3 ½ months ago I decided to rip out all the shrubs and bushes in my front yard and plant a vegetable garden. I got blisters and a weird rash.
2 ½ months ago I planted my seeds. I got a sore back.
1 month ago things were starting to sprout. I got excited.
Today, the garden is a real garden. I got food.
I’m writing this monthly garden update to show you how much a garden can grow in just 30 days. How you can go from cute little ornamental looking plants to big huge vegetables you can eat. IN YOUR MOUTH! IN A MONTH!
The first set of pictures was taken a month after planting (May 21st). The second set of pictures, one month after that (June 20th).
A new addition to the left side of the yard is the burlap bag, which is housing a couple of sweet potato plants. The bag is actually a white feed sack (you could use a fabric grocery sac) that I wrapped with a swath of burlap. I’ve been waiting my whole blog life to be able to use the word swath.
More about the plastic on top later.
And remember the Organic feed sacks I wrapped all my Christmas presents in last year? One of them is now pregnant with sweet potato plants. Not actual sweet potatoes at this point, just the plants. And in fact “pregnant” might be implying the plants are a bit bigger than they actually are. Truth is they really aren’t even showing yet.
My sort of anaemic looking front walk 1 month ago.
My lush front walk today. It is swathed in plants. Does that work? I’m overdoing the swathed thing aren’t I?
The right side of the house 1 month ago. Note the tiny squiggle of a squash vine planted at the base of the rightmost pillar.
The right side of the house today.
The great big mass of squash isn’t only squash. Beside it is a zucchini plant. Which just happens to be growing zucchini.
Zucchini is famous for being the most prolific of vegetables. It is the John Grisham of the vegetable world. You know when zucchini have come into season because neighbours start locking their doors to prevent other neighbours from throwing bags of zucchini into the house.
Once the plant gets a bit bigger I’ll be making fried, cheese stuffed zucchini blossoms.
That little guy in there is a squash. Guess what? 2 days later the plant aborted him. It’s an actual thing. If the days are suddenly too hot, or too dry the plant will abort it’s vegetable babies. And there’s nothing you can do about it.
The side yard is where I planted a mass of potatoes which you can’t see in the before picture on the left.
One month later you can definitely see them in the right hand “after” picture. They are taking over. They’re so big and aggressive I can actually identify them as left or right handed.
My first tomato. No idea what kind it is. I forgot to label this one. By the look of it I’m gonna *guess* Green Zebra.
Buttercrunch lettuce. Before and after. In one month it grew to eating size, bolted and is now done. It’s now ready to be pulled out, fed to the chickens and replanted.
Freckles romaine, leaf lettuces and some kale peeking out of the right hand corner. All of these things can be picked continuously. Just pinch the outermost leaves off about 1″ from the base of the plant and they’ll all keep growing and growing throughout the season. You can do the same thing with Swiss Chard.
Onions. Red and Yellow.
Potatoes in peach basket.
I’ve moved my peach basket of Blue Russian potatoes to make way for a plot of sweet potatoes. I am almost positive I’ve planted way too many sweet potatoes in such a small space. But I couldn’t help myself. How could I?
To get sweet potatoes to grow in a climate they aren’t really meant to be grown in all you have to do is make sure they have the conditions they’re used to. They need HOT, dry soil. And by dry I mean dry, as in not overly wet and bog-like. Not parched.
To accomplish both of these things 1 – 2 weeks prior to planting sweet potatoes lay down a layer of black plastic. I went all out and used dark thermal plastic meant especially for heating up soil. I’m sure the plain black plastic would work fine too.
This thermal plastic will heat the soil underneath of it up at least 10 degrees.
Do you remember the celery I planted just for fun in the topiary type container? Just for fun? Figuring it would die? It is now twice as big as the celery that I have growing in the garden. TWICE AS BIG. Celery has shallow roots so it doesn’t need a big deep container, but I didn’t know how well it would do in such a small space. It done good.
Finally a bit more of a comprehensive look at what’s in the garden. Not included in the list are some things you can’t see very well. Like celery and fennel and a bay leaf plant. There’s arugula and garlic and a multitude of other things in different spots.
Gealous? Of my spelling? Let’s try that again … Jealous? Good. You should be. That’s the point of this. To incite a vegetable riot in you.
Because you still have time. This is how things exploded in a month. And you could have your very own orgasmic vegetable explosion.
If you’re in a similar climate (zone 5-6) you can go outside right now and plant carrots, lettuce, beans, and more. In the middle/end of August you can plant fall crops. At that time you can plant Kale, beets, carrots, lettuces, broccoli, and turnip. And I’m sure if I gave it some more thought … a lot more.
Wow. There really wasn’t a single funny thing in this post was there. Clearly I’m serious about my vegetables. Especially the left handed ones.