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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Garden fresh

Hello again!  It's about time I got back to the blog.  It's been a busy summer with a new house and a new job, so despite having lots of things to blog about I haven't found enough time to actually post!

Back in June, when we moved in to the house, I quickly took advantage of my very first yard (yeah!), and planted veggies straight away.  At the time I said I would be content if I even had a 10% yield, seeing as it was my first year planting anything.

Sure enough, I didn't get a super yield.  Below is a picture (taken last week) of the 'garden' where I planted yellow beans, carrots, and cucumbers.



Yep.  Underwhelming.  Because NOTHING grew!  I noticed when I tilled the garden that there were numerous creepy-crawlies making a home in the dirt.  Cut-worms must have been included in the melange because, aside from a few short-lived bean sprouts, my crop yield was nil.  Mildly disappointing.

But now onto the success story of my garden:  the cherry tomatoes!  I decided to plant potted tomatoes because I've heard good things about container gardening - you know exactly what type of soil you're giving the plants, you can move the containers to get the optimal light, and really, you can put them wherever in/on your yard or deck you please.  I found my plants at VanKampen's Greenhouses here in Charlottetown.


[just after planting]

I planted three cherry tomato plants per container (in retrospect I would have planted two - you'll see why).  One container was a mix of potting soil + PEI compost and the other had potting soil + a Miracle-Gro potting soil.  I was going to experiment to see which plants did better, but of course mixed up the containers before labeling them (all my years experimenting in labs obviously have gone to waste!).


[crazy plants]

In the end, the soil-experiment mix-up was moot.  All plants took off like crazy.  At last count, about three weeks ago, there were over 100 tomatoes on the vines - I'm guessing that number has doubled by now!  If you look closely in the pic above, you can see the green wire frames I'm using to support the vines - compare to the first picture to see how massive the plants actually are!


[pretty tomatoes]

Cherry tomatoes

[enough for dinner!]

The best part is that the tomatoes are actually starting to ripen in useful quantities.  For about two weeks we simply ate them as they ripened one-by-one, but this weekend we had enough to use in our marinated-summer-veggie-and-tofu-kabobs.  We typically go through a container of cherry tomatoes every week or two, so this garden success story will actually help our grocery bill.

Another success in the garden was the pea patch:

before and after - peas

[before and after]

We're starting to see a bit of a yield - looking forward to the first harvest.

pea pod

[so fresh]

Lastly, let me show you our inherited grape vines.  I can claim no part in helping them grow, they just came along with our house.  They seem to be doing wonderfully this season, though.  I might try some grape jelly in the fall if they become plump enough.  They are definitely still sour at this point.


[grape vines on the pergola]


[lotsa grapes!]

Thanks for checking back into the blog despite the summer dormancy.  Hope to have more posts for you soon!


Margie said...Best Blogger Tips

So nice to finally have a garden to look after.
Happy growing !

cathy macInnis said...Best Blogger Tips

I love peas fresh from the garden.

BARB said...Best Blogger Tips


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