Saturday, July 18, 2009

Weekend Garden Review

Ah the weekend is here. Usually I am excited for the weekend as it is a break from work and allows me to putter around the yard and gardens. However, I was off for vacation last week and was able to enjoy this every day. Today and tomorrow are the last days before I have to return to work on Monday.

It rained overnight and into this morning. It is supposed to remain cloudy today with a chance of thunderstorms. I can’t really complain though as the weather for last week was absolutely beautiful mostly sunny, warm, very little humidity until Friday. After all that sun, the gardens were in need a good soaking.

It was drizzling softly this morning as I snapped the pictures below. I can’t believe how fast things are growing now with the added sun and warmer temperatures. It is as though the plants are trying to make up for the lost month of their growing season.

The Kentucky Wonder Pole Beans in the traditional garden are quickly spiraling up the trellis:

The Cucumbers are ready to take their first step upward too:

The Royal Burgundy Bush Beans are in bloom. It won't be long now before we are harvesting fresh beans. I can't wait.

All the tomato plants have some small tomatoes on them now.

Here are the Super Marzano tomato suckers in a new SWC planted last week. These are the two largest in the small pots from the Tomato News post on July 9th. There isn't much time for these to grow before the end of the season, but I think I will be able to harvest a few tomatoes from these plants as they are already budding.

The Roma tomato plants in the SWC that I was so concerned about last week seem to be doing ok. The leaves still have a little bit of yellow but none have progressed much further. The new leaves show no yellow yet. No leaves or branches have died. The plant is still growing, has a few tomatoes on it, looking healthy and producing new blooms.

My best guess is that they were getting too much water. The container wasn’t level as I found out when I drilled a second drainage hole extra water immediately drained out. Therefore, the water level may have been elevated on one side of the SWC leading to the aeration screen coming in contact with the water level in the chamber. This would definitely result in too much water wicking up into the soil and block air from getting to the roots. I am still going to keep a close watch on these plants for now, but I am pretty sure this solved the problem.

My little tiny Fast Break Melon that I posted on Monday has grown quite a bit in only a few days:

Another on one of the other two plants has joined her:

There may be more, but I didn't want to disturb the plants while they were wet to peek under the leaves. All three Fast Break Melon vines are covered in blooms, although most seemed to be male right now. The vines are beginning to sprawl across the garden.

As are the watermelons:

The watermelon plants in the middle are Crimson Sweet. The two on either side are Yellow Doll. The Crimson Sweet is showing it's first bloom:

You can also see the Zucchini and Yellow Straightneck Squash behind the watermelons in the picture above. They have grown quite a bit this week also. The large plants in the middle are Zucchini; the ones on either side are Yellow Straightneck Squash in two different stages of growth as they were planted about two weeks apart.

Below is another view. Yellow Straightneck Squash on the right, Zucchini in the middle, and the third Yellow Straightneck Squash is not visible behind the Zucchini:

A tiny Zucchini bud:

The Spinach in the SFG is pretty much a bust. I had a difficult time getting seeds to sprout early on. The ones that did sprout struggled for a while, and then bolted before we ate a single leaf. The smaller plants were seeded later on, but grew extremely slowly. I don't expect them to do well as warm temperatures are now here.

We have been eating lettuce all week from the SFG and it looks like we will have plenty for next week too:

The second round planted is romaine and it seems to be doing quite well so far:

I have started more lettuce seeds inside for fall planting:

It's difficult to believe that I am thinking fall just when it seems that summer has finally arrived and the garden has begun to grow. We have such a short growing period here in Maine. This year is even shorter with the wet and cool June we experienced.

I guess all I can do is take what I have learned this year and apply it to planning the garden next year.


  1. You're so lucky you still have lettuce. Mine bolted long ago, and I'm just now getting another section of garden freed up for planting more. your garden looks so green and fresh, while mine is wilting in triple digit temperatures right now.

  2. Everything looks so neat and well cared for. I love it! I'm looking so forward to having lettuce again.

  3. AG, The only reason I have lettuce and the garden looks so good is the temperatures have not been over 80 in the past two months :)

    Ribbit, just wait this week....things are going to start growing into each other. We are so behind here.

  4. Your garden is looking great and your watermelon is doing so well. Mine didn't even want to sprout. It finally did but now is just sitting there. Guess no watermelon for me this year :-( Enjoy one for me when they're ready!

  5. Everything is looking very good! That last picture of the romaine lettuce with the water droplets on it... perfect! We are getting too hot for traditional lettuces right now... so young swiss chard leaves are doing the task of greens until the late summer crop of lettuces are up and harvestable.