Saturday, June 23, 2012

Eating Vegetables from the Garden! (2012 Garden Update #5)

There's plenty of Grilled Zucchini on the menu at my house!

Last time I shared an update about my garden I was excited about baby vegetables starting to appear, and now a few weeks later I'm happily using vegetables and herbs from the garden and looking forward to more to come.  The photo above shows what happens when you don't keep up on picking the zucchini.  Most of these are about the size I like, but the two giant 8-Ball Zucchini in the back are going to be grated up and turned into something like Savory Whole What Zucchini Muffins with Green Chilis and Cheese!

For the last two years I battled tomato blight in the boxes along my new deck, so this year I planted squash and cucumbers in those spots and moved the tomatoes back into the main garden.  I actually kind of like the look of the squash plants lining the deck, and I think it's helping me keep them picked!

The zucchini are in full production mode, as well as the yellow straightneck squash you see here.

The last squash plant I put in was this scallop squash, so it's barely starting to get some baby squash, but I'm excited for these.  I love this type of squash for Marinated Summer Squash and Chickpea Salad with Lemon, Herbs, and Parmesan.

The cucumbers are not quite as attractive or happy growing along the deck, but I'm getting a good supply of cucumbers from them. 

In the garden the first bed has Red Russian Kale (which is thriving), as well as some radishes, a bush-type winter squash, and some tomatoes in the back.  (Please ignore all weeds!)

I don't always have great luck growing dill, so when two volunteers came up near this bed I decided to let them grow here!

The next bed has swiss chard in the middle, with red bell peppers on one side, Poblano peppers on the other side, and tomatoes in the back.

For the last couple of years I've had to put netting over the chard plants to keep the birds from eating them, but this year they don't seem quite so bad.  The net is kind of a pain, so I'm keeping an eye on it so far, and letting the birds have a few nibbles.

I am excited to see one Poblano pepper making an appearance!

All my tomatoes have lots of fruit.  These are my beloved Green Zebra tomatoes!

I was thrilled to find San Marzano tomato plants this year.  It's my first year growing these Italian tomatoes which are supposed to be so flavorful for sauce and Slow Roasted Tomatoes, and the plants are loaded with tomatoes.

I also found Lemon Boy tomatoes, which are a very flavorful yellow tomato that's another one of my favorites, and they seem to be doing well.  (Not pictured are Celebrity Tomatoes, Better Boy Tomatoes, and Brandywine Tomatoes, all of which are thriving.)

The third bed has curly green kale, which doesn't seem to be growing as fast as the Red Russian Kale.  There are more tomatoes in the back (which you can't see) and four Ichiban Eggplant along the side.  I love these for making Spicy Grilled Eggplant!

The fourth bed has French green beans, with three tomato plants in the back.  As you can see, I have a lot of green beans in my future.

In the herb beds, I've got parsley, flat parsley, mint, rosemary, dill, Greek oregano, Marjoram, thyme, tarragon, and chives which I'm using often, and I've already picked two big salad spinners full of basil from the two basil plants that I planted from seedlings.

I usually plant a couple of basil plants and then fill in with seeds, but the basil seeds don't come up nearly as well with the drip sprinklers as they did when I had overhead sprinklers, so in the future I will probably buy a few more basil plants.  (The two little ones on the far right inside the pipes are Thai Basil, which I am trying to nurture along although they're not too happy there!)


So that's what's happening in the garden at Chez Kalyn.  If you have a garden at your house, let us know in the comments about what vegetables you've been eating from the garden!  (You can see all my Garden Updates since 2006 or the 2012 Garden Updates if you'd like to find out more about my garden.)
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22 comments:

Pat Machin said...

I'm in full agreement with encouraging 'volunteers'.

Fascinating to see gardens in different places!

Erika Kerekes said...

My garden is doing well too, although I must have planted later than you. I'm along the coast in southern California, so it's been full-on June Gloom here for the past month, which slows down the growth too. I've picked a few zucchini, and all my tomatoes have fruit, though not as much as yours. Chard, jalapenos, basil, green beans, arugula, lettuce, potatoes, all doing well. By the way, that volunteer you pointed out - isn't it fennel, rather than dill?

glutenfreehappytummy.com said...

oh my gosh! lucky you! those veggies are gorgeous!!!!

Merisi said...

Such an astonishing variety in your garden, and everything looks to be thriving!

I have but a lonely pot with basil on my windowsill.

Kalyn said...

Oh my, I had fennel growing along the fence there two years ago so now I'm wondering if it might be fennel too. I guess I will find out, won't I?

Stephanie said...

When I start growing my herb garden, I'll be sure to ask for you help. Your garden looks wonderful!

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

Love your beds and everything looks to healthy. The beds remind me of square foot gardening. We usually have tomato blight every year too. We planted 2 Cherokee Purples are are hopeful....we'll see. Usually something goes wrong and we end up buying tomatoes at the farmer's market. Other than that, it's herbs for us and no vegetables.
Sam

Kalyn said...

Stephanie, most herbs are perennials, and they're pretty easy to grow!

Sam I love having fresh vegetables. I've been wanting to try Cherokee Purples, but I never see them for sale here. I'm keeping my fingers crossed on the tomato blight; so far the tomatoes seem happy where they are this year. I guess rotating is more important than I thought!

katrina hall said...

Oh, what beautiful gardens - and vegetables! I'm truly in awe, Kalyn.

Jane said...

Your garden is gorgeous! Some of my plants are coming up, but living at a super high elevation, our growing season is so short, so we are still dealing with almost freezing temps at night! However, my indoor tomatoes have been doing great! :) I love gardening though, even with the challenges, I'll take it!

Jane
http://thehealthybeehive.com

Jenny B said...

Wow, I am jealous of your squash! I have only been able to harvest one so far this season. I have just had a lot of radishes and lettuce so far. I can't wait for my tomatoes to ripen.

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

It's very inspiring to see your garden in progress. It looks great. My fledgling garden is having mixed results - my Swiss Chard is looking poorly, but my Kale is thriving too.

Kalyn said...

Jenny, I'm eagerly awaiting the tomatoes too! Tomato sandwiches are one of the best things about summer!

TW, wish I knew why some plants thrive and others just limp along under the same conditions. It's a gardening mystery.

Christine said...

Love your garden, Kalyn. I'm always so jealous when I see all your tomato plants! And San Marzanos? Where did you find those? I'd heat my greenhouse to be able to grow a few!
Right now I'm harvesting and drying Walla Walla onions, China Rose hard neck garlic, so much kale that I can't devise new ways to cook it fast enough, sugar snap peas, potatoes, and cilantro. We had some unseasonably dry, sunny weather which gave the zucchini a good start but it will be weeks yet before harvest. Volunteer cherry tomatoes are coming up in the greenhouse. Happy Sunday to you!

Kalyn said...

Christine I just stumbled on the San Marzanos at the garden center. First time I have seen the plants for sale here. I'd love to have Walla Walla onions and sugar snap peas. And cilantro doesn't grow at all here; just goes to seed right away.

Louise said...

I always love your garden updates. We just harvested 16 heads of garlic. We're drying and storing it now for the season. I'm still picking swiss chard, kale and romaine lettuce. The peas, beets, spinach, green leaf lettuce have gone by. Pole beans are showing up along with summer squash and cukes. I can't wait for the tomatoes, Anaheim peppers and Tomatillos. I love your pictures and updates. Keep them coming.

Kalyn said...

Louise, it sounds like your garden is pretty amazing!

Sheryl said...

This was my first time planting in a box garden... and it is an understatement to say that we planted too much! Right now, I'm getting nice cucumbers and zucchini... We are looking forward to red peppers, carrots, and cherry tomatoes. Wish us luck! Thanks for the great recipe suggestions, Kalyn!

Nate @ House of Annie said...

Your garden makes me happy happy happy. Oh the things you can cook with such produce!

Kalyn said...

Sheryl, my pleasure. I always plant far too much, but the neighbors enjoy it!

Nate, me too! I am really loving the kale so far.

BusyWorkingMama said...

Wow! Beautiful! I don't have nearly enough sun but am attempting a raised bed this year. I've gotten a ton of kale and zucchini and tomatoes.

Kalyn said...

You must be doing something right if you have those veggies without too much sun!

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