The Front Yard Vegetable Garden
June 2013

This post has a LOT of pictures so it might take a while to load!

Last year I embarked on a project so huge, so satisfying I couldn’t imagine not doing it again. It was a lot of work of course, as most worthwhile projects are, but it paid back in dividends.

What am I referring to?  It could only be one thing.

Bird Theatre:  The play I put on using only birds I found in my front yard as actors. If you’re a raccoon or cat I’m sure you’ve heard of it.

Of course trying to get sparrows and crows to get along let alone pretend they love each other in a feathered friends version of Romeo & Juliet wasn’t easy but getting them to wear the wigs was a nightmare.

That same year I also started a Front Yard Vegetable Garden.  Growing vegetables is much easier than putting on a bird play.

The entire Front Yard Vegetable Garden for this year is now officially planted, with the last of the vegetables (the sweet potatoes) going in last week.  I’ve moved things around a bit from last year and added a few new things.

Behold the Front Yard Vegetable Garden 2013.

 

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Things may look a bit bare now, but you’d be surprised at how much this garden will fill out by the end of the month.
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I’ve tried to keep things relatively symmetrical when you look at the house with cauliflower flanking the brick path up to the porch, and a Dinosaur Kale at the end of each row.  Because it’s so cold tolerant the Dinosaur Kale will add greenery right up until February!  It’s like having an edible evergreen.
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Onions &amp ;- Potatoes

 

Last year my neighbour gifted me with a whole whack of garlic, all different and interesting varieties.

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They’re already huge and growing scapes.
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This is the crop of squash I won’t get a single squash from.  Or I might.  I’m going to experiment with this crop, trying a variety of ways to discourage vine borers and squash bugs.  The first thing I’m going to do is cover the stems with either plastic pipe, or nylon to prevent the vine borers.  Since I know this is my experimental crop I won’t be too disappointed when it dies a slow and painful death.  In July, after the risk of vine borers and squash bugs has passed, I’ll plant a new crop of squash that should be ready to harvest in the fall.

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Yellow Onions.
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I use this huge bamboo teepee to support my  heirloom tomatoes which get big.  BIG.  I plant one tomato on each side and it seems to work out perfectly. As the tomatoes grow, I tie them to the bamboo support.

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The first thing ready to pick in anyone’s garden is almost always the ubiquitous radish.

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Again, I know this looks bare and like wasted space, but it will fill in.  I hope.  If not, I’ll throw some heads of lettuce from the grocery store on it to give the illusion of a productive and beautiful garden.  I could go nuts I guess and plant ridiculous things there.

OMG.  Like coconuts!  Just lay out an entire row of coconuts and explain to anyone who asks that of course you can grow coconuts.   Where have you been living?  I bet you’ve never even attended a bird theatre. Luddite.
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Ground Cherries!
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Beets-2As you can see, the beets started indoors have already formed beets.  They aren’t huge beets, but it won’t be long before they are.  I predict by starting them indoors I’ll have beets to eat by July 1st.  The second planting will get me beets later in the summer and the third planting I do in July will produce the beets I store for the winter.
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These are the carrots I germinated with paper towels.
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These are the carrots of hope.  And they are not doing well.  I still pray that one day I’ll come out and they’ll be bursting out of the ground, their leafy arms stretched over their heads proclaiming WE’RE HERE! WE WEREN’T DEAD!  WE WERE JUST NAPPING!

I may have to give up on growing carrots this year and try to grow something a bit easier.  Like a stegosaurus.

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This one peculiar looking area is home to 3 different plantings that will mature at  different times.
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Back to the important stuff.  The Art of Doing Stuff little bird Theatre is proud to announce that this years production will be a theatre in the round version of Cats.  Open casting call tomorrow.  Costume fittings to follow.   This is a non paying gig, but all participants will receive a home grown coconut.

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78 Comments

  1. Chelly says:

    I absolutely love your post. You are hilarious (and secretly am still wondering if the bird play was for real 🤔😂😂) Your garden is inspiring. Thank you for the many great ideas I’m looking forward to trying out. Minus the coconuts of course, ah what the heck … go big or go home right😉

  2. fotini says:

    HI Nicole;

    I really enjoyed your article. Just a quick query: I wondered why you’re not using any mulch? I love your garden; thanks for sharing the pleasure it brings you, with us, especially those of us who have to garden vicariously. I’ve just moved to Bahrain, and it’s EXTREMELY hot here, so just waiting for the weather to chill out a bit and then the planting begins!! Any idea where I can get coconut seeds from? hee hee thanks again.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Fotini – I’m Karen, not Nicole. Not sure who Nicole is, LOL. I don’t use mulch in the front yard vegetable garden because it’s too difficult with all the seedlings and plants basically. I don’t have a lot of weeds and in terms of moisture, once the plants fill out there’s no problem keeping most of the moisture in the soil. I do use mulch in my back garden where there are lots of perennials. Good luck with the heat! ~ karen

  3. Nicole says:

    Hi Karen
    Just wondering if you amended your soil in anyway before planting? Thanks, Nicole

  4. mommynearest says:

    You are a great green thumb role model. I have terrible luck with cucumbers! This year the next day after planting, in the night, sneaky cut worms came and snipped a bite out of their stalks, they were hanging on to life by a thread. Propped them back up with a mound of soil and are still living..

    • Karen says:

      GASP! Cutworms got half of my corn! Horrible little things! Good job you could save your cucumbers! ~ karen

  5. Jennifer says:

    I tried your tip for cutting off the base of organic celery bunches and sitting them in water for a week. It worked! I have 2 mini-celery bunches growing in my raised garden bed. I also tried planting a few little green onions from the store — they still had some roots, so I took a chance. They’re growing a bit. I love the grand experiment that is gardening!

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