11 August 2009


It's been a while, so I thought I'd give you a garden update for August. Today, I'll share some photos of what I've been harvesting lately, and then tomorrow, I'll give you a look at how things are growing at this point in the season.

The time has definitely come in the summer for a full harvest. Yet again this year, I'm a little disappointed in the yields of many of my plants. Don't get me wrong, I'm still incredibly grateful and amazed that I'm even capable of growing one leaf of lettuce. But every year I expect to be swimming in produce, and it just doesn't quite happen that way for me. Not yet, anyways. I learned from the master gardeners at our farmers market that my brandywine tomato plants aren't getting pollinated, which explains why each plant has between one and four tomatoes on it. Not very many. My pepper plants are pretty small. I think I'm going to get a total of five bell peppers and one jalapeno, from four plants. And the super spicy asian pepper plants (Bhut Jolokia) are not even blossoming at all. Between my two eggplant plants, I think I'll get one fruit. And my chard is still pretty small. But like I said, I am grateful for what I do have. And this year is by far better than last, so I do feel the annual sense of improvement, and that's definitely something to be happy about.

So far, I've been picking a lot of beans, both green and purple string beans. Just before we left for Maine a couple weeks ago, I picked my first cucumber (and there's another one that's just about ripe, not to mention the two more on the vine growing bigger everyday!). Today I picked my third zucchini, and I have a feeling that the explosion is just around the corner. My yellow summer squash plants are still pretty small, but it looks like there's some fruits growing. I've also had one good harvest of chard. I had one "big" broccoli harvest, and have continued to pick small florets as they appear, but there's not much left. I don't think I'll plant broccoli again, unless I someday have tons of space. They take up so much room and don't produce that much, that even though we eat a lot of broccoli, my five plants were enough for about two meals.

When were leaving for our last trip, a couple of weeks ago, I went out to the garden the morning before we left to check things out as I was writing a note to Jared's brother who'd be watching the garden (and Freddie) while we were gone. It was then that I noticed the first cucumber was ready to be picked. I ended up bringing a bag on the plane filled with cut up cucumber, string beans, and some carrots from the farmer's market. When we arrived in Boston to hang out with a friend of mine for a few hours before heading to Maine, he offered us some hummus and pita chips. I said, "oh perfect, I brought some veggies from my garden!" He laughed at me, but admitted it was the best vegetable delivery he'd ever had (though maybe a little expensive, in the form of a plane ticket).

On the tomato front, I've been harvesting a lot of sun sugar cherry tomatoes (orange) and green cherries (they are seriously delicious). I've also been picking quite a few roma tomatoes. I'm not a huge fan of romas and am not even sure why I bought them. I guess they're good for sauce (although I once heard Lynn Rosetto Casper say to absolutely never use them for anything, so now I think twice about it). So I guess I should make some sauce, huh?

I've also been harvesting a lot of my medicinal plants, but I'll save that for its own post. I'm curious if any of you have been gardening this summer? How's it been going?


  1. Our yard is so shady that we never get the yield that we are hoping for. We've been getting a steady stream of beans and greens. We've had a few zucchini, but most of them were ready when we were out of town, so I think our friend took them. Still waiting on the tomatoes to ripen. We've never had luck with peppers, but we keep trying. Someday...

  2. we are having a pretty successful gardening season minus the fact that we lost all of our beautiful, heirloom tomatoes to late blight. we've had great chard, zucchini, cucumbers, lettuce, garlic, and several kinds of peppers. we are still waiting for tomatillos and potatoes, which we might lose to blight as well.

  3. we haven't had a very successful year. i think our tomatoes plants aren't pollinating, too. but- i am hopeful for next year... and we've learned a lot!

  4. I try to improve one thing with my gardening each year. This year I was going to make sure that I staked my tomatoes. That never happened but I did do some succession planting which wasn't even on the list for this year! Next year it's going to be all about soil improvement because I finally had the experiment of having a bed in my front yard with perfect new soil and saw how much better everything did.

    I've been working at this gardening thing for years and years and still feel like I know next to nothing but nothing makes me happier than puttering around my garden at the end of a long day.