put up some kind of snarky sign, but that probably isn’t in keeping with the welcoming atmosphere!

This is the Cardinal Basil in the Edible Flowers garden. Usually we want to keep the flowers trimmed off to keep the plants producing tender, flavorful leaves. On this variety, we are going for the ornamental characteristic of the flowers. Basil flowers are typically tall, skinny, individual stalks. This is a much more organized cluster, and it should get bigger yet. Now if only that edible hibiscus will hurry up and flower…

Have a great weekend! Head on out to the Sedgwick County Fair in Cheney if you are looking for something to do!

About Rebecca

I'm a Horticulture Educator with Sedgwick County Extension, a branch of K-State Research and Extension, located in Wichita, KS. I teach about fruits, vegetables, and herbs.

Posted on July 13, 2012, in PhotoEssays and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Cindy Vadakin

    How about a sign saying, “Welcome to our teaching garden. Produce is to be harvested and catalogued by Demo Garden Staff only. Thank you!” or something to that effect.
    Even though it was very hot today, I really enjoyed walking around and checking out the garden. It looks great and a number if volunteers have worked very hard to make it that way. Thanks a bunch!

  2. Glad to see your jicama is growing – here’s hoping for long vines!

    We have occasional theft problems in our demo garden too. Once someone dug up half a row of potatoes. We do have a small “no picking” sign and will be putting up a larger one, but it doesn’t deter those who think public gardens are their property. Maybe for the wasted non-ripe produce problem you could have signs with a picture of the mature fruit? Is that aiding and abetting? 🙂

    • Well, we have labels that describe the fruit at maturity, but that’s probably not as effective as a picture would be. 🙂 We’ve considered signs, but we need to keep it welcoming too.

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