Garden Friday – Summer arrived!

Garden Friday is a regularly scheduled feature on Our Mother’s Keeper.  Growing your own food, no matter the scale, helps both the pocketbook and the environment.  We anticipate that this space can be one that provides inspiration and answers questions regarding the planing, harvesting, and consumption of edible gardens.  Because gardening is very dependent upon your climate, please make sure you identify your general region (Wasatch Front, arid SW, Pacific NW, coastal, etc) when asking questions.

After a very long and very wet winter and spring, summer arrived this week in the PNW.  How do I know?  No rain and my peas are blooming.

The peas blooming is kind of interesting because I actually figured my peas were not going to bloom this year.  I put them in around President’s day in Feb.  Some I transplanted, others I direct seeded.  Peas normally have 65 days until harvest.  May came and went and nothing.  Then on Tuesday, white flowers.  Amazing how nature corrects herself.

Did anything bloom in your garden this week?  Has summer arrived?


16 responses to “Garden Friday – Summer arrived!

  1. mfranti June 10, 2011 at 10:57 am

    Sweet allysum, some calendula, orange wallflower, some mystery wildflowers, more columbine, bachelor button. I’ve got buds on my clematis and larkspur too. I’m really looking forward to their blooms

    I finally got some veggies in the ground– and they’re not dead yetI It’s been so cool around here, I’m worried about putting squash and melons in the ground.

    What do you think, Nicole?

  2. reader Rachel June 10, 2011 at 11:46 am

    We have a tomato flower! But the other tomatoes I transplanted outside yesterday got eaten down to the cotyledons. I wish the quail would eat bindweed instead.

    We’ve been eating lettuce, greens, and spinach out of our garden, and today I harvested more mint to make tea (and to give the dianthus and thyme some breathing room).

  3. mfranti June 10, 2011 at 11:49 am

    Rachel, I had to cover my Caladium with plastic bottles to keep the snails/slugs from eating the shoots.

    You might try it too. Fortunately, I haven’t had that problem (fingers crossed).

  4. Alliegator June 10, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    My peas are blooming too! They’re the healthiest peas I’ve had in a couple of years at least. I guess they’ve liked all the rain.

    The corn and beans are coming up out in the big garden, and I’m still just waiting on the squash and pumpkins (in the raised beds and the big garden) to come up.

    Strawberries are getting bigger, but aren’t changing color yet, my mouth is watering for those…

    Fruit in the fruit trees are getting big enough that I can tell the crop will be smaller (thanks to the late freezes) but we will get some fruit this year.

    My tomatoes and peppers aren’t looking so great. They took some hail damage and aren’t recovering very fast.

    The roosters are crowing like mad (all 20 of them), so tomorrow is the day they get harvested. My Mister will do the initial killing, then the kids and I are going to help pluck. I go back and forth about whether we’re teaching them to value their food, or scarring them for life… We’ll see how it goes.

  5. Nicole I June 10, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    Ohh… I forgot my strawberry plants are blooming too!

    Mfranti – I’m finding that my squash and cucumbers in full sun last week are doing fine even though we are averaging about a cool 68 degrees. The ones in the shade, not so much. So I’m thinking it probably depends.

  6. margie June 10, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    I have a little green tomato about the size of a radish. And I have harvested my first radishes and am enjoying them. My cantaloupe has all but given up. Only a few good leaves, all the rest are swiveled and brown. Zucchini, on the other hand will have conquered southwest Ada county soon.

  7. mfranti June 10, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    Has anyone ever tried to dig up pumpkin/squash volunteers and transplant them? I’ve heard they don’t take to being moved.

    I have a bunch of pumpkin volunteers from some seed that found its way in shady front yard.

    They look great but I’m thinking they’ll never fruit in the less than four hours of sun the area gets.

  8. Nicole I June 10, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    Mfranti – all squash family plants struggle with transplanting. But, I think you are right to be concerned that you wouldn’t see fruit in such a shady area. You really have nothing to lose in attempting to transplant a couple. Just dig generously to minimize the root damage.

  9. reader Rachel June 10, 2011 at 5:55 pm

    I worry that the little plants would bake in plastic bottles, but I may give it a try. Last year all of our tomatoes got eaten down to the nub, but they recovered. We put netting over pvc hoops for our raised beds, so the plants there are safe and doing well.

    My little guy has already eaten 2 strawberries, and we have several more green ones plumping on the plants. And we have cherries, plums, and apples on our little trees.

  10. Mark Brown June 10, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    Here in the Arizona desert we are harvesting our summer squash.

  11. bsjb June 29, 2011 at 8:55 pm

    I’ve picked tons of peas. A few tiny strawberries (have them in too small of containers). Green onions. Lettuce. Potatoes. Peppers (indoors). Looking forward to corn, tomatoes, squash, carrots, kohlrahbi, beans and more potatoes.

  12. Nicole I June 29, 2011 at 9:37 pm

    My peas are going like gangbusters right now too! Oh, and my lettuce. It is so fun when the beginning of the summer bounty starts!

    How do your peppers indoors? Given how entirely pathetic mine are doing outside, I’m reconsidering if I should even try to get them outdoors at all.

  13. mfranti June 29, 2011 at 10:20 pm


    how big are your pepper plants right now? itty bitty and sickly?
    depending on their size, take a plastic liter bottle (yes, I said 1 liter) cut off the bottom and stick it in the ground. It’s worked wonders for the sad little pepper and tomato plants that the snails got to. They’re still thriving, even in this 95 degree heat.

    I did the same with corn/squash seeds, and large tomato branch that I carelessly snapped off .

    I use a1-2 skinny bamboo stake to anchor the bottle down. If that doesn’t make sense, I’ll ‘splain.

  14. mfranti June 29, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    Mark, though I’m jealous of your squash harvesting, I’m not jealous of your ridiculous heat.

    If you have squash, you also have melons and corn and peppers.

  15. Nicole I June 29, 2011 at 11:13 pm

    Oh, the pepper plants are probably around 12 inches tall.. .they just haven’t ever recovered from transplanting outside a week ago. I think they are rebelling against this very cool spring. I probably ought to try covering them and see if they recover at all.

  16. mfranti June 29, 2011 at 11:18 pm

    12 inches, 2 liter bottle or juice bottle.

    I always cover my transplants. first with shade cloth and then a cloche if they need it.

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