The garden has been really enjoying these hot days with rainy nights. And, the kids are at a stage this summer where I find I can head to the garden for an hour at a time here and there, once or twice a week--which is huge compared to previous years. Everything-- aside from the broccoli, which is always an epic failure (epic is the new favorite word at our house, particularly among the 9 yr. old set) is looking good, very few pests, and yet I still feel like we're not getting much food. I think it has to do with learning to plant things closer together in our raised beds, and learning to feed/mulch things at the right time to give them a boost. Even so, things are looking really sweet around here, and most days we are eating kale, cucumber, zucchini and snap peas. When our garden falls behind the farmers market fills in nicely.
Peas climbing the arbor--these will be pulled out later this week,
and replaced with a fall planting.
When I said we weren't getting a lot of food, I was discounting the kale--of which there is a mini forest. The stuff is thick and tall and growing! I've frozen quite a bit, but still need to keep at it, before the cabbage worms take their toll. For now they are mawing the brocolli, which I'm happy to provide as bait seeing as though it never grows for me anyhow. A friend told me she just puts her kale straight in the freezer sans blanching. Well, I jumped online and read enough (one site) to convince me that she had the right idea, so that's what I did too. The soaking and picking for worms still takes some time, but the job is way more pleasant on a hot summer day without having to steam up the kitchen.
These photos are all from last week, and since then I've planted fall crops of lettuce, tatsoi, parsley, and spinach, between the onions and beets, beside the peas, and in any other little space I could find. The greens all germinated in two days--such a difference from spring planting. If I can stay on top of things, I'm hoping we can eat from the garden straight through to snow fall.
Eat your greens!