Sunday, July 31, 2016

Fruit, leaf, flower, root

This year marks the 10th garden we have planted at our house.  We have been working on crop rotation both within a growing season and from year to year.  A lot of our crops this year really seem to be showing the benefits.

Glacier Early Tomato
Thanks to those walls of water I've had tomatoes from a few select plants since mid July.  This bed of tomatoes is my earliest and best looking.  Last year we grew green beans and herbs in this spot.

Rainbow Swiss Chard
Mmmm chard so yummy, so pretty, and so much easier to grow than spinach.  Notice the bird netting?  That's a whole other blog post.  Notice the co planting with green beans?  These are great companions.  Last year we grew carrots in this bed.

Windsor Fava Beans

Coriander aka Cilantro

This is an early photo of my Favas from about 3 weeks ago and they are starting to flower now.  Last year in that bed we grew Zucchini.  I'm not sure what group you actually account for coriander in given that its a leafy herb that flowers.  I count it as a flower because we eat in in all life cycles including the dried pod stage.  Last year in that bed we grew peppers.


Carrots, mixed varieties
Last but probably our most eaten vegetable, the humble carrot.  These are planted along side Beets this year and both seem pretty happy.  Last year in this bed we grew Lettuce.

We have been working on a 3 year rotation but if we had more space would probably go out to 4 years.  Anyhow, I think its paying off in terms of plant health and pest management.  

Tomorrow is already August so we had better soak up the summer while it lasts.


Winter, finally (and seriously)

I planned to start this blog last spring as my garden flew into action, but then got into the actual work of gardening and abandoned the task. However, today its winter, really winter. I'm wearing long underwear and sitting under a blanket and I'm still cold.
Today is the shortest day of the year so from here on in it gets better. I look forward to longer days, that's for sure. But I'll also tuck in and enjoy winter's freeze and snow, it does mean skiing after all. Maybe more importantly is the snow pack - without snow there isn't water for the West.
The end of the year and the solstice are a good time to think back on the last 365. I have no reason to complain and feel really lucky about the last year and really hopeful about the year to come.