Thursday, July 14, 2011

Your Gardens Are Making Me Hungry!

Here it is July and the community gardens look great. I know there have been some concerns about how things are growing. Be sure to use some fish fertilizer or manure tea every couple of weeks to fertilize your garden. Its even been recommended to add some glacial rock dust to your gardens.

I took a walk around the gardens last night and wondered why people weren't harvesting their crops that are ready. Check out Desiree's radishes. I know she is away but make sure you check yours to see if they are ready. If they have bolted due to the summer heat (Ya, I know, where is it today?) try putting the radish flowers in your next salad. They are delicious and taste just like radishes.

These green onions can be cut to use in salads now too. You don't have to cut them all, just take what you need for tonight's dinner. They will continue to grow.

I am not sure who owns the allotment with the mint in it but its ready to use as well. Can I say mint tea? Just cut a few branches, wash lightly, put leaves in a teapot, pour boiling water over and let steep for fifteen minutes. It is absolutely delicious!

Just look at this beautiful lettuce. I know, I think I come to the garden hungry as this just has me wanting salad. How pretty! Cut a few leaves before it gets bitter. This is a cool season crop and needs to be eaten soon.

Check out this iceberg lettuce. Can I say perfection? Obviously the rabbits are more interested in wild grass and haven't seen this garden. Seriously, I still haven't seen any bunnies.

Are wondering whats happening with all the rocks at the front of the garden? One of the board members is using old driveway aggregate to build an English rock garden. It will go across the whole front of the community garden. We have some starter plants being healed in to bed #47 and they will go in as we build the garden. If you know anyone taking up an existing driveway, let Sharon know as we would be more than happy to take the concrete off their hands. So far that is two driveways used up.What a cool way to recycle!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

July in the Ladner Community Garden

Its hard to believe this garden was just built and planted on the long weekend in May. Look how great it is growing! I cant wait to start getting some of the flower beds in so that we have lots of colour. We plan to have 120 feet of flowers all the way across the front of the garden. It will be a welcome site for the neighbours.

This is a shot of the food bank garden. I have just used manure tea on the garden. I am sure the plants are loving me right now.

Most of the vegetable seedlings are just starting to grow. With the wind exposure it set them back at first but I see new leaves on all the plants. The above photo was taken on May 30.

I was a bit worried about the bush beans we planted but its been a cold wet spring. Here they don't look too happy.

Finally summer has arrived and look how the beans have grown! Lets hope summer continues right in to October.

Adding the bark chips to the garden has made it look so tidy. It will help to keep the weeds down as we get busy in our gardens.

I visit each garden daily to see how they are growing. I am particularly interested in the tomatoes. In this region, we have a serious problem with tomato blight which is spread by our rainy climate. We decided to let gardeners grow them as its all about the learning experience. We learn from our successes and failures in the garden. There are some things that are hard to control such as the weather.
So take a good look at the photo above by clicking on it to enlarge. There are two tomato plants here. The one on the right is full of blight. The one on the left is doing fine. What I wondered is if the black pot that surrounds the healthy tomato has offered some kind of protection? Time will tell. If your tomatoes look black now, the fruit will come out with black spots on it.

Check out the West Coast Seeds trial garden. Mark has placed straw on the garden to try and reduce water evaporation. Aren't those squash plants just growing by leaps and bounds? I am so jealous!

The children's garden is coming along. The squash and pumpkin plants are happy in their new garden beds. One bed is full of Nasturtium seeds. Did you know Nasturtiums are edible? Wouldn't that make a pretty salad? You will see a few stumps in the back corner of the children's garden. They will be used for seating when a class comes to learn in the garden. By having seating it offers a place for the teacher to give instructions.
I look forward to our first harvest. It will be sooner than you think.