So I’ve recently joined the Garden Share Collective and this is my first post.
The Garden Share Collective is a group of bloggers who share their vegetable patches, container gardens and the herbs they grow on their window sills. Creating a monthly community to navigate through any garden troubles and to rival in the success of a good harvest we will nurture any beginner gardener to flourish. Each month we set ourselves a few tasks to complete by the next month, this gives us a little push to getting closer to picking and harvesting. The long-term goal of the Garden Share Collective is to get more and more people gardening and growing clean food organically and sustainably.
I actually love this idea, it’s kind of like a diary of sorts of what is happening in the garden. It’s a little different to the rest of my style but here we go.
How’s it all looking
You’ll hear me bitch about how much I hate gardening in summer in Queensland, but I guess things could be worse.
Let’s start with the Aquaponics – those fish are going nuts! We actually need to attach an additional grow bed to the the system as the plants aren’t converting the ammonia fast enough. That’s a project that we need to do research on first, but the verdict seems to be pointing to an additional IBC and splitting the qty of fish in half. We started with 40 fish and we’ve only had 2 fatalities over winter so there are a lot of fish in there.
The celery needs ‘containing’ (or pulling out), I am still not sure why I planted so much as we don’t eat a great deal and the lettuce needs replacing soon as a fair percentage is going to seed.
New garden beds
As we’ve signed another 12 month lease in this rental property we figured we may as well make use of the ‘garden beds’ that are just there for show. We’ve planted out with melons, 4 different varieties so they should be lush and overgrown by the end of summer (we hope). We’ve got the champaign water melon, regular water melon, honeydew, rockmelon, a globe watermelon, butternut pumpkins and zucchinis happening here. We’ve also moved one of the pineapples out of a pot and scattered some left over wedding favour herbs around. It’s a bit of a mess, but hoping the melons will just take over.
The raised garden beds
The kale that is standing like small trees in the last couple of days has just suffered an infestation of caterpillars, I tried to control it but I think it’s too late so it’s possible we will be retiring those guys soon.
We’ve planted some Timmy Toe cherry tomatoes, looking forward to seeing how much space they take up and what kind of yield they produce. We’ve harvested a total of 3 corn cobs from the random seeds that decided to pop up, not fully formed which was expected considering not many plants popped up. Tiny cobs, but delicious.
The San Marzano tomatoes are doing well. We’ve been picking from the plant in the pot, the one in the raised bed is starting to put on fruit.
The second raised bed has the beans that look amazing but aren’t really doing much. It looks like they have some form of rust from all the rain and humidity, so I think it’s time to pull them out. I never seem to get great abundance with beans no matter how I try.
Due to my lack of pollinators, I’ve decided to start filling the beds with flowers, so we’ve got some snap dragons, nasturtiums, marigolds and cosmos scattered through the beds. I’ve also got a sunflower that has popped up from a seed.
The one thing doing really well here is the eggplant, two different varieties here – regular and lebanese. The redskin capsicum is just holding on, and the little diggers chocolate capsicum is doing OK. Again I’ve thrown in herbs left over as wedding favours in and around the place.
The rest of the plants in pots are growing pretty well.
The sunflowers are done, I am actually not sure what to do with them, I’d love to get the seeds out and add to salads etc, but not sure how to go about it.
I’ve also pulled out all the onions from the pots, they aren’t huge, but they are big enough and I am pretty happy with the harvest – it’s my first real onion harvest.
What’s up next
I am just starting to do some seed raising to replace all the lettuce that is going to seed. I’ll throw in some new kale now as well as I think the caterpillars have won that fight.
I’ll also start planning what I am going to grow for autumn and where to put everything.
A sum up:
What I have growing
I am probably going to miss a few things…
- Kale (Curly & Tuscan)
- Swiss Chard
- Sugarloaf Cabbage
- Tomatoes (San Marzano, Yellow Pear, Timmy Toe, Tigarella)
- Eggplant (Regular, Lebanese)
- Lettuce (cos, butterhead, mignonette)
- Herbs (Sage, Sweet Basil, Thai Basil, Lemon Basil, Thyme, Lemon Thyme, Rosemary, Parsley, Mint, Coriander, rosemary, vietnamese mint)
- Sweet Potatoes
- Red Onions, Spring Onions, Shallots, Leek
- Lemon Grass
- Capsicum (Small yellow, Californian Wonder, Redskin, Chocolate, Patio)
- Melons (watermelon yellow, watermelon regular, watermelon round, honeydew, rockmelon)
- Butternut pumpkin
- Blueberries, cumquat, lemons, pineapple, avocado, pomegranate, fig, coffee beans, lime.
How is your garden going this summer?