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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Sweet Potatoes have Arrived

We used 2 store bought organic sweet potatoes to grow slips. From that, we planted 13 slips. I did not allow any of the vines to drop any new roots as they grew because the area was quite tight.

So what did we get? Well, we haven't cleaned and weighed yet.....but here is a teaser:

That is an average sized 3 year old boy holding one.
Just in case you are wondering; this is how they look in the ground:
And this is how they looked; ;just before digging....the hoops mark the edges of the 4x8 bed.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


I guess I can say that this is the week for melons. I harvested 3 melons and 1 canteloupe. I haven't been able to weight anything yet, but I'll let you know what they weighed in at later.

I also harvested a couple of cucumbers, peppers, okra, peas, and fish pepper. Not much, but the Texas heat is tough on the garden.

The boys (in their garden), harvested another birdhouse (gourd) and some more toys (spinning gourds). They can't wait till they finish drying so we can paint them. They check the garden every day to see if there are more toys ready.

Check out more harvest at Daphne's Harvest Monday!

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Garden in August

If you think you missed the July garden tour, you didn't.  I didn't do it. The garden looked the same in July as it did in June because everything was full grown and producing in June. July was the month of decline for the garden as you will see during the tour.

Bed 1: Empty
Its been cleared and is ready for fall planting.
Bed 2: Okra, Peppers, and Eggplant
The Okra has gotten really tall, you can see that some of it is taller than our 6' fence. The peppers are to the right of the okra. The okra provides them late afternoon shade; I think this has helped them to continue to produce in this heat. Everything is healthy.
You can see Bed 3 in the photo above to the right of Bed 2; it is covered with plastic. I did this to kill any squash bugs that tried to over winter there.
Bed 4 is also cleared and covered, so I didn't get a picture of that.
Bed 5: Tomatoes!
This is the infamous tomato bed that produced all those tomatoes. As you can see, it is now a tomato jungle and still incredibly healthy. There are some brown branches, but most of them are lush and green.
They stopped flowering during July's heat, but.....
Yep, the flowers have returned. This gave me pause, but I pulled most of them anyway. I have new tomatoes started already and I really want to try the new varieties that I have started. I left one planted and heavily pruned off the 'old' parts. This will be my test plant to see if surviving tomatoes can produce a good fall harvest or if its best to start with new plants.
Bed 6 is cleared and ready for fall.
Bed 7: Peas
This bed of peas was a little disappointing. They just haven't produced the amount of peas I hoped for. We've only gotten two pots full. I grow peas/beans for crop rotation purposes so I guess I shouldn't be too upset.
Bed 8 is empty as you can see above. We'll be planting more potatoes here in a few weeks.
Bed 9: Cukes and Pumpkin
We'll the squash bugs took the pumpkin out ages ago. The cukes took forever to grow. Now its taking down it's trellis! Producing fine cucumbers. We've even canned 5 jars of pickles. The brown you see in front is dill that has gone to seed, so I'll harvest the dill seed soon. Behind the cukes, you see some bean trellis'. Yep, that is the first of my fall garden already planted.
Bed 10 is empty.
Bed 11: Sweet Potatoes
Well Well. Has this bed gotten overgrown. You can't even see my walking paths anymore.  Very lush, I just hope there's some nice roots in there. Not sure when to dig them up, but we will try later this week. Since we have recently hit the 120 day mark since planting.
Bed 12: Melons!
The canteloupe have been good to us. We've picked about 6 at about 3 lbs each. They were all very juicy and good. Not as sweet as I like though, but they may be the variety: Ambrosia.
Behind the canteloupe is a watermelon patch. I have about 6 in there growing; I just have no idea as to when to pick them! In the pic below, you can see 3 of them easily but 5 of them are there.
The fall garden is underway:
Brassicas and basil
Tomatoes (not as yellow as they look in this photo)

Monday, August 6, 2012

Burned Out

I can't believe its been so long since my last post (last post was a scheduling accident). I guess you can say that I've been burned out; literally and figuratively.

The Texas heat has arrived. There have been daily heat advisories for weeks now. It's far to hot to be out in the garden. By the time its cool enough (around 8pm), its time to get the boys ready for the next day. So - in as sense - the heat burned us out of the garden.

The good news though is that we timed things perfectly...glad I kept good notes. Just as the heat started to set in; most of our spring garden was done. All we have to do now is harvest the few beds still putting out and occasionally clean out a bed for fall.

Here's a look at what we are still harvesting here in the Texas heat (last few weeks):

Bell Peppers gave a good harvest and I expect more as temperatures cool.
The fish peppers are still putting out quite well. These are just smallers than I like.
The okra seem to love this heat and have been unfazed.
The cucumbers also like the heat and have started producing several nice size cukes every few days. We've jarred 6 jars of pickles thus far.
We've also pulled 4 3-lb canteloupe from the garden and two pots full of peas, but I don't have pics.
All of these are still putting out. The roma tomatoes are still putting out as well; we just pull and use those as needed.
Summer squash could also survive this heat, but the squash bugs got those long ago. Also surviving the heat.....
It may not be so hot in other parts of the country/world, so click on over to Dapne's Dandelions Harvest Monday and see how other gardeners are fairing in their summer.