Garden 2011

Garden 2011 is in full swing, although I certainly got a late start on it this year.  The pregnancy is not the blame - it's the busy-ness of life.  But of course, the pregnancy has created most of the busy-ness (how do you spell that word?? I feel like I'm just making up a spelling..) then I guess we should just blame the pregnancy after all.

Like I mentioned, I got a really late start on this garden. For that reason, I don't think it's going to be as successful as last year's, which is sort of sad.  I like to always keep improving, not taking steps backwards.  This post will mostly reflect on the mistakes I've made, which I hope to use as notes for next year.

1. Mistake #1 - I planted the leafy vegetables too late

I bought a pack of 4 spinach plants and 3 romaine lettuce plants (to get an early crop) as well as seeds for leaf lettuce, spinach, and chard.  You might recall that last year, chard was one of my favorite crops of the season.  But I didn't get the plants into OR the seeds into the ground early enough.  I think it was the last week of May before I did this, and then all of a sudden it got hot out.  Leafy greens are cold weather veggies, and the fact that we had such a rainy, cool spring is like a double fail for me - I think I could have had an amazing crop if I had gotten these into the ground by the first week of May.

As it stands, I'm not sure that I'll have any leafy greens to harvest this year.  Huge sad face.

Mistake #2 - I picked up the wrong tomato plants

We like Roma tomatoes.  You know, the small, ovular shaped tomatoes, also known as "plum" tomatoes.  Last year our two Roma plants produced more tomatoes that we could keep up with (actually, we did keep up with them, but it was a challenge!)

This year I went to Home Depot, found the Roma section, picked one up and was on my merry way. Only to find when I arrived home that the plants I picked were NOT in the correct section at all, and now I had four "big boy" tomato plants on my hands.  I was all ready to plant them, so I didn't want to take them back.  They're in the ground, and seem to be doing fairly well but I'm not sure what I think about "big boy" tomatoes.  The large plant in the middle was from one of DH's students.  I think it's a cherry tomato plant, which I am kind of excited about.  

Only a medium fail on the tomato plants.

Mistake #3 - I don't think I have the proper support structure in place for Snap Peas

Sugar snap peas are a new veggie I'm trying this year.  I decided to plant it after making chicken lo mein all winter long and enjoying the stir fried green little veggies. (I also looked into whether or not I could grow water chestnuts, but did you know you actually need a pool of water to grow those!?!?) 

Anyway, I don't know much about peas, other that the package said "provide proper support."  I have no idea what proper support is, but I used the fencing that I had from last year, which we used to let the cukes climb on.  Even after only a few days, the pea plants are already going over the fencing.  Clearly I need more support. 

Mistake #4 - I forgot to order potatoes in advance

Last year I ordered my potato spuds very early on with the rest of my garden order in the spring.  This year I forgot to add the potatoes.  When I went to order them, I realized that shipping is like $12 no matter how big your order.  For $10 plants, that seemed outrageous.  So I decided to give the Home Depot potato plants a shot.  Even though they looked ridiculous before going into the ground (they were indoors and reaching like crazy to try to find sunlight) so far, the majority of them seem to be thriving.  These were slightly cheaper than the nursery potatoes, so if they thrive and taste good this might not be a fail after all!!!!

I also planted cucumbers, but as of yet, don't think I messed anything up with them (fingers crossed.)  But the way this garden has gone this year, it will probably be the year of "weird and random cucumber disease" that destroys all of the crops.  That would just be my luck.

The next gardening post will spotlight the one single success that I've had this year, and it's a beauty.


Corinne said...

Gardening is a learning experience! I'm jealous you have space to do it! We tried to grow tomato plants this year but there just isn't enough sunshine in our apartment since we're surrounded by trees!

Post a Comment