Sunday, May 23, 2010

Market Begins

We went to the first market.  We had bags of dried peppers and basil plants.  It was COLD.  The entire time.  The wind blew.  But people were troopers and came.  However, most of them did not want basil plants.  The peppers did better than expected (by me anyway).  Other vendors had lettuce, spinach, and chard and lots of plants.  I personally was excited that there is a vendor of hand spun yarn--beautiful stuff!
We have a new layout this year, and I think everyone was a little nervous.  The city agreed to close down the street, so now the vendor spots bump out into it.  It's going to be interesting to see how everyone gets in, because once you're set up, no one can get around you.  If you're in the middle, and you're late, it could be problematic.  We paid for a truck spot for the whole year, so we won't be moving around at all.  Nor will we be back in our corner.  We're kind of in the middle of the truck spots, on the Adams side of the gap for the library.  Ours is the stand on the right in the photo, with the green canopy.
We will NOT be at market next week, but plan to return we basil the week after.
The zucchini planted a few weeks ago had to get out of its Root Trainers, even if it will be in the 30s for the next few nights.  The roots were forming a mat on the tray.  So we put some of them in--the yellows, star shaped (new this year), and some of the regulars.  Sorry no photos; everything looks so sad after transplanting I usually like to give them a day or two before photographing them so I don't get depressed looking at the photos.  Shawn also managed to get two varieties of potatoes planted.  Because of all the rain this week, we weren't able to rototill anything.  The rest of the garden time today (which was not rainy or as cold) was spent weeding.  At least everything pulled easily!

The radishes planted back in, February was it?, are finally ready and delicious.  A close look will show the flea beetle damage.  All the seeds planted before the cold spell have neglected to germinate.

We did bring all the plants out again today--first time since last week.  They were exposed to some pretty good wind.  Almost all of them are really too big; we probably should start plants later next year.  Generally, though, they have strong stems and good color.  I think overall they look better than in previous years.  We'll see how long we can keep it up.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Starting the Real Work

As much as I'd been hoping for warm weather, I don't think I quite internalized that it would mean that from now on any time spent not working in the garden is guilt ridden.  And that I'd need to start thinking about sunburns and carrying water with me.
But, it was beautiful.  Everything was tilled up.
The greenhouse plants started the process of hardening off.  It got quite windy, and they stood up really well.  I was a little shocked.

Teri helped with the onion planting.  All three varieties are now in the ground (yellow, red, and sweet).

I also discovered that the flea beetles have infested the arugula and radishes.  I covered them up, but don't think it'll help.  I suppose I should do some research on what actually would help rather than wringing my hands helplessly.
I do think it might help that I planted the cauliflower and broccoli and cabbage and spinach seeds in a protective remay tube.
Shawn also planted carrots, lettuce, and cilantro.  I got another bunch of radishes in the ground.  The peas seem to be getting ahead of the quail, but they've started taking dust baths in the newly germinated radishes.  The chard is also up.  They are at least partially covered now.
We all worked on the endless weeding.  The straw purchased from D&B was a big mistake--full of wheat and other grass seeds.  The other straw mulch is actually keeping the weeds down.  At least the buttonweed is rewarding to kill at the moment--most are big and have giant tap roots that are easily broken through with a shovel.  Maximum reward for minimum effort.  Unlike the grass, which is the opposite.
I brutally cut back the basil which were way too tall for their pots.  So I guess that's the first crop and that I'll be making some pesto.  The plants actually look fine, which is good, because NEXT WEEK IS THE FIRST MARKET!!  Hopefully people will come and hopefully those people will buy basil, because that's all we're going to have.  
In addition, I mowed the orchard (big accomplishment).
Shawn cut up all the potatoes; they are ready to be planted and leave the living room.

Monday, May 10, 2010



 Cinco de Mayo snow

New babies--dill, fennel, lettuce, etc.

 Other new babies--squash and melons

 The newly transplanted.

 Some of the greenhouse.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Spring, in the sense that temperatures ranged from the mid-20s to the high 60s

Monday--I did get some radishes planted.  So now from south to north it's radishes, chard, radishes, arugula.  The lettuce in the house germinated!  So rewarding to have an instant gratification garden.  In other news, Teri reports that I shouldn't blame the holes in the artichokes exclusively on earwigs.  Apparently some day while we were at work there was marble-sized hail.  Usually that doesn't make an impression until all of the plants are out and flattened.

Wednesday--Happy Cinco de Mayo!  Yesterday it was 29 degrees when we got up, and this morning there was snow on the ground.  So far everything's surviving in the greenhouse (although the basil is getting yellower by the moment).  I hauled the artichokes in last night; they really do look bad, poor things.  Tomorrow night it's supposed to be 25 degrees.  We may put Remay (ground cover) on everything in the greenhouse, or we may sleep with the thermometer next to our heads.  What's to be done about the peas, radishes, and arugula?  We'll see whether they survive that cold.  Not feeling so proud of myself for planting the chard and next batch of radishes any more.

Sunday--it did get down to 25.9 two nights.  We took no precautions (except bringing the artichokes in), and lucked out.  Despite everything the zucchini, watermelon, and cantaloupe all germinated.  Today was beautiful.  Shawn transplanted many of the rest of the peppers, got everything thoroughly watered, and fertilized the garlic.  I focused on the yard--mowing, weed-eating, checking on the birdhouses, etc.  The peas are this week's victim of the vagaries of the outside world.  I think quail are chewing on them.

I can't get the photos to upload; I'll try an all photos post tomorrow(ish).

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Plenty of Rain

Last weekend was beautiful, but I had to drive to Seattle for work.  This weekend would be well spent driving somewhere; it's been about 40 degrees, raining and the wind blowing like crazy.

We did get the shallots weeded last weekend.

Also, Shawn created some attractive garlic labels.  We've usually worked with just a map, so until it's dug up usually we don't know which variety it is.  The plastic labels we put in in the fall are for some reason attractive to the elk, who pull them out, bite holes in them, and scatter them about.  We're hoping that these do better.

All progresses in the greenhouse.  The aphid scare that presented itself seems to have been somewhat neutralized by the soapy water.  Due to infestation, the artichokes were moved outside.  That seems to have controlled the aphids, but the earwigs have done way more damage.  The leaves are very holey (oops, forgot to take a picture).  I believe that earwigs are the most despised insect in our garden.

Teri and Shawn transplanted all of the tomatoes and the eggplant.  They look really good!  The greenhouse is filling up, but not overflowing yet.

Today, since it was too wet to plant things in the actual ground, we started more things for the greenhouse. They include fennel, dill, red basil, cilantro, parsley, and lettuce in the tiny cell tray and various kinds of summer squash in the root trainers.  (Shawn always likes to have the first zucchini from the Grande Ronde Valley at market.)  All the seeds have been dragged out again and sorted into yet more piles--things we're done with for the year, things that should go out into the actual ground ASAP, things that are going to wait until the soil warms up dramatically.
Saturday I researched pinching back the basil.  It's a simple enough concept when it's already a bushy plant, but I don't get how far to go when there aren't any branches yet.  While reading various non-helpful websites, I did come across the tidbit that when the temperature drops below 50 degrees basil leaves turn yellow.  That was good news as Shawn and I had earlier in the day been pondering what was wrong with some of the basils.  Was there some sort of bug?  Lack of nutrition?  It's good to know it's just because it was cold.  Sunday I just nipped back the growing tip of half the basil.  We'll see what happens.
Tomorrow we will hopefully fertilize--a delicious combination of seaweed and fish emulsion applied foliarly.  Then we'll have to stay out of the greenhouse until the stench dissipates.
I did get some chard planted in the ground.  We'll see if it comes up.  I'd like to get the next batch of radishes in.

April 24 Photos

May 2 Photos


Dick and Sandy were kind enough to give us their extra broccoli and cauliflower.  If we can prevent the flea beetles, should be yummy.

There will be at least one apricot!