This is a Journal entry by paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

My vegetable garden 2019

Post 1

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

Today I dug three parallel trenches in my front yard, and planted beets in them. It took a while to remove stones from the soil, and to mix compost and fertilizer into them. The last step was to put a fence around the patch.

On Sunday I will plant green beans to the left of the beet patch.

Early next month I will set up a very large long planter along the ground parallel to my porch. In this I will plant zucchini. My brother gave me the planter for Christmas. I think it holds 16 gallons of soil. I will need a lot soil to get it filled up.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 2

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

A smaller planter will hold Gold Nuggets, a small form of Hubbard Squash.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 3

Rev Nick - dead man walking (mostly)

I haven't had fresh beets in a while, my bride doesn't much care for them.

Lately, I have a wont of some kholrabi. Peeled, sliced and stored in cold water in a fridge, they are a refreshing snack. Somewhere between turnip and winter radish.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 4

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

Beets are an ingredient in a chocolate cake that I make.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 5

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

Today was Sunday. I dug 4 and a half trenches to the left of the beet patch. I sifted stones out of the soil, mixed in some good garden soil and compost and fertilizer, then planted green beans in the trenches.

A tiring chore, but for the next four or five months my commitment amounts to five minutes of watering per day, and eventually picking the veggies as they get to be the right size. I will pick some beet greens from time to time for salads or soups. It's hard t know whether the beet roots will amount to anything. I won't know until October. Meanwhile I can at least nibble on a few leaves from time to time.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 6

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

For Christmas, my brother gave me an enormous planter. It holds something like 30 gallons of soil. Or maybe it's 60 gallons. Whatever. I set it up next to my porch, in a place where it can get both morning and afternoon sun. I've spent several days scrounging up enough soil
and compost and fertilizer to fill it, so I could plant zucchinis in
it. Zucchinis want everything: full sun, regular watering, and the
most fertile soil. Growing them in a planter is not cheap, but I can
reuse the planter for years to come. Besides, about half of the soil is repurposed from planters that held other plants in previous years.

Anyway, today I finally got it filled, and I've just got back from a
garden store, where I bought five zucchini seedlings, which I put into
the planter as soon as I got back home. They're sitting pretty now.
I've sprayed rabbit repellent on the leaves. Can't be too careful.

Those little zucchini plants look tiny in such a large space, but when the weather gets hot, they will get very large.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 7

Pierce The Pirate ~ out of Hotblack Desiato mode again ~

Very versatile veggie zucchinis are smiley - zen

smiley - pirate


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 8

Rev Nick - dead man walking (mostly)

Maybe it's because I never met zukes as a kid, but they have never done much for me. But they do make a very nice bread (akin to banana bread), and either deep fried in strips or small pieces of a stir-fry? Quite nice.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 9

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

The blossoms can be fried and eaten. I used to used a blue cheese filling for them. smiley - smiley


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 10

Pierce The Pirate ~ out of Hotblack Desiato mode again ~

I first tried those on Corfu (Kerkyra) in the late 1970's. They were super delicious smiley - drool

smiley - pirate


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 11

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

My next step was to fill a couple of six-gallon planters with soil. I planted Gold Nugget seeds in them. Gold Nuggets are small winter squashes (about the size of an orange) that reach maturity quickly. They were designed to substitute for sweet potatoes in climates like that of Minnesota, which has a short growing season. From seed to fruit takes about two months. The nice thing is that you can get a lot of repeat crops from the same plants. Another nice thing is that the little squashes keep for about six months.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 12

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

The Gold Nuggets are not up yet (It's still a bit early to expect them), but there's spotty coverage in the beet patch. Not to worry, the leaves and roots will use every inch of space they can get. I might make up in size what I lack in numbers.

I planted the beans two days after I planted the beets, and I'm happy to say that the last couple of days have marked wonders in terms of germination. Of the hundred or so beans I planted, 28 have come up so far. I expect twice that many once a few more days have passed. Beans will do better if they have more space, so again I am not worried.

smiley - smiley

The five zucchini plants are basking in copious sunshine, drinking up every drop of water I give them, and seem to like the soil Iplanted them in. Barring animal devastation, i have hopes for succulnt squashes this Summer. smiley - smiley


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 13

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

A day later, and there are now 32 beans up.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 14

Pierce The Pirate ~ out of Hotblack Desiato mode again ~

Go go beans!

smiley - pirate


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 15

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

A few hours later, and there are 38 beans up.


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 16

Rev Nick - dead man walking (mostly)

Are you certain they are beans? They might be a teeny species of pod-people . . .


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 17

Pierce The Pirate ~ out of Hotblack Desiato mode again ~

... or - smiley - yikes - Triffids! smiley - yikes

smiley - pirate


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 18

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

I'm not blind, you know. smiley - winkeye I would recognize triffids if I saw them. smiley - monstersmiley - monster


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 19

Pierce The Pirate ~ out of Hotblack Desiato mode again ~

Phew, that's a relief!

Give me a call if you do. I can't tell a Triffid from a bowl of smiley - petuniassmiley - erm

smiley - pirate


My vegetable garden 2019

Post 20

paulh. Following butterflies through the meadows

Not that this is relevant form my vegetable garden (except for storage, in pots, in the garden over the Winter), but I just planted a pot of Echinacea in the flower garden along our entrance ramp. This was one of many that I rescued as seedlings last Summer, putting in 2.5.-quart pots to grow bigger root systems. As I said, the pots were put in the ground (pots and all)m over the Winter, to be given permanent locations this Summer. I had twenty pots of Echinacaea in all, but not all of them survived the Winter. Those are the breaks. Most were free -- I found them growing as seedlings next to their parent plants.

Some have been taken form their pots and put into much larger planters, where they will live permanently. Of all the plants that I grow, Echinacea is best adapted to living in large planters. I've tried grow Black-eyed Susans in pots, but they do badly there.

The champion pot-dweller is an Echinacea that has lived in a 2.5-quart pot for ten years, and is still thriving. It deserves a permanent spot in the ground, but I'm in no hurry to give it one. smiley - smiley

The Golden Nugget seeds I planted are still not up. They respond to soil that stays above 65 degrees F, and Nature has not given them that yet. To be honest, I only require that 4 seeds germinate. They will be well cared for, and will produce a lot of squashes for me. If all else fails, I can scrounge up some good liquid fertilizer for them.


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My vegetable garden 2019

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