Sunday, July 25, 2010

Balcony garden update (aka I have nothing more exciting to blog about...)

True, it's mid-summer, I've already taken my vacation, and Andrew's out of town at a conference in Germany, therefore I simply don't have much to write about. That's not to say I just sit around at home all the time twiddling my thumbs (as blogged last week I spend most of my nights editing or writing), but I don't do a lot of super exciting things that I think other people would care about (not that I think people care much about what I write ordinarily anyway). I suppose I could track my experience of training for a marathon, but I'm not a fitness expert, so my musings would be purely self-case study and as I'm well aware, an "n" of 1 does not equal sound scientific evidence.

And so I turn to our garden. Unfortunately the weather hasn't been the best for vegetable growing thus far (although the week that's passed since I originally wrote this has been quite nice). We've had a lot of rain and not much in the way of sun or heat. I pulled up the radishes a week or two ago as the thick prickly stalks and flowers sprouting from the stems seemed to indicate the were never going to blossom into an edible plant no matter how long I left them in the soil. I fear the carrots may go the same way as the radishes, although the planter shown below might yet turn out to be all right--I haven't peaked in on the roots to see how they're comming along. And the rhubarb has not done well either (I didn't think those things could be killed). The roots rotted due to over watering and although Andrew tried to perform a partial root-ectomy, its leaves have continued to yellow and wither.
Our carrots. I think they're looking pretty good.
On the bright side, some of our plants have flourished. Check out the tomato plant. Despite a stem-fracture caused by high winds (have I mentioned we live on the 12th floor?) there are at least a dozen little tomatoes sprouting all over. Then there's the zucchini. No sign of vegetation yet, but look at the leaves on that thing, its really going strong (and the lettuce isn't doing too badly either). Next over are our happy potatoes. I can't wait to dig them up in the fall. I suppose we could have pulled some up early and had baby potatoes--maybe next year if we increase our crop size. Finally there are the peppers. They're still pretty tiny, and very green, but they seem to be content hanging out on the side of the railing.
A couple of our furthest along tomatoes, still very green.
A full view of our tomatoes.
Our zucchini plant surrounded by lettuce.
One of our pepper plants. How exciting! I hope it matures into a bright red pepper.
The potatoes are huge! I can't wait to dig them up in the fall.
We'll continue to tend to our crops over the remainder of the summer and take stock when it comes time to harvest. I don't think we'll bother with radishes next year, and possibly no carrots either. On the other hand the tomatoes and the potatoes are pretty much a given. Perhaps some other types of squash might be worth while? Or more herbs? I've got a small pot of parsley and basil inside, but I wouldn't say no to chives, mint or basil.



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