Thursday, March 29, 2012

Spring Cleaning

Hey all!
Last week I was finally able to go in an rejuvenate my suffering garden (and my school stressed self). You've gotta love SPRING BREAK :D
After the hard rain we had been having+my slight procrastination of garden upkeep, I had a ton of greens to harvest, grass to pull, old plants to pull up (it always makes me sad to see them go, but excited to see what will go in their place), and seedlings to transplant. Phew! Still, I love it!

All the arugula (this is a full sized towel!)







This is after the arugula harvest. 

I went out one day and just harvested arugula (from a one foot square) and was up to my ears in the green stuff (My mom is in love with it, no complaints from her side). I ended up with three Safeway bags of the stuff.
*Important tip: when harvesting, use the towel to also COVER or SHADE your greens. I went inside and a bunch of my harvest was wilting at the bottom. I had to race to get it in bags with a damp paper towel and into the fridge.
Cut leaves + sun = :/




All of this from one cutting!!! I was stunned.







Then I went in to tackle some of the neighboring square. It was (and still is) full to bursting with Burpee's Chop Suey Mix (look behind the harvested arugula to see it before any harvest). I just think of them as the purpose salad/stir-fry square. I only had one Kale plant in the square foot, but the leaves I harvested were enough to make a full gallon freezer bag of spicy Mexican kale chips :)









On another venture to the garden I continued to harvest from my stir-fry square. Wheedling through to cut out my tender bok-choy and Chinese cabbage. I can't wait to have it stir fried with plum sauce. (I think that will be on the menu as tonight's vegetable. hmmm.....)













The next day I went into my stir fry square, scissors in hand, towel at the ready. I needed to harvest some of the dominant green from the square (I don't remember what it's called so don't ask. If you know, please share :)
After a full session of harvesting, I only really shaved a bit off the top (Round 2 this weekend!) Look What I ended up with! I needed to harvest more, but couldn't fathom that I would use it if any more than this. This pile on my counter was over half a foot high! (Still, the torn off leaves are great in salad, and with stems they shine in stir fry. Easy to eat)


After all of my greens harvesting, I decided to make salad mixes for some of my friends to get it off my hands. I went out and picked some beet and radish greens, divided my mountain of arugula, mystery green, and separated it all into 4 very full Safeway bags. Three of my neighbors found themselves with a wonderful salad base, and we got a huge bag as well. (Though with all that is still in the garden I probably could have given away all 4 and harvested another for our salad....) Ours of course had extra arugula for my mom.


Not only did I Harvest all of this wonder, my Pineapples are growing!!!!!! Look! I never knew that they make flowers on their eyes, so pretty!




I also pulled up my cucumbers after a successful season of pickling and salads. In my next post I'll show you all the fun things I put in their place ;)





Thanks for reading!

Monday, February 6, 2012

My Harvest

Here was the bountiful harvest I came home to after a long three days being a PCCS at Girl Scout Camp and chasing around a hyper hoard of Brownies.
From clock-wise from top left I gathered:

Adult arugula leaves
Hericot Vert
Some Asian greens from a Burpee Chop-suey Mix
Baby arugula (my mom's favorite)
A yellow zuchinni
4 pickling cucumbers

I am super excited to see my cucumbers growing (due to my unfortunate attempts before, they turned orange.....)
Better yet, this week's new recipe will definitely be pickles. I will post my results on my other blog in the near future :)
As for the zuchinni, I get to harvest some of his friends today, and I ate him for lunch cut with a portabella mushroom and some cherry tomatoes heated with some spices, a little non-stick spray, and salt on the stove-top. Mmmmmmm....

Until next time,
Keep up the gardening!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

First Zuchini

Burpee Yellow Zuchini
Yay! The first of many. I cut it a little late, so it is a touch too big. Other than that its beautiful. I cut it off the plant this morning, and will slice/grate it into tonight's salad. MMMMMM!

Soon there will be enough blossoms to harvest along with the squash! I am so excited to play around with them in the kitchen. If I do anything fun I'll be sure to post the link to my other blog!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

What's Growing On?

 Recently I went to Koolau Farmers and bought some herbs as well as some mite spray.
Growing I have rosemerry, mint, and a potted lemon tree.
Also growing I have:
Cucumbers-
I am growing a pickling type and a burpless slicing type (Burpee). So far both have their attributes. The pickling is shooting off with blinding speed, but only one of the seeds I planted germinated (of 8). The slicing takes longer to sprout, but of the 8 seeds I planted, 3 plants popped up. No word on taste yet.

Arrugala-
still little sproutlings

Mixed greens-
also sproutlings

Beets-
Only 3 are groing right now as sproutlings because my cat decided to nap on top of them. (see other post on the cat)

Zuchinni Yellow (Burpee)-
taking off at breakneck speed. Already sporting beautiful blossoms (the males soon to be stuffed and baked mmmmm...)

Zuchini (Burpee)-
still growing to full size, haven'y\t put out blossoms yet

Green Beans-
all still trying to reach the trellis. I hope they'll take off soon, I guess patience is an important part of gardening

Carrots/radishes-
still sleeping in the dirt

Lima beans-
I cut the stalks off at the roots. Now I am just drying out the vine and attatched beans so I can bag it up, hit it with a tennis raquet, and collect the dried beans (I'll be sure to post on theat event!)

My Eggplant Tree from Frankies Nursury (grafted jap. eggplant to a tree relative)-
Growing 2 eggplants right now :)


Friday, January 13, 2012

Kitty-Cat Troubles

My adorable cat Snowflake thinks she can help me in the garden. As wonderful as it is to find all of your beet seedlings uprooted, tilled, and refurbished as a napping spot, I decided Snowflake was not allowed in the garden. My solution (if it is really effective I will be sure to comment) is cheap and hopefully efficient. Also bamboo is a very sustainable material, and wont leach any weird chemicals into the soil. The answer: bamboo skewers. I put them up like a picket fence around my raised garden close togeather. My cat has been hopping up onto the edge of the garden to enter. My thought is that she wont want to jump through the barrier, and that it would be too high to be convenient for her to jump it. Instead she can sunbathe in the dirt behind the garden.

^ my "fence" and in the background, the culprit ^

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Raised Gardens and all their glory!!!!

Happy New Year!
I have been putting off this post until I could show a garden with life about it's soil. Me and my dad built this 4x6 garden with the help of Home Depot online.
After constructing the beast, setting it in place, and filling it with drainage rocks and soil, it was ready. I decided to go with square foot gardening. From all that I've read, it really is the most space efficient method (correct me if you think otherwise). To make things easier I went  out with some string and some nails, and set up an easy (removable) grid.




Visibly planted I have:

-Burpee yellow and green zucchini (front left)
-pickling and burp-less cucumbers (3 rows back)
-green beans (back row)

As invisible seeds I have:

-Danver half long carrots
-arugula
-chop-suey mix greens
-salad mix greens
-beets

In Sprouting green house:
-cherry tomatoes
-mystery heirloom tomatoes
-yellow bell peppers
-basil
-borage
-mystery eggplant

I am super stoked!!!! It is finally happening, I am gardening in my garden!


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Lima Beans and other things

Hello Blogging world. Sorry to have been gone so long. I was busy traveling and passing the first bit of my 10th grade year in high school, so not much time to blog. Alas here I am! A while ago, I stuck 2 Lima beans into the ground and for what seemed like forever they were spindly little nothing vines. Well not anymore! My plant gets bigger everyday and sports lots of pods all along it like a string of Christmas lights. The first few I picked I decided to pick fresh and then dry, I don't like this method. For one I am a terrible judge at when a bean is "done". Pick when plump does not suffice when telling a teenager when to harvest. Therefore I have resorted to plan B; let them harvest all the way and pick when the pod has turned orangy brown.


Now instead of sad little shriveled Lima beans, I have full, purple beans! (and yes this epiphany was today so I have a total of 3 harvested...) Happily there are countless pods on the plant and more pop up everyday.

Among my Lima beans on the same trellis are those cucumbers from a while back. Quite frankly they are doing terribly, BUT since the Lima beans have shaded the vine, less cucumber mishaps have occurred and more are looking like this little green one below, and less like these shriveled abominations below.



Hopefully I will get at least one cucumber from my experience. Next time I will not start them in the heat of mid-summer. (Bad move on my part) My cukes also may have some sort of disease or bug because the few that grow large have shriveled and turned orange. It may have been my watering them too little with the combo of too much sun, but if you have any tips let me know.

Also in my garden are two itty-bitty clumps of pumpkin plants. I procrastinated so they were planted late and will only be ready for "Fall" not Halloween. At least they are green and flowering.

Also I haven't put anything new and exciting in my menagerie of pots because my birthday was last week and that means my raised gardens are being built this and next weekend!!!! Finally space to plant freely.

Thank you to the few that read my blog. I will do better to post much more often.
Happy Gardening!
Wish Me Luck. :)