As I’ve made pretty clear with the last few points, we’ve been friggin’ busy these last few weeks, but while we’ve been busy inside the house, the garden has been doing its thing with some minimal intervention from us (aside from a little weeding here and there).
Brooke planted green beans a few weeks ago, and only in the past few days, they’ve finally started looking pretty good. We had a bout of cooler, rainy weather that wasn’t all that conducive to our hot-weather plants, so now that we’ve had weather in the upper-80s and lower-90s for the past 5 days, the beans are finally making headway.
The green pepper plants south of the beans are also finally looking better. It just took some sun showing up for them to finally take off. I wouldn’t say we’re out of the woods yet on them, though, as they’re pretty small. Brooke also added some sunflower seeds to the north part of the plot, so they’re up and moving around. We’ll see how they turn out…
The tomatoes are also finally taking off. I pulled the milk jugs off of them a few weeks ago because the plants were getting too big, but even then, they slowed down their growth due to the aforementioned cooler weather. The four varieties we’re running are all moving at around 3 plants apiece. We’ll have to see. Got another month or so to go on them…but we’re optimistic…
Today, I tilled up the last bit of the garden that wasn’t planted yet. Brooke put in more kale and spinach, as that part of the garden is relatively shady and will hopefully give us some leafy greens later on in the summer. I think this is the first time we’ve tried planting those things in mid-June, so we’ll see how that goes.
Speaking of spinach and kale, the former is mostly done (though they’re still in the garden), and the latter is ready for harvest. The kale is still looking pretty good though, so Brooke will probably pull it sometime later this week.
In the plot that previously hosted the radishes, Brooke planted zucchini. We’ve planted it before, but I don’t recall much coming of it. Instead of a mound, Brooke put them in a row. Again, this is a “we’ll see” kinda deal.
The garlic is still doing its thing, too. Waiting for them to be done!
Speaking of radishes, we got a lot! Only a few of them, thus far, are what I’d qualify as “good.” A few of the ones I’ve tried are pretty tough and fibrous, but I’m not ready to toss them all out yet.
The real story of the summer thus far is the strawberries, though. We’re getting at least a bowl like this every day, but we’ve been fighting against the slugs for them… These tiny little things keep getting the strawberries right at the “ripe” point, so we’re picking them just a day early to make sure we get some. We’ve given some to the neighbors and to my parents so far, and even with that, we’ve ended up with enough to put on ice cream and put in a breakfast cake, so we’re very satisfied with the crop!
In other news, Brooke planted some sage and bee balm in the raised bed to go with the other herbs. They’re not doing much yet, but the lettuce is finally looking good. We’ll probably have more salads next week, or at least some sandwiches. Too bad we don’t have tomatoes to go with a BLT just yet…
Today, Brooke started picking cherries! Infamously, we got a single, solitary, sad little cherry last year. This year, we’ve got quite a few more than that! Brooke said this was maybe 10% of what’s on the tree right now, so we’ve got a bit to go. We’ll probably pick every other day or so, but we’ve heard that rain can make them split, and as it’s supposed to rain the next few days, we may have to pick a few early again. Still, better than last year!
Speaking of “better than last year,” peaches. So many peaches. All the peaches.
And last but not least, the bees are doing their thing! Again, it’s been hot these last few days, so they’ve been bearding frequently. The existing hive is the one with the ridiculous numbers, but the new hive is still doing fine. I’ve noticed some bearding, but there simply just aren’t as many bees in that southern hive as in the northern one. Brooke needs to hop into the hive and see how much honey they’re putting away, but I would bet we’ve got enough to harvest by July 4th.