I cannot believe how beautiful the weather has been the past few weeks! We finally got some rain last week (which we needed) – but otherwise we’ve had lots sunny days in the mid-60’s. It has been too nice to stay indoors for any length of time.
We’re trying out a square-foot garden this year. It seems too small to hold everything – as it’s only two 4’x8’ sections, but they say you can fit a lot more in a small area doing it this way.
I have planted peas (pole and bush), corn, lettuce, spinach, swiss chard, onions, scallions, leeks, cabbage, beans, radishes, carrots, marigolds (pest deterrent), dill, basil, parsley, cilantro, fennel, beets, sunflowers, and cantaloupe. All I have left to plant are the tomatoes, bell and hot peppers, and winter squash – which are hardening off this week.
The corn and sunflowers are there primarily to give the pole beans and peas something to climb on. Underneath the “poles”, is where the vines will go (squash and cantaloupe). I planned some areas for shorter-season plants (e.g. lettuce/spinach and radishes) next to areas that might be taken over later in the season by plants like the tomatoes and peppers.
Last year we added some more plants to our strawberry beds to fill it out a bit more. Based on the number of flowers we’re seeing, we should have a good crop. Our rhubarb (left) is already at the point where I could harvest (this picture is a couple weeks old).
Two years ago we planted our apple trees. The first year we saw one apple. Last year, one tree had several apples – but the Honeycrisp had not a one. All the area orchard trees are in blossom already … and we’re seeing nothing. Hopefully ours are just late bloomers, because we really want to see some apples this year – from both trees!
Mid-summer last year we picked up some plum trees on clearance. Since it was past spring, we missed seeing the wonderful, highly fragrant flowers that they produce – so it was a delight to see and smell them this year. With all those blossoms and the dozens of bees we saw buzzing around, we hope they are well fertilized so we’ll see some plums this year!
The grape vines are surviving - just. We figure they’ll start producing about the time we decide to move! I have really wanted to plant a blueberry bush – and may still this year; but that will take a couple of years before we see a harvest.
In addition to our own plantings, I’m hoping we have a good crop of wild black raspberries again this year. Black raspberry jam is like gold in our household – it’s tough to find in the stores, so if we can make it, so much the better. The only jam that disappears faster is strawberry… but I think that’s because we look at BR jam as a special treat.
We also have blackberries and gooseberries on our property, but we haven’t done anything with those yet. We only had one good year for morel mushrooms – the year after the oak tree fell over; unfortunately we haven’t seen any since.
What’s growing in your yard?