Garden Update - Week of July 2-8 Posted on 09 Jul 21:06 , 0 comments

Gardening can be fruitful or a failure based on the decisions you make when laying it out. For example, instead of buying our squash and zucchini plants this year, we planted seeds. In mid-May, using Accuweather’s extended forecast feature, we saw no freezing temperatures predicted between then and Memorial Day weekend, which is when we normally plant (last frost at Grosbeak Gardens is usually around Memorial Day, but we’ve had frost in early June). We took a gamble and planted. When the plants got to the thinning stage, we chose 6 we thought looked good and removed the rest. To play it safe, we saved more plants then we probably needed to. And as a result, we have an abundance of summer squash. This week alone, we picked 9 gorgeous fruit. Good thing we spent a glorious week at Grosbeak Gardens or we’d have arrived on Friday to find squash 2 feet long and usable only for seed! Another example of a gardening decision gone right: our tomatoes. For the past 3 years, we planted indeterminate plants or vining tomatoes. You need to put tomato cages around these plants and then train them to grow around the cage. Each year, our vines grew to 8 feet, and the leaves would turn yellow and die as they grew. Starting at the bottom, we pruned the dying leaves. By the time there were tomatoes on the vine, the plant was little more than a long stalk with a few leaves on the top and fruit rotting on the vine. This year we planted determinate plants or bushy tomatoes. No plant is over 3 feet tall and every one of them is leafy and full of tomatoes. I counted over 50 before giving up! If this continues, we’ll be pulling out the food mill and making sauce by summer’s end. As for bad decisions, I can think of only one (so far) this year: we chose not to trellis our peas, having them attach themselves to the garden fence instead. As a result, the vines weren’t that tall or that hearty. Though we harvested a fair amount of peas, we know we could have done better. It’s only Monday, but I’m looking forward to the weekend and the surprises that await us at Grosbeak Gardens! Gardeners—how’s your garden growing? What good and bad decisions did you make this year?