Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Perimeter garden

Last year, I made garden beds around the perimeter of the backyard but severely underutilized the space.  I was new to the gardening game, and I didn't want to get in over my head. Last year I enjoyed a good harvest from nearly everything I planted.  This year, I was determined to get the most use out of my garden space. 

I may have gotten in over my head.

Along the north fence with the pear and peach trees is the Wall of Tomatoes.  I believe there are 25 or so tomato plants along that fence, though I've lost track of the exact number. There's a pepper or two nestled amongst the tomatoes, and two basil patches thrown in for good measure. This area gets a decent amount of sunlight which hopefully lead to bushels and bushels of tomatoes.

Along the west side of the fence, I have two sections of potatoes. This is my first time growing potatoes so I have no idea what to expect. So far, not a lot is happening.

Moving south along the west side of the backyard, you'll find the broccoli. As with the potatoes, this is my first time growing broccoli and I really don't know what's going on here.  The broccoli is green and the leaves get bigger each week, so I'm taking that as a good sign.

I planted four varieties of eggplant: Epic, Fairy Tale, Gretal and Hansel.  In that order. Which is alphabetical, you might have noticed.  Which gives me a great deal of satisfaction.

I have two strawberry patches along the west fence.  All Star is a June-bearing strawberry, and Ozark Beauty is an ever-bearing variety.  Strawberry plants can take a full year to get established, but once they are the plants will last for several years.  While I won't get nearly enough berries for freezing or jam, there have been a few to nibble on. Yum!

Turning the corner to the south side of the yard (same side as the apple trees), you'll find my beet patch.  I first tasted fresh beets at Uncle Rich's house last November. They were delicious, and I was compelled to plant some of my own this year.

To the left of the beets is the kale patch. I've been collecting kale recipes on Pinterest for quite some time...now I just need to pick this stuff and start cooking!

Next are the peas and carrots flanked by two more tomato plants.  The trellis is actually a broken baby gate I found by the side of the road. Peas don't grow very high, so I thought this support would be sufficient.

Pole beans are next.  The seeds I used were from last year, and so far only half of them have sprouted. At this point, I think that's all I'm going to get.  Soon, I'll get some trellis' up for the beans.

Trellis' are already in place for the cucumbers. For some reason, my cucumbers are not getting off to a great start.  Maybe they aren't getting enough sun?  Though last year, I did have one cucumber vine along this fence and it did just fine. Maybe they're just slow to get started.  I planted three varieties this year, and if I have a large enough yield I'll try my hand at making homemade pickles.

Finally, this last section is a mish-mash of the peppers and tomatoes I couldn't fit anywhere else.  I'm not complaining, though...there is no such thing as too many peppers or tomatoes.  Overall, I think I have 20 or so pepper plants (I'll share those pictures tomorrow) and 30 or so tomato plants. I lost count.

So that's my perimeter garden, which accounts for almost 3/4 of my total garden space. I'll share the rest of it with you tomorrow. 

Have a great day!

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