I've been wanting to post about the bounty I have been gathering from my tiny community garden plot, but was put off by 1. forgetting my camera every time I went, and 2. not being able to get good photos due to a. the backdrop of weeds in the plots that border mine (argh! they should just let me use their space!), and b. the awkward shape of my plot (sort of trapezoidal).
But I'm posting about it anyway.
For the second year in a row I planted one of my favorite flowers of all time: the sweet pea. And for the second year, my plants failed. I got a wall full of leaves and one flower. I grew these all the time as a kid, I don't know what I am doing wrong!Here are the delicious cherry tomatoes that are going crazy. This plant is huge! I had no idea tomatoes could get so tall. This is a sungold cherry tomato. I found out later it, as well as my eggplants, is a hybrid. I am going to try and find heirlooms next year, but as I only grow one or two plants, I prefer seedlings to seeds for these crops.
Roma tomatoes. Daddy-O bought this seedling for me for 49 cents!Mmmm, I am loving the ruby red swiss chard this year. I planted two rows, and just put down seeds for a third, hoping I will get more in the fall.In the above photo you can see, left to right, sweet peas, peppers and eggplant, chard, arugula, kale. I had great success with my lacinato kale, too. I just put down two more rows. At the end of the chard row is a lavender plant which never took off (so sad) and a rosemary. Also Kiddo's mini sunflower.
I also grew a lot of mesclun greens, arugula, basil, dill, lemon thyme, rosemary, cilantro and parsley.
One last view, from different angle, the tomatoes are far to the right. You might be able to see some of my cosmos and coreopsis. I am especially proud of my cosmos. Last year I mostly grew flowers for cutting, I saved the seeds from the orange cosmos, since I liked them the best.
Unfortunately, some creature has been eating the blossoms off the mini pumpkin plant we planted from the seeds we saved.
Things I learned about gardening this year:
Don't plant tomatoes so that one plant shades the other. Duh, duh, and duh again.
Cool rainy weather is not good for eggplants and peppers.
Cool rainy weather is great for swiss chard, kale and salad greens.
I should grow salad greens only on my
balcony fire escape for ease of eating and to free up space.
I'm really not that into lilies. If they don't perform well next year. I'm giving them away.
If my tulips survive the wet soggy summer (they like to stay dry in summer), I will transplant my lemon thyme over them, since that needs little water in the summer. This will also free up valuable space.
Plants will do well much closer together than the spacing guidelines on seed packets.
Cilantro bolts very quickly.
No need to pull out an entire chard or kale plant at a time, just cut the leaves needed... the plant will keep producing!
Arugula will grow in the shade of the tomato plant.