Tag Archives: kitchen gardens

What’s Green and Growing Outta Control?

veggie garden

This girl’s vegetable bed!

vegetable bed

It’s been a month since the veggies went into the ground. And boy, have they exploded! There’s been nothing to harvest yet, but one lone green pepper is working it’s way to a “pick-able” status, and just in the last few days, a bunch of flowers have popped up on the tomatoes and cucumber.

cucumber blossom

I’m hopeful that Operation Homegrown Eats 2013 will soon find some fresh salad fixins on my plate.

Home Sweet Cincinnati

As much as a long drive home can be boring, tedious, and literally painful, I always love when you get the first glimpse of “home.” Whether it’s a familiar highway exit, a “Welcome to ___” sign or, in our case, a view of the city skyline, there’s always something special that signifies what’s near and dear. Tom and I even went out of our way (kind of) to make sure we crossed the Ohio River to catch this glimpse of the skyline – we both agreed it was more eventful than taking the back-roads route home.

When we got home, I was excited to find that my veggie garden seems to be picking up. It’s the end of August and I’ve only harvested 2 cucumbers and 1 lonely little strawberry!But I was able to pick this assortment this week:

Yep, that’s a cantaloupe! I don’t think it’s quite ripe yet, but I’ll give it a couple of days on my kitchen counter and hopefully it will be ripe enough to eat! I can’t remember what type of tomatoes those are. I thought the smaller two were Romas, but they might just be some kind of salad tomato. I think the larger two are Brandywines. My notes got all jumbled when I transferred my seedlings into the ground. I’ll have to do a better job of tagging my plants next year!

What do you have planned for your weekend? I think I’ll be making some kind of tomato salad. And hopefully enjoying some fresh cantaloupe!

(You can follow me on Instagram @onuwriter06)

Vegging Out

My dream garden includes an enormous kitchen garden full of every fresh veggie, herb and fruit imaginable, so that I’d never have to buy produce from the grocery store again. When we picked out plants with our landscaper last month, I even tried to include a honeycrisp apple tree (I was out-voted, though. Boo).

The only problem? I fear I have a slightly less-than-green thumb, especially when it comes to herbs and veggies. My past includes a few failed attempts at homegrown basil, a zucchini plant that was never meant to be, and what was a promising collection of tomatoes and herbs fell victim to a massive aphid attack. But, this all happened during our Condo Years, when we had but a 3rd story deck with barely 6 hours of direct sunlight per day.

I am determined that this year is going to be different, and better. At the very end of March, I eagerly started seedlings indoors using a Burpee Growing Kit. It was easy to set up – the kit comes with little peat pellets, each in their own cell. Then you simply add water to expand the pellets, add your seeds, set the greenhouse cover on top & place near light.

*not actual image! This is how the kit is shown on Burpee’s website.

My seeds sprouted within a few days to a week. I figured they’d need about 7-8 weeks before going in the ground. But some of them, the zucchini squash especially, took off so quickly that they were falling over the sides of the container. Then everything started looking a little sickly. Some of my zucchini seedlings even died (which my father called “remarkable” b/c apparently it takes a lot to kill a zucchini plant. Guess I’m just skilled that way). So, I transplanted the few seedlings I could salvage into larger 4-inch pots leftover from planting the gerberas last weekend.

Little transplanted seedlings. I hope they make it!

I’m still trying to figure out the best location in our yard for these little guys. I’m hoping they’ll make it in the ground by the 2nd weekend in June. Tom & I would like to build a semi-raised bed, but they’re most likely going alongside the house somewhere, so not sure if the timbers would be necessary or not. I welcome any advice, tips, and personal experiences on how to tackle this!

One of my friends, who has a massive kitchen garden that I am totally jealous of, graciously gifted me some of his tomato “seedlings” this weekend (I put seedlings in quotes b/c these things are already about a foot tall). So at least those should last through the summer.

Happy Gardening!