Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The weather has been rather friendly for veggie growing. We have hot sunny days and then a day of rain in between. Seeds that were sown are all sprouting, including the slow germinating carrots. The friendly weather definitely helps. I also tried to sow the seeds on the day when it was about to rain; and I covered the seeded area with a light floating fabric. The fabric might help with trapping the moisture in the soil.

The leeks have grown taller also. Time to start filling the trench...and you know what, I think I didn't dig the trench deep enough. Another lesson learned.

There are holes on the cherry tomato plants. What causes that?

Monday, May 18, 2009

more seeds

It was a sunny hot Sunday yesterday. (max. 23C) We took our chili plants and seedling trays out for sun bathing. Today, it was a 360 degree change (max 16C)...cloudy in the morning and then followed by rain. The radio said this Victoria Day weekend will be the perfect time to do gardening due to the predicted change of weather. They are right. I planted the seeds in the morning, and let the nature takes care of the rest.

Today I've sown the following seeds:
carrots (by the shelling pea)
beets (by the shelling pea, 2008 seeds)
radishes (all over, 2008 seeds, the round type)
salad mix (by the end of the shelling peas, by the edge of the cherry tomato plant)

Also, the leeks seedlings were also down in the field (by the shelling pea/carrot seeds).

We pulled out a number of leeks (planted last year) and made leek and potato soup. There are still leeks remaining. We have been keeping a close watch on their growing as they seem to grow in height only instead of width (the white part). The flower stalk is coming out from the leek one after another. I guess it is time to finish them. In case you wonder, no, they don't taste old. They are still very fragrant and delicious.

Update of the previous sowing: the carrot seeds from the first round of sowing have sprouted, so as the Gai lan. The radishes are still not ready yet. Though the salad seeds have sprouted, they seem to stop growing. I'm glad that we still have constant supply of green salad from the kale that we planted last year(?), red lettuce and arugula. The kale flower is delicious.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

apple tree

This is the second year of our apple tree. Beautiful flowers blossomed and now followed by apples...we hope! At least, this is what we saw today:

Is it exciting? Under the apple tree, we've sown/planted some low height crops such as radishes, lettuces (only about 4 inches tall) and beets (a late harvest crop).

Saturday, May 16, 2009

pea and leek: new method

As a new veggie grower, we learn something new every year and we always try to do things a bit different the next year hoping to see some improvements. So this year, we've tried a new pea trellis. I brought a net from the nursery and mounted it on the wooden frame. It looks pretty good, though I believe that the trellis is not tall enough for the pea to climb. Oh well, next year project...

For the leeks, I've tried the trench method. It is a method that I learned while looking for information about vegetable farming on the Internet. Over the course of the growing season, the trench is gradually filled in with soil. The goal is to encourage the grow of the white part of the leek. (the tall green plants are garlics)

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Last year garlic

I can't remember what happened to the garlic during our first year of growing, however, I do remember the second year. We had a bountiful harvest. After giving some away, there were still plenty left and we weren't able to finish them before they turned bad. So around spring time I guess, quite a number of garlic bulbs had turned into dark brown colour. For some reasons, they didn't sprout, but the clove had become so hard and dry that it was quite impossible to cut. They ended up in the compost. ;(

Last year was our third year of garlic growing. As of now, they are still in good shape. The picture shows the remaining garlic that we harvested last year. Aren't they still pretty looking? And tasty also. So what had we done differently last year? Well, I guess we cured them in the open air under the patio longer than last year. That's it! We'll do it again this year!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

hanging tomato plant

Yes, finally we're giving it a try. The roma (Bush) is going up. We always want to try the hanging style, but we prefer growing things in the ground. However, the backyard is getting pretty crowded this year, with the garlic occupies quite a bit and the leftover leeks from last year also. There is not much space left on the patio either. Naturally, we've moved into the sky...

I've also started some seedlings and put the seedling trays in the cold frame on the patio: cucumber, gai lan and wild arugula.

Today's temperature: high 16C, low 5.8C

Monday, May 4, 2009


This week is supposed to be rainy and cloudy with chances of sun...sounds like a perfect timing for seed sowing:

Beets (seeds from last year):Early wonder tall top
Snow pea (Mr. Big from last year):
Veg Gin (Gai Lan): I didn't know that West Coast seeds carries this one. So I'm giving it a try!
Carrots: Bolero and Flyaway
Wild Arugula
Radishes: French Breakfast
Mesclun Blend (from last year)

We also got some tomato plants from Mark's mom.
She got the seeds from her UK's trip and started the seeds in her greenhouse. I've planted three of the six (cherry, blood, apero).
The rest are stayed in the coldframe on the patio for now.

The carrot seeds that were sown last month were sprouted for quite a while. Unfortunately, they didn't last long. As I was trying to see how the progress was, I couldn't find any of them at all. Guess they became the meal of the unwelcome insects. So frustrated. We'll have to set up something when the new sown seeds start to sprout.

An update from the potato front: the black fabric got pushed up by the strong potatoe plants. They do grow fast! Time to unveil the patch. The plants are beautiful. Meanwhile, some smaller potatoe plants are growing quietly in the potato bin. The potatoes must be self-seedlings themselves. I can't wait to see how many potatoes we get this year.