Saturday, May 30, 2009

Cucumber Plant

The cucumber is on the side of the house on the corner and is growing well.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Cucumber plants

One of our friends gave us a cucumber plant already potted and starting to produce flowers.
That was a few days ago and I still haven't gotten around to moving it to a good location to produce well. I'm thinking of putting it by the sunflowers and bean plant, possibly giving it a structure to climb as well. That would have to do since the melon/squash plant is getting way too big for what I had in mind. I only hope that I get some decent cucumbers off of it.

Pictures soon to come. I also need to put up some pics of the other plants that have already borne fruit.

Monday, May 25, 2009


It has to be one of the oddest sensations I've had. It's both tasty and prickly. The best way I have found to describe it is a cross between watermelon and cucumber, very light and refreshing. I haven't planted it this year but had a good crop of it some years back. I wasn't very worried about the water used at the time since I didn't really have to pay for it but I used a lot. That's also the year of the super abundant carrots and the flowering aloe.
The flowers are also edible and my wife decided to freeze them in ice cubes for a party she was having. They looked pretty until the ice melted and there were flowers floating in glasses of water here and there.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Broccoli Indoors

I have harvested the seeds from my bolted broccoli plant and planted some of the seeds in various pots around the office where I work. I don't think some of the places will be very conducive to actually having plants but you never know until you try. The majority of seeds have already sprouted and seem to be healthy. A good number of them are in nice sunny locations and have a good chance of becoming edible in the future as long as no one gets upset that there's broccoli in the office plant containers.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I was just asked about what to do with Gardenias in this area (Dallas / Fort Worth, Texas for those of you who don't know). He bought some plants from Lowe's. The tag and the Lowe's site said conflicting things as can happen when a plant is well suited for a wide variety of climates.
For the metroplex it's best to find a nice shady place to put them. While afternoon and evening shade are preferred, a little sun here and there won't leave you disappointed as long as it's kept cool. The flowers are the main reason for this as they will tend to wilt in the heat and fall off.
Also make sure there is good drainage and, for those of you who are mainly interested in the flowers, fertilize it. It eats a lot.


I always figured that after you ate a cabbage all that was left to do was to chunk the remains and go get another one.
Well, after eating the first cabbage out of our garden we decided to replant the base and see what happens. Lo and behold we got more cabbage leaves! It's a plant that keeps on giving. From the base of the old leaves, new leaves started to appear and shoot forth new cabbage goodness. I don't know how long this will go on but I'll keep you informed of it's progress.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Garden Update

It's been a while since I last posted an update of my garden.
I'll start in the front.
The bed along the driveway is growing well all except for the tomato plants. We started with small plants and they haven't taken well where we put them probably becuase the other plants are a little close and hogging the space. For instance the broccoli is really bushy and making seeds so I can have more plants next season.
The plants near the walkway are doing pretty good. My pepper plant from last year already has peppers on it and the new plants are growing fine but no flowers as of yet. Yhe cabbage plant that we harvested and replanted has a lot of new leaves on it again and we could probably make a nice dish of cole slaw in about a week.
The lemon thyme and oregano are both taking off again this spring and will need to be cut back and thinned under the thyme at least to get the old dead stuff out.
As my wife was pointing out earlier today, all of our lavender survived last winter and continues to grow and flower. We have cotton lavender and it was first to flower this year.
Around the side of the house we have the bean plant which has reached over seven feet high and growing, the key limes which I still need to separate into their own pots, the sunflowers which are all flowering, some of which are making flowers along the stem, and various other plants in pots, the least of which is not the beets which are good for the prostate.
In back you come first to the assorted herbs in small pots, not doing so well, which I will probably put in a planter or raised bed next time in the same location. Then the kaffir, or kiefer, lime tree, yes it's still growing and now has six leaves but still not very tall/
After these comes the main back yard beginning with the 4x4 boxes. Our strawberries are producing several berries every couple of days and so far we have beaten the birds to them. the onion and garlic patch behind it is doing well as far as I can tell but it's the first time I've tried it. Just behind both of these is some lettuce and carrots and other things I didn't bother labeling so all I know is that I can eat it.
The shade garden in the back looks very healthy. The elephant ear plants are getting big as well as the St John's wart and monk's cap. There's also some thyme back there and some other shade ground cover.
The melon/squash patch is finding it's way into the yard several feet and will soon block off any need to mow that area, no dear I didn't plan it that way, not entirely.
The fig tree has a boat load of figs on it even if the early figs all fell off again. The grapevine planted by the shed isn't growing a lot but it's holding in there.
And of course my lemon tree is doing great! I don't know if it will get any taller in the pot it's in and am really leaning toward planting it in the ground this month.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Ice Gardening

Working in the garden at around 4:00 in the afternoon in the middle of July isn't what most people have in mind. It's hot and we're all too used to our air conditioners blasting 60 degree air at us. If however that is the only time of day you have for gardening, you either suck it up or you don't garden. If you do garden, one of the best things to have on hand is a nice cold glass of ice water.

I say,"Don't be stingy!" Your plants want some too. I know, don't water between bla bla bla.... But who says they want the water. What they really want is a bug hunk of ICE. That's right, they wish it was in the 60's too. No room temperature water for them, and the boiling stuff that comes out of the hose is murder. You might as well uproot them and bake them in a oven.

To get the best results, use a block of ice not crushed or cubed. The block will stay cold longer and keep the ground moist and cool for the thirsty plants for at least an hour. Combine this with mulch and your plants will love you.

Friday, May 8, 2009


We planted sunflowers a month or so ago and WOW they actually grew. I wasn't sure since we planted them in the grass by the house. No tilling, no feeding, but lots of watering.

They've grown and are budding.
It's a little bigger than this now since this picture is about a week old.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Lemon Tree update

My lemon tree still hasn't produced any flowers, but it's shooting off new leaves by the handfull.
I expect it to grow another foot or two this year and possibly be ready to plant in the ground. I'll have to ask my neighbor if it's ok to plant it between the driveways. It would be a perfect place to plant it. I would just have to remember to water it every day and protect it during the winter so it doesn't die.... :(
One day my tree will look like this. (Hopefully)

I'm really good at killing plants. I just don't water them for years and by the time I look at them again they're pretty much gonners. Except for the aloe, it hung on for years and I finally started to water it again. I don't really want it I just feel sorry for the poor thing.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Key Lime Sprouts

I finally realized afte talking to a friend that I didn't have a single picture of my little key lime sprouts (I count eleven of them in the picture). Some of them need transplanting, well all of them really in the next week or so. They really are doing quite well for what I expected to come up.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Bean Plant (Lazy Housewife)

No, I'm not calling my wife lazy. She works very hard at quite a lot of things. That's just the variety of bean that's being grown.

I took some of the thinner bamboo pieces we procured for our, ok my, fence project and tied the top with honeysuckle vine, no need to waste any storebought twine or string. Then I unwraped the bean plants from eachother and wrapped it around the bamboo.

It has grown nearly to the top since this picture but it is dark out and I don't want to leave the chair. There are now many flowers on it which I will of course have to take more pictures of and post.

Saturday, May 2, 2009


I haven't been able to do a lot of photography outside in the garden since it's been raining a lot, at least when I've been home. I did get to go out and make a teepee for my bean plant quickly between raindrops. It really needed since it was trying to make one out of itself, actually about 7 plants in a little pot, fertilizer is a must here.
Pictures to come soon and hopefully pictures of veggies and produce!