Tag: Gardening

Planting Garlic

I planted our garlic today — an assortment of varieties filling one of the raised beds.

I only added about an inch of mulch to the bed. The garlic I planted last year never formed heads — we had lots of green leaves, beautiful scapes that we harvested quickly … but no garlic bulbs! Evidently garlic cloves need exposure to cold temperatures in order to form bulbs. You can actually mulch them too well! Hopefully I’ve got enough mulch to suppress weeds and retain moisture but not so much mulch that the cloves are too toasty this winter.

Fall Seed Starting

I got the seeds started for our fall harvested vegetables. We bought these little seed starting trays on Amazon — a tray, a 12-cell insert, and a humidity dome with an adjustable vent. The kit came with plant markers … but it seemed silly to write something permanent on the marker. So I turned them into reusable markers by adding some of the blue tape you use for painting a room (because that’s what we’ve got & pen works OK on it). First I put three of the markers in a line on the tape.

Making plant labels reusable

A couple of quick slices with an Exacto knife, and I can change the label as needed.

Voila – reusable labels!

I started the normal fall veggies — broccoli, broccolini, chard, and lots of cabbages. But I also started a sweet tomato that’s meant to produce in 60 days and a watermelon that’s supposed to produce in just 75 days. That’ll be the end of September so maybe we’ll get some watermelon this year!

Seeds started!

Raised Bed Herb Planters

When we decided to use some old cinder blocks to build raised beds, the idea was to fill all of the blocks with dirt and use the spaces as bonus planting spaces for small plants like flowers and herbs. Functional and aesthetically pleasing. I never got far in that project — filled some blocks with dirt and lots of weeds. But no ring of herbs around the bed.

This year, I’m doing it! It’s a time consuming process to clear out the existing plant growth. I’m adding about two inches of rocks (we’ve got a lot of rock-covered beds that we want to de-rock), and filling up with soil. Anya started a bunch of herb plants, so she has been transplanting her seedlings into the blocks and adding some wood mulch (I expect these small blocks will warm up and dry out rather quickly otherwise).

Home Automation and Gardening

Something like 20 years ago, I tried to grow a plumeria flower in my apartment. I had a broad-spectrum light, plenty of heat, and plenty of humidity. But getting the light turned on and off at the right times wasn’t easy (especially if I was at work all day!).

This seems like a really good use for home automation — our home automation system tracks the sunrise and sunset times for our zip code. It’s possible to essentially cron “stuff” off of these times — e.g. get the birds ten minutes before sunset. I could easily track sunrise and sunset in Honolulu then have my light turn on at sunrise (or first light) and off at sunset (or last light). Voila — “sunlight” that runs for the proper duration every day.

2022 Seeds

We’ve saved seeds from the garden (and seeds from both ground cherries and hot peppers that we picked up at the farmers market) that will make up much of our garden this year. I purchased a bunch of flower seeds to expand the bee garden, and a few new vegetables. And I really hope to get asparagus established this year!

Seeds for Honeybees

Autumn Beauty Sunflower Seeds – XL Packet

Ballerina California Poppy Seed Mix – XL Packet

Calendula-Balls-Orange-Wildflower-Seeds

Ball’s Orange Calendula Seeds – XL Packet

Asclepias-tuberosa

Butterfly Weed Seeds – 1/4 Oz

California Giants Zinnia Seed Mix – 1/4 Lb

Globe Annual Candytuft Seeds – XL Packet

Fairy Bouquet Snapdragon Seed Mix – XL Packet

Chrysanthemum-maximum-dwarf

Dwarf Shasta Daisy Seeds – XL Packet

Swiss Giants Pansy Seed Mix – 1/4 Oz

Single-Mixed-China-Aster-Wildflower-Seeds

Single China Aster Seed Mix – XL Packet

Painted Daisy Seeds – XL Packet

Money Plant Seeds – XL Packet

Ice Plant Seed Mix – 1 Oz

McKana Giants Columbine Seed Mix – XL Packet

Gaillardia-pulchella

Indian Blanket Seeds – XL Packet

Imperial Rocket Larkspur Seed Mix – 1 Oz

Imperial Pincushion Flower Seed Mix – XL Packet

Iceland Poppy Seeds – 1 Oz

Sparky French Marigold Seed Mix – XL Packet

Asclepias-syriaca-01

Common Milkweed Seeds – 1 Oz

Seeds for Food
Sugar-Beet-Beet-Seeds

Sugar Beet Seeds

Anise-Herb-Seeds

Anise Seeds

Chioggia-Beet-01

Chioggia Beet Seeds

Easter-Egg-Radish-01

Easter Egg Radish Seeds

French-Breakfast-Radish-01

French Breakfast Radish

 

Sparkler-White-Tip-Radish-Seeds-01

Sparkler White Tip Radish

White-Icicle-Radish-01

White Icicle Radish Seeds

 

 

Hickory King Corn

Pencil Cob Corn
Triticale Winter Rye Dundale Pea
Hull-less Barley Burbank Hull-less Barley Stalks of oats stock image. Image of ripe, harvest ...

Oats

Wheat on farm field stock image. Image of agriculture ...

Wheat

German Extra Hardy Garlic

Chesnok Garlic

Music Garlic

Dutch Red Shallot

Dutch Red Shallot

 

Dilly Beans

We made dilly beans tonight.

Ingredients:

  • Fresh string beans
  • 1.25c vinegar
  • 1.25c water
  • 2T salt
  • Whole dill
  • Whatever spices — garlic cloves, peppercorns, hot pepper flakes, chipotle pepper,  cinnamon, maple syrup, mustard seeds

Method:

  • Clean beans — wash, trim stem end, remove string if there is one
  • Pack beans into wide-mouth canning jars
  • Add in a sprig or two of dill along with other spices
  • Put brine ingredients into a measuring cup & microwave until boiling, pour over beans.
  • Put on lid, allow to cool, then refrigerate