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What's growing in your garden?

Ddb87b9f 9bed 4de1 8e24 37d7d9867db4  patiogarden14

What are you growing in your garden this year? My favorite are the tomatoes and how versatile they are. From eating right off the vine, to roasting with olive oil and salt, they can't be beat. I recently started carrots from seed in a pot and they are peeking out and almost ready to be thinned. Carrot soup may be in on the menu in August! Last year the garden did so well that I rarely went to the Farmer's Markets. We'll see what happens this year. Looking forward to hearing about your green thumbs!

BerryBaby is trusted source on General Cooking

asked 6 months ago
21 answers 751 views
23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added 6 months ago

From seed, we are trying beans and mixed greens (which are sprouting fantastically well!) in a potted balcony garden. We bought a few plants as well: jalapenos, tomatoes, basil, and cilantro. Unfortunately, some spring hail did a number on the herbs and tomatoes (though I'm hopeful that the tomato plants will spring back). But the jalapenos are looking good so far.

I agree with you about the tomatoes. I can't get enough and love when my parents end up with what seems like a neverending harvest. Unfortunately, their poorly behaved pups have done some early damage to this year's garden.

Are you replanting your carrots? I didn't realize you could grow them successfully in a pot? How big of a pot would you recommend?

50e6ebd3 b4c9 4d51 bd5e 1163afa4ba06  2013wreath
BerryBaby

BerryBaby is trusted source on General Cooking

added 6 months ago

No, just using a planter box, 10" deep by 2' wide. The carrots are the small 'round' type. It works very well. They aren't fussy about soil and very little sun is required. Kind of like growing weeds, don't have to do anything, they just grow!

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PHIL

PHIL is a trusted home cook.

added 6 months ago

I have everything in pots on my deck. Heirloom tomatoes big and small sizes, I like the small ones cause you can pick them almost daily. Lots of herbs , Rosemary, basil, thyme, tarragon, sage, mint, parsley, cilantro, lettuce, rainbow carrots, scallions ( leftover bottoms i just stuck in the ground)

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PHIL

PHIL is a trusted home cook.

added 6 months ago

How is your basil doing?

50e6ebd3 b4c9 4d51 bd5e 1163afa4ba06  2013wreath
BerryBaby

BerryBaby is trusted source on General Cooking

added 6 months ago

Better, I think the slugs have stopped eating them. More new growth sprouting up, which is encouraging. I bought pinwheels and placed them around the garden to keep cats and critters away. They are mylar, so the shiny really is not something they like. We'll see how this works.

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added 6 months ago

we have been under severe drought conditions for several years now. i removed my front lawn and put in drought tolerant plants and mulch. but, new plants require water and between the new plants and my mature trees, there is no water to spare after i water my potted succulents. i once had a lush, flower filled garden with lots of veggies too but my water company will impose fines on my if i exceed my allotment. but, i will enjoy other comments here and dream back to the days i used to have such a wondrous refuge.

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PHIL

PHIL is a trusted home cook.

added 6 months ago

scruz, maybe you can use a soaker hose or a drip irrigator

23d08e08 3b57 4e81 adcd 91701fc50809  fb avatar
added 6 months ago

I'm a bit north of you (SF area)-assuming you're in Santa Cruz- and I understand your water situation has been a bit worse than ours, but most of the state has abandoned excess use fines, which never amounted to much anyway. Surely you could scrape up a few gallons a day to water some herbs and vegies in pots- they're pretty accepting of slightly used water.

671b6c39 4898 435f 92c5 89cd9b925088  img 3788
added 6 months ago

Elephant and curly kale, 3 kinds of lettuce, Swiss chard I find that greens are the best thing I grow. You just can't buy tender baby greens in the market that have been picked within the hour.

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MMH
added 6 months ago

I live in Omaha In a 100 year old craftsman 4 square. We have raised beds. We use square foot gardening, companion planting & succession gardening. We also make our own compost. We are both professionals but it is so manageable & our kids love it. I would rather plant things in to soil & I have the luxury of doing so. You get more growth than in a container & watering is less a problem. I know not everyone has that option. This year we've had lots of rain & all of a sudden it's 96 degrees. We grow lots of things that other people do - a variety of tomatoes (grafted), a variety of peppers, cucumbers, carrots, beets, peas, radishes, fennel, green onions, rainbow Swiss chard, lacinato kale, nasturtiums (for gorgeous salads) & herbs. The wet weather has caused problems with the basil. The heat is making the lettuce bolt. I have loved growing the greens. I'm new to that. You can use twice what most recipes call for & they almost disappear. Great addition to soups. The kale is indestructible in our weather no matter the conditions. I also love all the herbs. I find that because they are right out the kitchen door we use them all the more - as opposed to spending $4 for 2 stems. One of my favorites is lemon thyme. It's so lemony that I can make an herb paste without buying a lemon. And, when frost is eminent we cut branches of thyme, basil, dill, rosemary & parsley and just stick the whole stems in freezer bags and use them all winter. They are a wonderful addition when making chicken stock. Last year we made kale basil pesto & cucumber kimchee. We make & can salsa. In a pinch you can oven roast all the veggies, purée with an immersion blender, season & can. It works the same for tomato sauce. We freeze it thick so it can be sauce or soup. We also roast and freeze red peppers. This year we incorporated our herbs in to a humming bird garden & hung the feeders in the garden which also increases our pollinators. And, Nebraska public television from the university of Nebraska at Lincoln airs the oldest continuously running tv show in the nation - Backyard farmer which we watch every Thursday - see byf.unl.edu. You can watch online & they take questions from all over the country. Total gardening experts. Btw - our kids think we are total dorks (which we are) but they love the food. And, kids are more likely to eat food which they grew and helped cook.

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added 6 months ago

wow, that sounds like heaven to me. we did go to the farmers market today and got some stone fruit from central valley. looks wonderful. they didn't have my favorite lettuce from route 1 farms and your line about your lettuce bolting made me remember how sad i would get when that happened as it meant another phase in what was ripening and the progression of late spring into summer. i continue to compost even though i am not planting anything...and i forgot to add that i had thrown 3 types of new potatoes into a couple of gopher wire protected planting areas and they are looking great and about to bloom. looking forward to those tender spuds.

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
MMH
added 6 months ago

I live in Omaha In a 100 year old craftsman 4 square. We have raised beds. We use square foot gardening, companion planting & succession gardening. We also make our own compost. We are both professionals but it is so manageable & our kids love it. I would rather plant things in to soil & I have the luxury of doing so. You get more growth than in a container & watering is less a problem. I know not everyone has that option. This year we've had lots of rain & all of a sudden it's 96 degrees. We grow lots of things that other people do - a variety of tomatoes (grafted), a variety of peppers, cucumbers, carrots, beets, peas, radishes, fennel, green onions, rainbow Swiss chard, lacinato kale, nasturtiums (for gorgeous salads) & herbs. The wet weather has caused problems with the basil. The heat is making the lettuce bolt. I have loved growing the greens. I'm new to that. You can use twice what most recipes call for & they almost disappear. Great addition to soups. The kale is indestructible in our weather no matter the conditions. I also love all the herbs. I find that because they are right out the kitchen door we use them all the more - as opposed to spending $4 for 2 stems. One of my favorites is lemon thyme. It's so lemony that I can make an herb paste without buying a lemon. And, when frost is eminent we cut branches of thyme, basil, dill, rosemary & parsley and just stick the whole stems in freezer bags and use them all winter. They are a wonderful addition when making chicken stock. Last year we made kale basil pesto & cucumber kimchee. We make & can salsa. In a pinch you can oven roast all the veggies, purée with an immersion blender, season & can. It works the same for tomato sauce. We freeze it thick so it can be sauce or soup. We also roast and freeze red peppers. This year we incorporated our herbs in to a humming bird garden & hung the feeders in the garden which also increases our pollinators. And, Nebraska public television from the university of Nebraska at Lincoln airs the oldest continuously running tv show in the nation - Backyard farmer which we watch every Thursday - see byf.unl.edu. You can watch online & they take questions from all over the country. Total gardening experts. Btw - our kids think we are total dorks (which we are) but they love the food. And, kids are more likely to eat food which they grew and helped cook.

Ff459733 0c1a 4bbe a470 ded11c0103f1  wickedgood
added 6 months ago

My husband and I are trying our hand at gardening for the first time this year, using a simple raised beds (uncrated) approach. We decided to complement the variety of greens we typically get from our local CSA so no lettuce, kale, chard, etc. for us.

Instead currently we have five kinds of heirloom tomatoes; carrots; Padron peppers; eggplant; spinach; scallions; garlic; leeks; grey zucchini; yellow watermelon; cucumbers; bush beans; potatoes; basil; parsley; savory; dill; thyme; oregano. Most of them seem to be going great! (The eggplants are the only iffy ones but I am willing to give them some more time and see what happens once it gets really warm.) We started seedlings for the majority of those indoors at the very end of March and transplanted things the third week of May. In fact today is gardening day and I am weeding for the first time + applying some more pine needles as mulch. Bountiful harvest to all!

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added 6 months ago

Far too big a subject to go into, but I'd like to give a plug to a couple of new varieties. Tomato "New Girl", touted as an upgrade to "Early Girl" has so far been an outstanding performer- it was the first to ripen tomatoes, ahead of Stupice and Early Girl- though the plant is a bit ahead; it's the only one I bought from a nursery. The tomatoes have had very good acid and sugar balance and excellent general flavor. They're a bit thick skinned. The plant is a vigorous grower and very productive. Strawberry "Elan" has been the most consistently sweet of any strawberry I've grown; it may have a bit less bite than some. i only have one plant, but it seems prolific and a good grower. On the ornamental side, the current star is Michauxia Campanuloides, which looks like a sort of bizarre cross between a foxglove and a lily, with a sense of humor. It (and the more common M. Tchehatchefii (sp?)) are native to Turkey, and are tough, heat tolerant plants- not easy to find.

05ecb292 9c62 4e50 b630 a898cae237ad  laura avatar s size
added 6 months ago

Despite the green thumbs, we have a cherry tree that never made any cherries, hazelnuts which are feeding the squirrels, nespole tree but all the fruits become black before they mature (despite copper sulphate). A fig tree that attract all the mosquitoes from the area and makes figs when we are on vacation, 1 blueberries bush that makes 4 berries per year, strawberries here and there and we try to pick them before the birds. Our lemon tree died last year, and I am still mourning it.
Usually I plant cherry tomatoes and zucchini but last year was so dry that we had a huge water bill, we could have bought the vegetables at the jewelry shop.
This year I pass, though I always have the usual herbs.
The vegetables I really miss are the zucchini as I like to pick the flowers early in the morning and fry them in batter. Buying them at the supermarket is not the same thing, they have to be pick the same morning.
The same reason I planted figs, nespoles, and cherries.... eating them from the tree is a completely different experience, if I had any.
Since I am in the South of France, I have plenty of lavender, no problem with that !

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added 6 months ago

well, i bet you have plenty of wine to go with that lavender too. wow, you have had bad luck in the garden. i had some waist high raised beds for lettuces, but found the squirrels were rummaging through the soil and planting acorns and i gave up the herbs and lettuce as i don't like the thought of eating raw stuff touched by squirrels, as cute as they are. our water company is about to raise our rates again, so with a big lot that is fallow except for 10 trees and a front yard of drought tolerant plants, i will just imagine i live at everyone else's homes and buy my produce.

05ecb292 9c62 4e50 b630 a898cae237ad  laura avatar s size
added 6 months ago

Thank you scruz, yes plenty of wine ! No, I wouldn't want to eat salad from a squirrel plate. Next year we are changing our garden nursery, this time crossing the border to Italy. We will buy several small trees, even if they will take longer to grow we spread the risk of buying the wrong variety. Such a waste of space.

B3038408 42c1 4c18 b002 8441bee13ed3  new years kitchen hlc only
AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added 6 months ago

My latest treasure - a curry leaf plant, recently purchased at Santos Spice in San Leandro. I've never seen them anywhere else. I can usually get leaves in packages from Santos and from the Indian grocers in Berkeley, but having the plant is so handy.
Other than that, I'm just continuing to grow a lot of herbs, which I use by the handful virtually every day.
And my drought-weary blueberry bushes are heavy with berries, after much-needed rain this winter. Well, they're not technically in my garden, as they line my front walkway. I put up 19 pints of berries in 8, 12 and 16 ounce jars last weekend and expect to put up an equal amount of pie filling and more berries in light syrup in the next few weeks. http://food52.com/not-recipes...
;o)

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added 6 months ago

Curry plant (together with all sorts of other marvelous stuff) is often available from Berkeley Horticultural Nursery on McGee St.

B3038408 42c1 4c18 b002 8441bee13ed3  new years kitchen hlc only
AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added 6 months ago

Thank you so much, smaug. That's one nursery I haven't been to in a while (Orchard in Lafayette is my playground), so it's good to know. ;o)

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added 6 months ago

Orchard (not to be confused with Orchard Supply) is a good nursery too- that's where I finally found Mexican Oregano. If you really want to drive yourself nuts, there's Annies Annuals in Richmond (who also do a fine job on mail order, and supply most of the more interesting plants to the local nurseries).