Well, I haven't been very good about sharing my garden updates regularly on here, but I was finally able to spend some time taking photos in our garden a couple weeks back. Spring and summer were very busy outside, as they should be! Since it gets so hot here, things start growing very quickly; you have to really stay on top of watering, pruning and checking for pests. I do share a lot more day to day photos of garden progress and garden projects on my Instagram account, if you'd like to follow along there!
So between my last garden update and this one, we were busy harvesting tomatoes, carrots, TONS of cucumbers, lots of yummy zucchini, watermelon, some peppers, a small corn harvest, beans, all basil, thyme, oregano, sage and of course all the herbs that I'm growing for my products.
Morning glories and passiflora vines on the garden entrance are finally exploding with life! I love how magical it feels every time I walk into the garden.
I planted 3 different varieties of pumpkins around our garden fence (I didn't have enough room in the garden for these big guys!) Unfortunately, a few days after I took these photos, I had to massively prune these and pull some of them out. They were getting infested with aphids, and the aphids were moving to crops inside our garden. I didn't want to risk losing everything! I also made a safe and natural insecticidal spray and sprinkled diatomaceous earth all over the plants. The aphids aren't completely gone, but they seem to be under control now! And now when I do see them, I immediately spray them with the hose or some more of the spray I made.
Tomato bushes getting out of control! They are all done fruiting, but are flowering again, and still very healthy; so I'm leaving them in to see if we can get another crop of tomatoes before the cold weather comes!
Garlic chives and yarrow (started from seed) getting bigger everyday!
My dahlias are still going strong. But in the photo below you see how sad my squash plants were getting. (I pulled them out the next day I think.) Now that bed has radish seeds planted in it!
Crazy basil gone to flower. Some of my basil plants I've kept trimming off the flowers so they keep producing, but this one I let go. The bees and other pollinators love it!
Another yarrow, this one flowering so pretty. I started this one from seed in early spring also.
My peppers did NOT do good this summer! They just weren't growing that well. BUT, they recently have all started exploding! It's not so hot anymore (it was over 100' everyday for a few weeks), and I also installed soaker hoses, so they're getting watered more evenly and seem to be really thriving now. The wonderful thing about this, is that we should keep getting peppers for the next couple months!! The plants are still very healthy- just a few pests, but I use the D.E. on these too to help with that.
In an effort to always have something producing or growing in every bed of our garden, I've started planting our fall/late summer crops! For our zone (9b), I am doing more zucchini and some yellow squash, plenty of radishes, daikon radishes, carrots, bush beans, cilantro and dill. I've also had some volunteer sprouts of onions and cosmos come up! Not complaining about that!
Daikon radish above. I'm so excited because I'm growing all the ingredients I need to make my kimchi: daikon radish, Chinese cabbage, carrots and garlic!
Sunflowers just won't stop! They have made some really beautiful bouquets and I just love the height and color they add to the garden.
The strawberries, above, are still basically just for Jude. They've grown a lot over the summer and keep setting flowers and fruit, but not enough to really harvest. So I just save them for Judey to pick when he's out in the garden with me. They are soooo sweet!
This oregano LOVES this spot, it gets some shade from the hottest afternoon sun and is just sprawling out all over, near my tomatoes and the pathway. I love picking it fresh to add to stir fries.
So the pineapple sage in the above photo was from a seed packet I just scattered out. It has gone crazy!! It smells wonderful, looks gorgeous, and there's ALWAYS hummingbirds visiting our garden to get themselves a taste!
These are all my cooler weather crops that I've started from seeds! I spent a couple days pricking them out, so they'd each have their own cells to grow in. It took a while but now I have TONS of plants! I definitely won't be able to put all these in our garden, so I plan on sharing them with friends and family once they get bigger.
I can't wait for cooler weather to arrive. Being able to be outside in the afternoon, without risking a heat stroke will be amazing. And since we don't get super cold weather or snow here, I'm able to grow for a very long time. Some of these plants don't mind a light frost, so they might stick around all winter long!
I hope you enjoyed my little August garden tour. If you have any tips or advice on vegetable gardening, I'd love to read your comments below! I'm learning so much with each new garden project and with each new challenge that arrives. This has been such a wonderful labor of love for me. I love growing and sharing and sharing what I learn.
Until next time. xoxo