Friday, April 11, 2014

Chives

Started my chives in a pot out in the deck this evening. I missed having a steady supply to snip while grilling and cooking in the backyard. I always had a bunch when living in Georgia, but wasn't able to get any going last year here in Philadelphia.

Squash, zucchini and melons

Last I started my summer and winter squash, zucchini and a melon. I hoping this is the year we finally have success with zucchini. I just haven't had any luck growing zucchini as of yet. 
Here is a picture of how the tomatoes, peppers, okra and basil are doing.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Lettuce, Cilantro and Arugula

Last night I finished sowing lettuce, cilantro and arugula into the raised beds. In doing so realized that my lettuce seed supply is running low, and I am missing a few varieties that I would like to grow, such as a butter crunch type.

A fellow gardener, Jody Torpey over at Vegetable Gardener, posted about a study done on different types of lettuce that I found very interesting, and plan on testing some of the varieties myself.

Planting Bolt Resistant Lettuce


I planted a large container of lettuce leaf 'Salad Bowl Blend' (from Botanical Interests) in spring. The seed packet did say it was one of the most heat tolerant and bolt resistant leaf lettuces available, but I didn't expect that I'd still be using the tender leaves in my summer salads. Talk about cut and come again!I've heard about gardeners being able to grow lettuce all summer, and now I guess I'm one of them.
Granted, not every garden is going to have the same conditions for lettuce growing as I've had this summer. The weather in Denver has had its ups and downs all season. Days of 90 to 100 degrees have been followed by milder weather. 
However, lettuce growers in other parts of our region may benefit from the results of a 2004 Colorado State University study. Students in the Horticulture and Landscape Architecture group conducted The Lettuce Bolting Resistance Project and the results are really interesting. 
The project studied 50 different lettuce varieties that were planted every two weeks from June to September. The students prepared the fields and used organic methods to maintain the lettuce.
The weather during the project was unusually hot and dry with 26 days above 90 degrees. In addition, there was some insect damage to crops.
The research showed that Batavian lettuce varieties resisted bolting the best. These varieties didn't bolt all season, even during the warmest weather. They could also be harvested at different stages during the growing season.
Nevada, Sierra and Tahoe were the standout cultivars.
The Butter varieties were the second-best lettuce group to hold reasonably well against bolting.
Red Romaine lettuces were found to be good for individual leaf harvest and baby lettuce production.
Perhaps you'll want to conduct your own research to see which of these lettuce varieties resist bolting in your garden. There's still plenty of time for planting this season.
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Saturday, April 5, 2014

Reclaimed, Refinished Outdoor Sofa

When walking the dogs I noticed a neighbor was tossing out an outdoor coffee table. It looked like it had seen better days, but I figured it would be worth my trying to refinish it. So I carried it back, (which the dogs weren't too excited about, as made the rest of the walk awkward). I sanded it down, and then stained it the same color as the outdoor sofa I made last summer. So far I am happy with how our outdoor living room is coming along.







Monday, March 31, 2014

Okra

After living in Georgia for 10 years we came to love okra. So to bring a little bit of our "southern" roots up north, we are going to try to grow okra again. I sowed 6  seed pods for the raised bed, and an additional 2 for Julia Belén's section of her raised bed.  Okra being her choice of what she wants to grow this year. 

Spring Planting Guide

A couple of years ago I worked out a simple Spring Planting Guide in numbers, my sister just reminded me of it this morning, so I thought I would share it with everyone. Enjoy, and hopefully spring is really here, it has been a long winter, and I'm ready to get the garden going.


Friday, March 28, 2014

Broccoli

This morning between school drop off and biking to work I transplanted our broccoli that I had started in the basement. It's frost hardy so it should be fine as long as we don't drop into the teens again. If we do, I'll bring out my glass frames to protect them.