Thursday, April 29, 2010

Growing things

I thought that I would share a few photos of the vegetable garden.  We do raised bed gardening for the most part, although we do have a lot of containers on the deck for tomatoes and herbs.  The raised beds are great because they are easy to weed and water, have high production, and are just plain cool.  So here are a few photos:

 The garden where a lot of good things are grown.  There is a lot of room to set up many raised beds.  We use the raked leaves for mulch around the beds.
Beans are coming up.  Note the drip irrigation system. 

The lettuce is ready to pick. Can't get enough of this stuff for salads.

The compost bins are filled.  We actually have four of these large bins for storing organic material used in compost.

Good amended soil from the compost bins.  The soil on the property is rich but the compost really makes it good for growing veggies.  We add some sanitized cow manure too.

Ahhh.....parsley.  We expect to see the black swallowtail caterpillars show up for a feast soon. That's why we grow a lot of parsley--the caterpillars have to eat too.  Nothing like fresh parsley and other herbs from the garden. 
So there you have it.  The garden is a thing of beauty this time of year.  However, by mid July when the heat and humidity have done their work,  I will long for the green freshness of the growing plants seen here.  Summer isn't kind to plants in this area.  There will be leggy tomatoes, borers in the squash, scraggly beans.  But the eggplant will survive and stand tall and proud with its purple fruit.  We will become innovative chefs of eggplant, fixing it in many ways.  I think that my favorite is to grill it with a sprinkling of cinnamon on top. 

Gardens are a great passion in this area.  The ones downtown are formal and not filled with anything edible. Our flower beds are like the English gardens with a riot of different plants in many colors.  Only the vegetables are lined up in even patterns, like soldiers in a phalanx.  It must be imprinted in the genes, a throwback to ancient ancestors--the need to grow something that is not only edible but pleasing to the eye and the psyche.


  1. Same here- this is the season where the garden is all lovely, green hope. By July- forget it.
    I like your garden a lot. Y'all do it right. Labors of love.

  2. That is truly impressive, Syd. Really.

  3. Lovely. When you're done there, could you please spare some weeding time and discipline out here? I thought not...

    Blessings and aloha...

  4. This is your vegetable garden??? How do you have time for all the meetings and activities you do? This looks huge. Like the size of a community garden. Huge I tell ya!

  5. There's nothing like fresh-picked lettuce IMHO. I had a vegetable garden for years. Every day, in season, my daughter and I would go out to the garden about 4 p.m., when the plants had been photosynthesizing all day and at the height of their sweetness, and pick whatever was ripe. That's what we'd have for dinner. Those were some of my best memories. Thanks for the reminder. Bon appetit!

  6. Great garden Syd. Obviously a lot of planning and work went into this.

  7. Syd:
    I am SO jealous of this garden! :)
    I bet it looks even better in person. I am really passionate about gardening. When I was a child, we had a large vegetable garden. My mom used to discipline me by making me rake leaves and pull weeds. She didn't know until I told her a few years ago that those punishments were actually hours of pleasure for me. I look forward to the day when I can have a space for a garden like yours. I just put flowers in our front beds, and my daughter chose a dwarf sweet Georgia peach tree to go in front of her window. We are looking forward to watching the fuzzy green "rocks" become delicious ripe desserts. :) Thank you for sharing your little piece of homemade paradise with us!

  8. Wow. Some great looking garden!

  9. Those colors are so gorgeous they almost look photoshopped. Magnificent.

  10. Superb garden Syd. Very neat and very green. I am so green with envy. Thanks for the photos

  11. I should have known you would have such an organized and beautiful garden :)

  12. very cool. we were out working in our garden today...there is just something about putting your hand to the earth and watching it grow...

  13. Syd,
    Your gardens are lovely. Reminds me of my grandparent's with the beautiful lettuce. We used to eat it right out of the bowl, with salt,pepper,vinegar and oil. Thanks for sharing it brought up a great memory!

  14. growing life and growing love, hope..
    what you do is cool!

  15. I had to laugh to myself. My gardening consists of one tomato plant hanging upside down from a Topsy Turvy. I bought the tomato plant and didn't plant it for a week. It's not looking too great, but we'll see. :)


  16. love it! I consider this a sign from God! Our neighbors have been converting their garden, section by section, in to raised beds. Our garden's are side by side. I'm paying more attention to mine because theirs is so nice...
    So, I've decided to one raised bed this year for cukes...balance. Next year I'll add one for...say...peppers.

  17. Your garden is truly a thing of beauty.

  18. Beautiful garden. Fresh lettuce is probably the only fresh veg I have not had. I have a picture of me with a hoe in our veggie garden in Rawlins Wyo. I was about 5. Last garden I can remember doing.
    Oh and we had fresh rhubarb.
    But you see, I have solved the message that is hidden in this post. GROWTH.

  19. Of all the pics you have posted, this must be dearest to my heart because I am so keen on gardening. The design of the garden with raised beds is both practical and beautiful. The soil looks so fertile.

    I hope you have a bountiful summer.

  20. cool.

    you will look even !! more fabulous than mimi kirk at 71 at this rate :)

    well yeah. you cant have too much veggies. how you found the time to do all that while working full time in a demanding role I'll never know. Impressive! Plants are cool.

  21. It seems as if every time an edible something is planted round here the only crop raised is hungry squirrels and other rodents. Fresh from the back would be cool but the teeth marks in the produce kind of put me off a bit.

  22. Peas are up and our root vegi's are started. By the end of the month the rest of our food will be in.
    Hope we don't lose our tomato's again
    that was a really costly blight last year.
    We have more space this year for corn and pumpkins (-the little ones are good eating!)
    Our compost is lovely, 4 huge piles in different stages. Several small ones up front for flowers and trees.
    I like our long narrow beds, easy and satisfying to weed, water and pick !

  23. That is one nice veggie garden. Great pictures. Blessings.


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