We’ve been really busy here lately. It has been mostly a colder spring with night temps in the 40s- we had our heat still going at times until last week, and we even had a frost advisory for June 1st; but then this weekend we got a warmup – we were at 90 degrees yesterday!
The garden is mostly planted; I have a few things that are waiting to go in, but I am mostly just working on maintenance and weeding now. Seeds have been slow to start because we are really dry this year as well. That is somewhat of a nice change over the last few years but I have to make sure to water everything often, and I have seeds that I haven’t seen sprout yet, like my broccoli and some of my beans (I’m growing 6 kinds of beans this year – some are up but some have not sprouted, and some have not been planted yet).
Here are some pictures of the goings-on at our tiny farm:
Our apple trees are in blossom.
Here is a big bee visiting the apple blossoms.
A lone tulip. This came up randomly in the middle of our yard. I haven’t seen any tulips here in years, although my mom used to have a lot of them. I replanted it in a safer spot.
Here is the main garden. It is mostly in – I’m waiting for the corn to emerge and then I’ll put some more beans in to grow up the corn.
Here are the two tomato beds, with some marigolds planted among them. I have 18 tomato plants this year, 7 different kinds.
Here you can see my Crosnes are coming up – they look a bit like mint; I had to look them up online to verify what the plants look like, but there are 5 or 6 of them that have emerged.
Here are some sunchokes coming up as well.
Here is the back / chicken garden (I stole it from the chickens last year). It gets less sun so I planted things that can take a lot of shade toward the back, like lettuce and herbs.
Here is my back of the house garden. I put some watermelon, cantaloupe, and summer squash in here. This bed gets a lot of sun, and is sandier soil – supposed to be really good for melons, so I figured I would try them here this year. The bags have potatoes. At the far end of the garden is my strawberry/mint patch.
Here is a close up of the strawberry patch. You can see the mint intermixed. I use mint a lot, and the strawberries are getting lots of flowers. Hopefully I’ll get a lot of berries this year.
The chicks are growing up! I put them in with the adults a couple weeks ago, so they could see each other but were separated; they are now mixed with the adults and everyone seems to be getting along well.
Here is Nova enjoying the sunshine and some petting.
Here is Atat out in the sunshine. I’m not sure where Downey (our other dog) was when we were taking pictures, but he has been enjoying the sunshine too.
This summer is shaping up to be a nice one so far.
There has been a lot going on this August, and the garden is still growing well. We have tomatoes but none are ripe yet. We have had an overabundance of cucumbers and starting to have a ton of summer squash. Here are some cool pictures of our farm from this past month:
My onion crop! We got 103 yellow onions. I also planted some red onions late in the season, I am not sure if those will be ready this year or if we’ll have to wait till spring. This is my second time growing onions from sets, and the best harvest I’ve had. Last year the chickens kept dust bathing in the onion patch – this year the onions were not where the chickens could go.
I got a good garlic harvest too – I think there were a couple that didn’t grow though; I planted around 40 cloves from last year’s harvest, which grew into 36 bulbs, and these were mostly pretty large sized. I am saving a couple of bulbs for replanting, and also ordered some more garlic – a couple of Porcelain strains to try. Those have really large cloves – like 4-6 per bulb on average, so that will be exciting. I ordered my bulbs from Filaree farm. (filareefarm.com)
My tomato and squash jungle. I will be cutting the tomatoes back soon to let things ripen up. They don’t get a lot of sun in this spot except in the afternoon, so I think that is holding them back a bit – these were all early (60-65 day) strains, but they are just sitting green currently. Some large tomatoes though!
Here is another view of the squash and tomato bed. You can tell the sunnier part of the garden (toward the cars) since the plants are a bit taller there.
Here you can see the big beefsteak tomatoes sitting on the plant, in the center of this photo.
Sunflowers at the back of the house.
Here is our tallest sunflower, I’m guessing this one is about 10 feet or so – it towers at least 4 feet over my head.
A better view of the tallest sunflower plant. This is a rogue that grew in the middle of my garden. Sometimes those seem to grow better than the ones I actually planted. Although I have a few very tiny ones that grew from the birds dropping seed in my yard. Those are cute and about a foot tall.
A bee hanging out on a sunflower. We have a lot of native bees here – I used to want to get hives for honey, but I’ve been rethinking it the last year or so – I’ve been trying to do more to support the native bee species we have around here.
Here are three sunflowers, each with a bee. The bees seem to really like to hang out on these. I think they get a “sunflower coma” – like a baby would get a “milk coma” if that makes sense – like their bellies are full and they are tired so they take naps on the flowers.
Here are two bees napping on a coneflower. The bees are cute.
We’ve been up to a lot this last month – it still just keeps raining way too much, so everything tends to be sopping wet. Some veggies are finally starting to produce/ripen. I’m hoping the rains don’t hurt the harvest – I’m worried about tomatoes splitting. Oh, and we’ve also already had frost warnings – some areas near me actually had frost a week or so ago, but we lucked out at the house and didn’t get any frost. Here are some pics from the last few weeks:
The garden mid-August. You can see the soaked muddy ground here.
Another pic from mid august.
We found a visitor in the garden. He was huge! I wish the picture had turned out less fuzzy.
Here are the chickens coming to see if we brought them any treats.
A bubble – my son got a bubble wand from a birthday party, and we took some photos.
Here is about half of the potato harvest. We harvested the last 4 (out of 8 or 9) bags. We really didn’t get a lot – I will try a different method next year (and keep the plants away from the chickens) – the food bags didn’t work as well as I’d hoped. I think we planted more seed potatoes, weight-wise, than we harvested.
A fuzzy picture of our raspberries. I put them in a couple years back, and finally got a decent crop, BUT they don’t taste like raspberries. One berry had a hint of raspberry flavor. I’ve tried letting them ripen more but those just rotted, so it’s not that they’re not ripe enough. I’ll have to research this variety more. They are good, just not what I want them to taste like.
Our first ripened tomatoes of the season, on one of the cherry tomato plants.
Early Girl tomatoes – these are the next to ripen – this pic is from a few days ago but I noticed one is a little pink today.
Black Krim tomatoes. These will get red on the bottom when ripe. They keep this nice dark color on top.
Blue beauty tomatoes. They are more of a purple tomato when ripe.
Some beautiful Zinnias.
A question mark made from potatoes – my husband set these up, using this silly shaped one we got.
A large pumpkin waiting to ripen. It’s supposed to be an 8″ pie pumpkin variety, but this one is a bit larger than that.
Here is a smaller pumpkin.
We sold some hens today – our 3 year olds and a two-year old. We’re trying to bring our food bill down for the coming winter. Here the ladies are waiting for their ride this morning. We now have 22 chickens (20 hens and 2 roosters). And 3 ducks.
I took this really nice picture tonight – The sunflowers have some really nice flame colors.
Thanks for checking out our late summer pictures. Hopefully this rain will let up a bit and we’ll have a nice fall harvest.