Monday, August 6, 2012

Gardening: 2 Months later

Two months ago, I started my first ever garden. I had no clue what I was doing or what I was getting myself into, but I’ve learned a lot already and enjoy the time spent watering, weeding and just plain admiring!

Last week I showed you how I started my seeds in pots and how they grew after 3 weeks, when I decided to transplant them into the garden. Now it’s time to see how they have done since then! This is about 1 month after transplanting.

I have 6 types of plant this year, which were chosen on what was available at the Dollarama at the time. I really didn’t want to spend a lot on the first year not knowing what I was doing.

apartment garden 2 months old

When Seedlings Become Plants

Most of my garden is composed of cucumbers. They are the plants that did the best from seedling and I didn’t have the heart to kill them off. They’ve almost run over my yellow beans, but not quite. I did not expect them to overrun everything like that.


This picture was taken a little over a week after the previous ones, so the cucumber had time to grow up on the fence a bit more

There has been a LOT of flowers for the last 2-3 weeks. Let's take a peak under the leaves, shall we? So many beautiful flowers! (I know only the male flowers give cukes, but still...)



Unfortunately, I've lost a couple of plants since these picture were taken. I've got cucumber beetles :( I didn't know they were bad bugs at first, so I didn't kill them off from the start. Now I'm killing them every chance I get!

On the left, below, you can see a leaf that's been eaten by the cucumber beetles, and on the right, you see that dead/sad looking leaf? It hasn't really been eaten by the beetles, but it is dying because of a plant virus coming from the stomach of the beetles. I really don't know if they will make it through. I cut some leaves every 2 days about.

cucumber leaves eaten by cucumber beetles

Nonetheless, the cucumbers are growing!! I just hope my plants survive until they fully mature.



My yellow beans are in the middle of the cucumbers. (Well not anymore, I had to remove the 2 plants on the other side of the yellow beans).



I got some flowers a few weeks ago and actually got some yellow beans after!! I am sooo excited about that, my first vegetable!

yellow beans maturing

Only thing is I only have 2 plants, so I didn't have a very much.



I still got to make a small sidedish out of them, so I’m still happy. They accompanied my fish meal last week, which I shared earlier on Facebook. (If you want to see my Facebook updates live, like the Color Me Domestic page!)


Don't mind the burnt garlic and pine nuts, please, I'm not the best cook, but I am trying!! And learning! Must remove the pan from the heat as soon as garlic becomes slightly golden ;)

I know now that they are very easy to grow, that I have to start seedlings every couple of weeks if I want to eat some regularly, and I need maybe 6 plants, or more, to have a good portion at a time.


My carrots did not transplant well, as I mentioned previously. Why I thought starting them as seeds in individual pots is beyond me right now. You can laugh at me, I know I am! I’ve just got a tuff there, which {was} hidden by some cucumber leaves. We’ll see later how they do, how they grow in the soil I have which is laden with rocks.



Next is my lettuces. I got 3 of them. I thought they would grow bigger, but my grand-ma told me I should harvest them already. I’ve now harvested some by cutting the leaves (that were more open and falling) an inch or so past the stem part. It was enough for one salad. I’m excited to see how well they will regrow, and how fast. I’m not too sure yet how many I need to grow for next year because of that. To be continued...


These look incredibly sad compared to what I have now. But at the time, I was super excited!

My peppers are quite sad looking, as in so tiny still! I know beyond a doubt that I will not get anything from them this year, but I’m still keeping them to see how they grow. I will have to start the seedlings WAY early, like March or even Febuary, inside, if I’m to get anything.



I got 1 plant that is bigger amongst them (front left), and that one I transplanted before the others (when it was just an inch tall, if you remember from last post), at the same time as the other vegetables. I was afraid they were too small at that time to transplant, but I still wanted to test. Seem like they weren’t too small and it grew so much better!

Next year I will also just keep 1 seedling per pot, and get bigger pots, to give them the best chance to grow big and strong before putting them in the garden.

Lastly, I also have some broccolis, about 7 of them (out of 9) survived thus far. Some are bigger some are smaller. But most grew crooked, I don’t understand why. As in they grew horizontally a bit before shooting upwards. They seem to be growing stronger stems as time goes by, but no flowers and nothing that resembles a broccoli head has surfaced between the leaves. I read they like soft soil, maybe that’s my problem? I’ve got to do more research on broccolis...



Oh, and I think a squirrel got to this one, I hope it was not the only one that was actually gonna make a broccoli!



Watering

Living in an apartment building, an old one at that, we do not have an outdoor hose. I have to take my watering can inside to my bathroom and fill it up in the bathtub. At least we live on the first floor and we don’t have to climb too many stairs. I need to fill it up 4-5 times to water everything, including my flowers.

And I just HAD to get the orange watering can :) (FYI orange is my trademark, apart from being short)



Sometimes we do leave for the weekend. We have very generous neighbours who water our garden if it's not raining, on top of their own. But I always worry and try to water extra before going.

I want to finish by showing you my flower garden, I don’t want to do an other post just for that, so here goes.



I got some marigolds and some lobelias, yellow and purple, from the store. I planted them in the small corner garden in front of our balcony. I didn’t want to plant my garden there for a couple of reasons. One, there’s about 2-3 hours of direct sunlight there. Two, there’s about 8 inches of soil there, which I didn’t think it would be enough.

I don’t have much, and it looks a little empty, especially since the squirrels have a fun time snapping off the stems and leaving them to die. I started some marigolds from seeds, too, and have replaced some of the bought marigolds that were not doing so well, but I don’t know when they will start blooming (they are a bit lighter in color).



Next year I want to do a nice arrangement here. Maybe start a few flowers indoors earlier (if I have the space), or else buy some more. Definitely will need a gardening budget of some sort for next year with all my plans, hein?!

I’ve got a couple of stock flowers that are in my vegetable garden. Again, dunno when they will flower.



There’s 4 Morning Glories up on the fence to the side. They’ve grow up to the top of the fence (5’) and are still trying to climb! They are wrapping around each other because it's the only thing they are finding to climb, it's kinda funny. I hope to get flowers by the end of summer! Only 1 month left :( Maybe more with the wonderful weather we've been having this year (knock on wood, hope I didn't jynx us!)



Lastly I got a couple of Lantana plants, bought, planted in this big pot. This is one of my favorite flowers, but unfortunately, my plant it not flowering too well. They are suppose to be yellow, orange, pink flowers all in a bunch (like the other that are blooming), but they last a day or 2 like that and quickly turn dark pink, so I dunno what’s wrong with them, but I’m kinda bummed. And right now they have completely stopped producing flowers, even though I am sure they have enough water. I'm kinda really sad :(



Alright, that concludes my garden tour, I’d love it if you linked up your garden post if you have one, or several!

I’ll come back in a month’s time and give probably the final rundown on how my garden grew, and what I want to do for next year. I already have bigger plans for next year, and can’t wait to give this gardening another go!

FYI, I am in zone 5a. (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)





I party at these parties.

6 comments:

  1. Impressive. When do you find the time for all the things you do gardening, organizing, working, blogging :). I am sure, with each new vegetable you pick, you feel a sense of pride and accomplishment. Job well done.

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  2. I'm so jealous of your garden!! You even got to cook up some of your own veggies!! This is definitely inspiration for me to get my gardening act together :)

    I think flowers don't bloom unless they're really well nourished so maybe they just need some fertilizer?

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    Replies
    1. some flowers won't bloom if they are over watered

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  3. Your garden is looking great! I'm jealous. I kind of neglected our garden this year; seeing your post makes me wish I hadn't. Enjoy the rewards from all your hard work!

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  4. I think you did freakin awesome for your first ever garden-seriously! Starting from seed can be tricky and I have almost given up completely. The peppers always give me fits too. I start them inside at like Christmas and have a light on a timer to get them the most light and SUPER strong before they go outside. If you do tomatoes next year start them early too. Your cukes are amazing. I have had my first really good year with cukes and we are really enjoying them. I had to laugh about your small harvest of beans- the same thing happens to me. With a family of 4 20 beans don't go very far:) Good work sistah:)
    xxx
    Kim

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  5. Love your garden it looks great, I started a flower garden 3 weeks ago and I'm quite thankful for the seeds that have survived (they are marigolds and zinnias by the way).Reading your blog has inspired me to start growing veggies, although I might just grow only what I'll actually eat.
    P.s. Did you know that you can eat the petals of your marigolds (they should be pesticide free though), I don't know about the others you have growing though, anyways bon chance with the future of your garden.

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