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A Walk in the Garden

July 1, 2015

I keep meaning to write more, and never have enough time.

I especially would like to write more because of the Urban Gardening contest I’m in, because I need your votes. So, if you’re on facebook, please go like these three pictures:

May 19th

June 2nd

June 16th

And now let’s go on a walk through my gardens… (Actually, we’ll have to do a little time-travel to the past, too, because these pictures aren’t that new any more… I meant to post them before I went to Hamburg, and even then they were a few days old, so that would make it about two weeks now… but if I wait until I take newer pictures, I will never post this.)

A short trip over to the park, to the community garden:

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I always find it fascinating to see so many different gardening styles in so small a space, from neat rows to everything mixed together, from perfectly maintained to thriving weeds.

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I’m still the only one to use lawn clippings to mulch with. The last time the lawn in the park was mowed, the workers left the clippings right in front of the community garden – did they know I’d be able to use them?

In the left bed, from back to front: snow peas, sweet corn, bush beans, cabbage, zucchini, lettuce, celeriac and dill (for the most part, there’s no real system to that, other than “where do I happen to have enough free space?”)

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During the three days before leaving for Hamburg, I harvested (and ate) over 800 g of snow peas.

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The first yellow zucchini, harvested with 650 g. There have been several more that size since then.

So viel Salat... ich habe das Gefühl, mir wachsen bald zwei Hasenohren, so viel esse ich davon zur Zeit.

I’m eating so much lettuce right now, I expect I’ll grow a pair of rabbit ears soon.

In the right bed, in no particular order: parsnips, lettuce, red beets, chard, radishes, cabbage, red cabbage, savoy cabbage, brokkoli, cauliflower, leeks, fennel, celery, arugula… there should be parsley as well, but it refused to germinate, and the carrots… well, I still don’t know if they’re just not germinating well, or if the slugs eat them while they’re still tiny. But I’m not giving up yet. I was planning to re-sow them right after coming home from Hamburg, but I’ve been home for a week now and still haven’t had time.

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My first ever cauliflower! (Apart from early balcony garden experiments, which had about 3 cm in diameter…)

Let’s go back home…

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Somebody is giving me competition for the greenest balcony this year! (But on the whole, our building isn’t very green…)

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Other people might have a balcony that’s just as green as mine, but I also use my windowsills (which they don’t.)

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The balcony has taken its final shape at last. The tomatoes are standing where they’re supposed to remain for the rest of the year, all the trellises have been built and I’ve repeatedly had to stop the beans from trying to visit the upstairs neighbours. All I ever get from them is cigarette butts (which I find in my railing planters), they certainly won’t get any of my beans in return!

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I allowed myself to buy a few more flowers than usual this year, so there are a few fan-flowers among the variegated sweet potatoes and trailing tomatoes at the window right over the entrance to the building.

sDSC04197Into the building and right out on the balcony again…

sDSC04199The yellow snow peas didn’t like the hot weather, and mildew is taking over. I try to keep it in check with baking powder, but I probably don’t do that often/regularly enough.

Since my melons never grew very well, this year I decided to put a red kuri squash in one of the melon pots. In just one week, it grew about one metre… this feels quite threatening. If I stop posting altogether, I’ve probably been strangled by squash vines…

sDSC04201Even though the yellow snow peas always seem to get mildewy very early, I like them too, and since I ran out of seeds this year, I marked the nicest, biggest pods so I don’t accidentally eat them instead of letting the seeds ripen.

sDSC04202The tomatoes always start out along the back wall, where they get more sun while they’re small. As soon as they’re higher than the railing, they have to move to the front, where the lower leaves will be in deep shade – by now, most of those leaves have yellowed and died.

That’s also the reason why the eggplants stand on these wooden boxes – so they’ll be out of the shadow of the railing.

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In the railing planters, there are a tons of herbs, salad greens, chard, sweet potatoes, and a couple of flowers.

sDSC04204My table and chair, finally no longer squeezed in between bell peppers and eggplants.

sDSC04205To the right of my table, there are the peppers and a pot of beans I sowed indoors a little earlier than the others, and which would now like to expand my green imperium to the next storey. At the back wall, there are the cucumbers and a second pot with beans (which I sowed later, and directly on the balcony, which is why they’re a lot smaller.)

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In the corner, the pot tower with strawberries, mint and a few more flowers. On the wall, the strawberry bag and a few pots with a climbing strawberry and a trailing strawberry, which I wanted to give a try this year.

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The second bean pot. There are also a few morning glories and a shoot that I think belongs to a yam which I always forget about in autumn, and which always surprises me in spring.

sDSC04208Normally, my Abutilons and passionflowers would spend the summer out on this windowsill, but then I liked these planters (that I meant to move to the other windows) so much that I decided to keep them there. This one has “ornamental” sweet potatoes (still gave me a decent harvest last year), “lucky clover”, volcanic sorrel, and a mashua plant that also seems to be thinking about world domination. If the sun had been shining when I took the picture, the sorrel would have opened its pretty flowers, too.

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In the other one, more ornamental sweet potatoes, blue rock bindweed and different sorrels. These also would have looked nicer on a sunny day… but if I always waited for perfect conditions to take pictures, I would never get anything done at all, and I’m slow enough as it is…

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 3, 2015 16:48

    I’m impressed! Photos admired and liked on Facebook – hope you win!

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  1. A Walk in the Garden | Letters & Leaves | WORLD ORGANIC NEWS

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