This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. But Skippy always stood by me and was a great friend. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps and garden with me. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees and berry bushes, chickens and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Today: Planted in the garden next to my house seeds for two double rows of soybeans (Envy and Butterbean) with soy bean inoculant. Also two double rows of bush beans (Tavera and Royal Burgandy) and two poles of Chinese pole bean. In my community plot, I weeded and spread salt marsh hay in the paths.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

cukes, eggplants, and watermelon transplants

Today I transplanted cucumbers, eggplants and watermelons. I put them in the cold frame with covers removed - the warmest place I have. In the morning I prepared the soil - weeded, raked a pile of new compost flat, dug it in a little, and then raked the soil flat. It was so hot that I waited til evening to transplant the seedlings. It was dark when I finished planting and watering.

The cold frame is next to the robin nest - overfull with 4 big birdlets. I keep thinking they will fledge tomorrow. They don't fit in the nest anymore. Today they perched on the nest edges and flapped and preened. To sleep they stack on top of each other. They only know the world of their nest, their siblings and their parents bringing them worms.

I also prepared the beds for planting some bean seeds soon.

Friday, May 18, 2012

a busy week in the garden!

Wow! What a super week. I haven't posted because I've been busy gardening. Last weekend I tended my backyard. Monday I helped my parents in their garden - its all planted now and looks beautiful. Tuesday, I spent a long drizzly afternoon in my community plot. I brought in compost and planted lots of little seedlings. Like my parents, the beds are full now. The only garden still waiting for me is my side yard where the very warm weather plants (beans, watermelon, eggplants, cukes, etc) will go in. I think its probably the earliest I've ever gotten my gardens planted. The weather has been perfect this spring! I have lots of photos and will add them soon.

Monday, May 14, 2012

mom and dad's garden

mom and dads garden 006 mom and dads garden 005 mom and dads garden 007 mom and dads garden 004 On Monday, my parents and I worked a full day in their vegetable garden. We planted tomato, pepper, lettuce, sunflower, basil, cilantro, squashes, marigold, cosmos, daisy and cucumber seedlings. Dad staked his recently planted snow peas.

Some type of bug was eating the broccoli, cauliflower and bok choy that we planted a couple weeks ago. My guess it was the green caterpillar of the white cabbage butterfly. I replaced some of the seedlings, searched for green caterpillars (I found one) and then covered the patch with hoops and row cover.

We planted 4 types of pumpkins and winter squashes: Butternut, Buttercup, New England Pie pumpkin, Cinderella pumpkin (Rouge Vif d’Etampes) and a couple giant pumpkin seedlings. The giant pumpkins are at the edge of the compost pile and the other pumpkins an squashes just outside the garden fence. Last year, the squash vines took over the garden and even pulled down parts of the fence. This year they will have room to roam.

Last year I planted much too many cucumbers in Mom and Dad's garden. I thought they wouldn't want ANY this year, but, no, they want tons again. I planted 8 varieties: Diva, North Carolina pickling, Sumter pickling, Boston pickling, Straight Eight, Sweet Success, Tokiwa and Sooyow Nishiki. About 20 seedlings - and then Mom added a few more seeds for good measure. They grow up the 5 ft deer fence around the edge of garden, so they don't really take up any space. When my nephew comes to visit, he runs to the garden to pick cukes and eat them immediately. Then he gets a big grin on his face.

Dad wrote down all the varieties and where they were planted for his records and then we called it a day. As we were marveling about the full garden, Mom remembered the beans - we forgot to leave room to plant beans! Arrgh. Well, as Mom emailed to me later in the week, they found a place to squeeze in 2 rows.

skippy by mom and dads garden 009

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Friday, May 11, 2012

seedlings

seedlings 043 seedlings 019 seedlings 049 seedlings 046 seedlings 045 seedlings 040 seedlings 022 seedlings 013 seedlings 008 seedlings 003 These are photos of my seedlings growing this past week. They have been inside til today when I moved them out to my cold frame. I hope the weather will be warm enough to plant them soon.

Skippy

skip 066 - Copy another garden animal .... Looks like I need to start doing some weed whacking on those paths.

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robin nest

robin nest, may 5,7,9,11 Today I realized there are 4 chicks in the robin nest outside my window. They are growing very fast. I will live stream video until they fledge: http://www.livestream.com/robininthegarden

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Sunday, May 06, 2012

photos of my plot

my plot 051
my plot 057potato bed 060
asparagus bed 058

This weekend, I planted bunch of seedlings. Broccoli, parsnips, carrots, beets, bok choy, radicchio, and onions. I see that several plants from last year reseeded: bachelor buttons, borage and dill. I also planted a bed of potatoes and expanded my asparagus bed.

new arbor

new arbor 094

I have a new addition to my community plot. My husband made me an arbor. We found a couple of trellises on sale at a local garden shop. He made a cross pieces for the top. I am looking forward to planting squash or cucumbers up and over this.

critters ate my broccoli seedlings

eaten broccoli 055
eaten broccoli seedlings 089 protected broccoli seedlings 092

Last Thursday, I planted 12 little broccoli seedlings. Saturday morning I checked on them and some critter had eaten the tops off of 3 or 4 of them. I think it was probably chipmunks (too early for baby rabbits and cutworms don't eat off just the leaves). My solutions was to replant my extra seedlings and cover the plot with hoops and row cover. I hope this works. I haven't had this problem before.

birds in my garden today

yellow throated sparrow 077 black and white warbler 071

The spring migration is on! My garden had lots of activity today. Many birds I did not see. These two I did. I love the song of the white-throated sparrow "Old Sam Peabody, Peabody, Peabody".

The robins in the nest by my garden had two chicks hatch today. My webcam will stream until they fledge: http://www.livestream.com/robininthegardenhttp://livestre.am/1SmUO

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hatchling!

I just noticed that a baby robin has hatched!!! There is a little ball of pink that I saw as the mother was shifting her position. It must have just hatched this morning.

    http://www.livestream.com/robininthegarden 

newly hatched robin chick 099

Not the best photo - I didn't want to disturb them too long.

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Thursday, May 03, 2012

missed potatoes

srping potatoes 005 While working plot today I found some potato sprouts in last years' potato bed. Beneath the sprouts, I dug up three spuds. They are so firm and fresh! I'm looking forward to bacon and new potatoes for breakfast.

transplanting to my plot

This afternoon I transplanted a bunch of seedlings to my community garden plot. I planted out broccoli, cauliflower, onions, beets, carrots, parsnips, radicchio, and two varieties of bok choy. Yesterday I planted a full bed of potatoes and expanded my asparagus bed. I added several barrels of compost to my beds prior to planting. Everything is looking good. I did not have my camera with me today. But I am thinking that with this drizzly wet weather, the new transplants will look really good in a couple days for a photo.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

mom and dad's garden

mom and dads garden 036 mom and dads garden - spreading c0mpost 019 mom and dads garden - first planting 024 I've been helping my parents with their garden. Early this spring, on a March day that broke records (temperature in the 80's!), my son and I spread and dug in 3 cubic yards of compost. We also planted peas, lettuce and root vegetables. Last Friday, I brought them more seedlings and seeds. The garden is looking great. Mom is already picking a little new lettuce and using up the kale that overwintered. I got my potatoes and some extra asparagus roots planted at my community plot today, but still no seedlings (other than a few very early tomatoes). I hope I will get to do some transplanting in my garden soon.

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Tuesday, May 01, 2012

peas trellis up

peas 018 peas 006 peas 020 We have gotten several days of well needed rain. My peas are happy and growing fast. I put some string trellis up for them.

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soggy tree peony

soggy tree peony  017 The peony petals are weighted down by the rain.

















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