Geesh, you’d think once school let out and summer began that things would slow down, but on the contrary for me. I’ve been very busy chasing my tail and as it appears, chasing my tomatoes. And my cucumbers. And my green beans. If I didn’t know any better, I would think my garden is on steroids.
I’ve been growing a garden for four years and I’ve never had such high, huge plants. As I’ve been wracking my brain, trying to figure out the reason / fortune, it all comes down to the larger and deeper beds, and those worm castings I incorporated in the soil before I planted. This certainly proves that everything I have been reading about worm castings is correct; the best natural, organic fertilizer you can buy. My tomato plants are almost taller than me (well, some are), and my cucumbers are growing over the trellises. And talk about creeping thyme — that stuff is creeping, creeping, creeping so much so, that it’s going to creep all the way over to the coop if I’m not careful. I’ve been cutting that back every couple of days or so.
I’m harvesting cucumbers and green beans twice a day, and I’ll be doing the same thing once the tomatoes ripen. At first when I planted the garden this past spring, I was very diligent about weeding, but now I can’t even get in between the plants to weed. Ok, ok, you get the picture, but with all this hugeness going on, I still abide by a few gardening tips that I also believe have had positive effect:
Pick ’em early is the golden rule. Heading out to the garden and picking the ripe and ready first thing during the cooler, morning hours is a guarantee that the fruits of your labor stay crisp and store longer. If harvested during the day, they become limp and wilt quickly, having evaporated a lot of their moisture and having absorbed that midday heat. And too, will lose a lot of flavor. If early mornings aren’t your thing, then wait to harvest until early evening when the heat of the sun has tapered off.
Weed whack. And when I say that, I don’t mean with one of those power things, but by pulling out the weeds with their roots, by hand. Of the plants that I can weed around, I do. Weeds zap a lot of the water intended for the plants, so if you can stay on top of your weeding, then that is a huge plus.
Water early mooring and / or late evening. Another golden rule, as this nourishment will carry your plants through the heat of the day, and will revitalize them at the end of the day. With this oppressive heat that we’ve been having lately, I’ve been watering my garden twice a day. A good hearty dose in the morning, and a quick recap in the evening. Clearly, this seems to be working for my garden.
I apologize I haven’t written in a while. Though I have been busy keeping up with my garden, among other things, I feel we’re close enough that we can just pick up where we left off without skipping a beat. My sweet friends.
If you have a garden, I hope you find these tips helpful. Stay tuned for some delicious garden to table recipes, and more tips and tricks.