Friday, June 22, 2012

How Does Your Garden Grow? No Cockle Shells...#34

Looking out into the orchard
I picked my first baby carrots. Why I got such a kick out of this, I'm not sure. They are the tiniest of babies because my purpose was to thin out the clusters. Growing from seed, they come up in clusters so they have to be thinned in order for some to grow to normal size. But these tiny carrots will be great in salads.

Rows of carrots
The main objective of our garden this year is experimental but at the same time to feed us. What are we good at growing and what is good to grow here? Eventually, we could take part in some farmer's markets or supply a couple of organic restaurants. That's the goal of head farmer, Lance. I'm hoping there's a financial silver lining.

Already, the first relief on the food bill is reality, small but it's something. We are now able to have salad out of our garden. Green salad bowl lettuce, rainbow chard, endive, radish blend, spinach and tomatoes make a really good salad. Tonight we'll be able to add baby carrots to the mix.

The experimental side is evident when you see the list of vegetables we tried this first year. So far, at least they are growing. Some are so very small, it will take time to see if we're successful.

Rainbow chard
We have okra, Aztec spinach, asparagus, green basil, purple basil, chamomile, zuchini, tomatillo, several kinds of tomatoes, broccoli, three kinds of cabbage, wonder berry, black valentine bean, brussell sprouts, twelve kinds of peppers, cauliflower, parsley, rainbow chard, mustard Chinese tatsoi, dill, black cumin, carrots, radish blind, four kinds of onions, leek, green salad bowl lettuce, spinach, endive, several kinds of squash, potatoes, corn, peas and several kinds of beans. Then don't forget our orchard, strawberries and blackberries.

Salad lettuce and onions
Not everything will produce this year. Boo hoo to the frost that took the apricot, peach, and most of the blackberry flowers. And until everything matures, not sure how much we'll end up with on the table. When the end of harvest comes, we'll sit down and evaluate what worked and what didn't.

Another view of the orchard
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A note outside the farm news - my book Sleeping with the Lights on is the book of the month for July on Yea!


  1. Congrats Brenda & Family on an impressive menu of food!! Hoping it all produces bountiful quantities to enjoy! Book of the Month ain't nothing to sneeze at either!! Looking forward to your upcoming new release :)

  2. As always, love hearing about the journey. Now, I have a question you may have to go to Lance with. Why are the plants planted in the mounds vs. in the lower part, between the rows of plants? Does that make sense? I would think if you planted in the lower level of the rows, the plants would be protected(a little) from the wind. I know there is a reason for how they are planted in the mound rows, but I'd like to know why. Need to learn something new today. ;^)

    1. We are learning too. The idea is that you flood the land between the rows and the water soaks into the sides and from the bottom for the roots. But we're having a terrible time with weeds in between. Lance just found out today about another way to water and we could plant on flat ground and not have near the weed problem. Except for potatoes and squash which for some reason have to be mounded. Forget why. Next year we'll be smarter!

  3. Everything looks likes it's coming along well! I love growing my own herbs. Last night I just went out and snipped some chives, dill, and oregano for our potatoes. I love it! (Although I have to say, my dill isn't coming in very well this year...yours looks much better!)

    Enjoy the fruits of your labor.