April 28, 2016

Garlic Planted in Styrofoam Containers and Bamboo Trellises

Bamboo trellises planted with pole green beans, cucumber, pole dry beans, luffa, and bitter melon.

The garden is huge. I didn't realize how much my husband had expanded the garden until I started putting up the trellises. It was actually my husband's idea to put the trellises alongside our neighbors garage. The neighbor tends to have lots and lots of outdoor parties where they sit outside and watch sports on t.v., and this will shield our backyard from view so I can garden in relative privacy.

And that's an alley running along our backyard perpendicular to the bamboo trellises. Okra will be planted along the alley side, which will shield the tomato beds from passersby. It looks like I'll have ten long beds, each about 4 feet wide available for planting.
Garlic. I had planted 4 styrofoam containers with different varieties of garlic. Two were planted with unknown grocery store garlic and the other two were planted with garlic I had purchased from a seed company. All of the unknown grocery store garlic died during the winter, only one thin waif-like stalk remains of those doomed garlic.
But as you can see the 2 varieties of fancy garlic I purchased online are doing ok in their separate styrofoam containers.

April 27, 2016

Pole Bean, Cucumbers, and Luffa Varieties

A squirrel dug out most of pepper/eggplant tray that was on the porch. Seedlings and just germinated seeds were flung about so there's no telling what is what. Ah well. At least most of them survived but I'll take it as a sign, and will get them in the ground as soon as possible.

I got the pole beans, cucumbers, and luffa seeded under their trellises right before some rain hit yesterday. The way the wind picked up and thunder clouds rolled in, made me immediately think tornado. But luckily it was just a fast moving thunderstorm. Ten trellises were seeded which leaves only 2 trellises to be planted with more loofa and bitter melon. The way it works out there'll be 3 trellises devoted to dry pole beans, 3 trellises for cucumbers, 3 for pole green beans, and 3 for luffa.

I was hoping to get more planting done today but it rained buckets and buckets till the whole backyard flooded. Since it'll be awhile before the ground can dry enough to plant the broccoli and Brussels sprout seedlings, I went ahead and potted them up into individual containers so they'll have more room to grow.

Dry pole beans:
Good Mother Stallard
Spagna Bianco
Borlotto Lingua di Fuoco

Cucumbers (using up ancient seeds):
Straight Eight
Japanese Long
Sweet Success
Sweeter Yet
White Wonder
Suhyo Long

Green pole beans:
Meraviglia di Venezia

Chinese Okra angled luffa
Bonanza angled loofa
Extra Long angled loofa
Smooth Boy, smooth luffa
Summer Cross, smooth luffa

Bitter melon:
Green Giant

April 24, 2016

Garden Tilled, Go!! And 2016 Broccoli and Brussels Sprouts Varieties.

 Freshly tilled and mulched.
Broccoli and Brussels sprout seedlings.

My  husband rototilled Tuesday, April 19th, to get ahead of the rain. The soil tilth was at that perfect place, still soft and fluffy with just the right moisture content and even better, there were tons of worms running around in the garden. On Saturday my husband picked up a couple trailer loads of mulch which the city makes from tree waste, at $5 a truckload it's a real bargain.

This week I plan on planting out seedlings for 7 varieties of broccoli, and 4 varieties of Brussels sprouts. Seeding bush beans, summer squash, and zucchini are also at the top of the list.

Broccoli and Brussels sprouts don't like to be root bound so it's the perfect time actually, I'll be putting them in the ground instead of potting them up.

Broccoli varieties:
Bay Meadows
Di Cicco

Brussels sprout varieties:
Long Island

Only Catskill Brussels sprouts didn't come up.

April 23, 2016

Tomato Varieties and Pepper Germination Issues

 Tomato Seedlings
Broccoli, Brussels sprout, and very sparsely germinated pepper seedlings.

I haven't been blogging as of late because our little one is finally letting us do things like reading. Since it has been years since I've read a book, I have been devouring them these last couple months. Oh how I missed you, books!!

So blogging and seed starting has definitely taken a back seat to my shameful insatiable consuming bookish needs. At least the seedlings are still getting watered everyday.

The peppers haven't been germinating. I started them in a peat moss based seed starting medium and that always seems to give me problems, but at least 5 varieties managed to germinate out of 11 types that were seeded. Usually I use coconut coir to start peppers and those hard to start seeds like asparagus.

Peppers and eggplant were seeded March 14th. Tomatoes and Italian eggplants were seeded April 2nd.

Below are lists of varieties that have sprouted which I will try to keep updated.

Pepper varieties:
Aji Lemon Drop
Corno Rosso
Carmagna Rosso
Fish Pepper
Jimmy Nardello
Joe E. Parker
Numex Big Jim
Santa Fe

Eggplant varieties:
Cambodian Green Giant
Tonda Bianca Sfumata di Rosa
Thai Long Purple
Violetta Lunga

I went ahead and re-seeded pepper and eggplant varieties that haven't germinated yet, so fingers crossed.

Tomato varieties:
Abe Lincoln
Ananas Noire
Aunt Ruby's German Green
Hill Billy Flame
Big Rainbow
Big Zebra
Black Brandywine
Black Krim
Black Prince
Black Tula
Box Car Willie
Break O Day
Celebrity (F1 hybrid)
Cherokee Purple
Chocolate Stripes
Cosmonaut Volkov
Cour di Bue
Fat Cherry
Sun Gold
Black Cherry
Dark Brandywine
Djena Lee's Golden Girl
Golden Siberia
Granny Cantrell
Henderson Pink Ponderosa
Jersey Giant
Kelloggs Breakfast
Lilac Giant
Money Maker
Mortgage Lifter
Pantano Romensco
Paul Robeson
Pilcer Vesy
Pink Berkley Tie Dye
Pink Oxheart
Prudens Purple
Red Pear
San Marzano Redorta
Yellow Brandywine