"Life is not about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself."

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Garden check-in...

The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses.
~Hanna Rion

To say I am pleased with the progress our garden has made so far this season would be an understatement! Almost everything seems to be thriving and growing like crazy!!! And, today, we had our first harvest.....a big colander full of spicy arugula!!!

This is the first year we planted arugula and so far, so good! I wasn't sure of when to harvest it or really how to, either. I thought you just pull the whole thing up. YouTube to the rescue! I found, like, a bajillion videos on gardening and harvesting and such. I learned that as long as I kept trimming the leaves and pinch off an flowers that start to form my one plant will continue to produce!

And now we can enjoy fresh arugula for a few days till the next time it is ready to be trimmed!

I also learned that I needed to thin out my radishes, so, did that, too...

 It is hard to tell in these pics but there is a row of carrots growing in between the rows of radishes.

Yes, I am very pleased with our garden this year! I love the whole raised bed concept. Keeps everything neat and orderly, and weeding is a breeze! We don't get even a small fraction of the amount of weeds we got as when we planted in the ground the last couple years!

Want to see everything else?!? It has all grown so much since last I posted about our garden!

 There's "Farmer Kev" looking all rugged and dirty! ;-)

 Somehow we bought one too many cuke plants so we planted this one in a large pot and hoped for the best. It is doing so well!!!

 Spaghetti squash and acorn squash!

 The leaves are getting HUGE!

 No, that ugly blue barrel is not a permanent part of our garden! 

 String beans (that are not properly trellised yet...)

 Big old reliable zucchini with their ginormous leaves!

 Cucumber plants!

 Deliciously fragrant tomato plants!!! For those of you that garden, have you ever noticed how fragrant tomato leaves are?!

 These Burpee tomato cages are hands down our best garden purchase this year. Well, they are tied with the raised beds. Really, though, the cages we got the last few years at Home Depot or local garden centers never held up. Tomato vines get thick! So I bit the bullet and bought the Burpee cages, which, yes, cost, like triple what I paid at other places, but I was replacing the one I bought every year anyway so this, to me, was well worth it!

 I obviously can't get enough of our tomato plants!

 Bell peppers...red, orange, and green! Since I took this pic earlier today all the plants are now caged.

 Peppers....jalapeno and sweet banana!

 Doesn't he look like he is trying to figure out a way to take a bite out of the plants?!

 "I think she is still watching me...."

 "Whaaat?! I am so innocent...."

 'Maters, 'maters, 'maters!


 L@@K!!! Cutie little cherry tomatoes!!!!!!!

 I actually did a little dance when I saw these!!!

 Blossoms waiting to turn in to tomatoes!

 The way I keep gushing about tomatoes you would think I loved them and ate them all the time. The truth is, I don't really like raw tomatoes. I rarely every eat them in salad and if I do it is because they were chopped up pretty small and I didn't notice them. I never ask for them on sandwiches. I know many gardeners think that one of gardening's greatest pleasure is walking out to their yard, plucking a sun-warmed tomato from the vine, and biting in to it like and apple. Ewww! I could never! But...I love to cook with them! I love to make sauces, and salsa, and use them in frittatas, and one homemade pizzas, and in quiche, and really anything. Oh! I will actually eat Insalata Caprese, though...go figure!

Anyhoo, I obviously had a little too much fun photographing our growing garden so I will just leave you with several more photos for your enjoyment!

Are you gardening this year?! I would love to hear all about it, and of course, see pics!!!


Christa said...

So when can I come over to shop for veggies? LOL

Terri said...

Pretty soon I expect to see a cute little vegetable stand with Kevin in his cute hat selling tomatoes!

Monica said...

This is awesome, Kristen! Aren't you glad you didn't just pull out the arugula?

Bailey looks so cute sitting there...but totally looks like he's ready to pounce and eat whatever is in front of him.

Cracks me up about the tomatoes! Especially that you will eat them in a caprese salad! Mike is the same way with strawberries. He won't even touch them, but he'll eat strawberry jam with big chunks of berries in it! Weird!

Karen Pilcher said...

Your garden is just glorious. And to think just a couple of yeards ago we couldn't convince you we wanted a garden Post on GLU. Look at Mr. and Mrs. Farmer Brown.
I am just so jealous. Wish I beg a few of anything from you.
Great job girl.
Have you got all the canning jards and canning gear yet? I see a canning pressure cooker in your future. :)