A personal record of what's going on in my Northern Michigan zone 4 gardens. I use raised beds and grow organically. Nothing fancy--just trying to garden with nature in mind.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Garden Update July 15,2011


It's been a busy week. I finished clearing another section on the west side of the house. The neighbors are probably celebrating the removal of another blue tarp from our yard.

Not to worry, though. There are still like TEN of them distributed around the place.


The sheet mulching on the southwest corner of the house was a disaster. Those orange lilies broke through 8" of donkey doo and several thick layers of cardboard like it wasn't even there.

My quest for an orange-free garden goes bust yet again! And the shovel is going to be busy. Again!



The Delphiniums in the front have FINALLY been tied to the stakes that I had put in early in the season. Took a whopping 10 minutes. So, why did I WAIT UNTIL HALF THE FLOWER STALKS BROKE??????????????????? Note to self: stop being a procrastinator!!




Into the vegetable garden we go............................................




South border of the fruit garden is filling in nicely. Raspberries forming-looks to be a good crop.



Canteloupe (bottom right of photo) is not liking the cooler weather. Next week is supposed to be hot, though, so perhaps I'll get some growth out of it then.




The Howden pumpkin IS doing well though. Of course, don't pumpkins ALWAYS try to take over everything?



Blueberries are just starting to show the slightest tinge of blue. Won't be long now. The sunflowers on the west border are now about four feet tall. North side flower border is filling in well.




The cauliflower has not headed yet. I did plant the fall crop (9 plants) this week.


I can't believe how much I love the covered beds. No pest problems at all. The garden looks a bit "silly", but so what. Gives Cranky Dolores (neighbor) something else to make snide remarks about.



The broccoli looks like it should all be ready this weekend. I sure hope so as it is supposed to get really hot next week. I'd hate for it to bolt.



The garlic should be pulled next week. It shares a bed with the Fast Break Melon, which is just starting to really take off.


I cut the first kohlrabi on the 14th. That's kind of late, but Don said it was very good-not woody at all. I don't know why they seemed to have been so "leafy". Too much nitrogen?



Picked the final 9x13 cake pan full of strawberries on July 12, giving me a FULL 3 week harvest of almost 75 quarts. Yes. You read that right. We had pie every day, the freezer is stuffed, the neighbors each got 6 quarts. If I never see a berry again, I'll be happy. Well, until next year at least.


I sowed 9-packs of Green Goliath Broccoli, Silver Cup 40 Cauliflower, Baby's Leaf Spinach, and Buttercrunch Lettuce on Thursday for fall crops . Hard to believe I only have about 6 weeks left until the first frost.


Rainfall-a scant 1/4 " on July 11. That brings us up to 3/4" for the month. Thank goodness for mulch.

40 comments:

  1. Your garden is beautiful! Wow, 75 quarts of strawberries...my husband would be in heaven!

    I think you should add some more covered beds to your garden. That's what I would do! A few years ago I got an anonymous, typed letter in the mail. The letter said that I had a couple of things on both my properties that needed to be properly trimmed, a few leaves that were not raked and that I should take care of them so we could all live happily ever after! You can't believe what these two properties looked like before I bought them. I had no idea what wasn't properly trimmed. I took every leaf that I could find and put them in the beds out front and left them there for the entire winter!!

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  2. Your garden is absolutley brilliant! I love the way you have the beds placed. And aren't you blessed to be able to grow it any way you like.

    I love your orange lillies!

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  3. How beautiful it all is! I don't know how you find the time for it all.

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  4. Everything looks so beautiful! I am jealous of your perennials, mine are nice too, BUT it all goes to heck this time of year since I refuse to go out into the heat! If I had been a good girl and cut back all my catmint and stuff like the mums that have been in bloom for a month LOL I would be enjoying another fresh flush of flowers right now!

    If you find a way to kill of those orange ditch lilies, the entire southeast would like to know... LOL!

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  5. My gosh your gardens make me want to cry. They are so pretty! Hey, none of this talk about first frost dates!! It can't be I tell ya!

    Dolores...heheee. Is that her real name even?

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  6. As usual, your photos are eye candy and a sight to behold. Thanks for my morning garden thrill.

    Cranky Delores is so J.E.A.L.O.U.S. her tongue must be green. (And her liver, too.)

    My delphiniums are very . . . scraggly this year. The blossoms seems few and far between. What the heck has caused that??

    Those orange lilies (which are gorgeous, by the way) breaking through the layers of cardboard are a little unbelievable. You might want to sell that stock as "extra hardy!"

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  7. Thanks for a nice share you have given to us with such an large collection of information. Great work you have done by sharing them to all. simply superb. Photo Recovery

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  8. I love seeing the photos of each new bed. Don't you think building new beds is so creatively satisfying? I do.
    nellie

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  9. Your place is so pretty. It is what I imagine mine will be someday :)

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  10. Rigtig gode billeder.
    Smukke blomster.
    Jeg kan rigtig godt li` det første billede af din have.
    Tak for kigget.

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  11. Robin-I'm always amazed at what bothers people. Really, my garden is hardly visible from the road at all. I've had comments referring to my "graveyard", the "giant white caterpillars" and some unprintables too.
    I can't believe you got a letter like that. I think you handled it quite well!
    :)

    Daisy-thanks. I don't "hate" orange lilies, it's just that I'm doing my garden in pastels. It's kind of a "clash".

    Ribbit-thanks-I'm out there at the crack of dawn. I LOVE being outside. This gives me the excuse!
    :)

    Erin-those lilies are the toughest things. I didn't realize they were down there too. I know most of the midwest has them along the roads.

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  12. APG-yup, Dolores is her name and griping is her game. In the four years I've lived here, she has NEVER given me one compliment. I think you should teach her how to be nice. And if THAT doesn't work...................
    ;)

    Mama Pea-blush, blush. And I have a bucket o'lilies with YOUR name on them. Guaranteed to withstand ANYTHING. I'm going to try concrete next!

    Ayesha-thanks!

    Nellie-I agree-it's fun to create something out of nothing. I find it so relaxing. I just hate the "clearing" part that HAS to come first!

    M-wow-thank you! I appreciate that!

    Landbohaven:Tak så meget. Jeg sætter pris på dit besøg!

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  13. Just stinkin' beautiful! Mother (Nature) loves you best :-(

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  14. Thank you for visiting my blog and your kind comments. I love your idea for you wagon - maybe I'll do that one year, but I'll probably be fighting the squirrels for it.

    In answer to your questions - I got one set of wash tubs at an auction, and the other set was set out for garbage day at a neighbors house. I did have another set that I gave to our daughter in law that we got from a co-worker of my husbands. The Vista Silverberry petunias are 'wave' petunias and this is the longest they've been - I have not had to cut them back yet and imagine that they won't get to that stage by the time they are done.

    As for your neighbor - she's just jealous. Consider her comments as compliments. She's evidently never heard the saying 'if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all'.

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  15. Wow, things sure are looking lush and happy your way, especially that orange lily. I think it deserves that spot after coming through all that stuff. I enjoyed clicking on the photos to see them larger. I love the way you have everything situated, and your rocks around the edges.

    I don't remember if you've said on your blog how you put your covers on your beds. I'd like to try that, but I'm not very handy. I don't know what to use. That broccoli looks like it could be eaten any time to me. Yum!

    Thanks for your nice comment on my GBBD post.

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  16. AG-oh yeah, right. You , the goddess of beans and raspberries and all good things. We'll talk....

    Judy--garbage???? They were in the GARBAGE??? Boy, did YOU luck out!

    CG Sue-I will do a post sometime next week on how to do those beds. They're cheap and EASY.
    Thanks for your visit!

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  17. Your gardens show how much hard work you put into them. Those lilies can have a life of their own. I dug up some and threw them in a bucket, forgot about them and the next year they grew without any soil.

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  18. Orange Day lilies are invincible! We removed two pick-up loads full about 5 years ago and *thought* we got them all....I still pull a few up every spring!
    Love your gardens!

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  19. BRJ-I've been transplanting them to the front of the barn because of their "toughness". It's PURE sand there. The heat is unbearable. And they put on a great display without fail!

    Corinne-oh dear. I was hoping to get them out of the bed forever. Well, I'll keep the shovel handy!

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  20. Hi Sue, glad to meet you! I've spent a very enjoyable time strolling around in your gardens. The delphiniums are just stunning, I love blue! The ditch lilies are also the most tenacious things, sorry to hear yours broke through their barrier. I'm using hay mulch this year, trying to suffocate some sow thistle, and after piling the hay on over 20" thick, they are still coming through. Soon I'll have hay piled 6' high and I bet they'll still make it. I should have tried the cardboard, hmmmmmmmmmm.........

    I have never been much of a vegetable gardener (fifteen tomato plants, two rows of onions and four green peppers are it this year) so when I see your grand plot and read about all the produce I am flabbergasted. You definitely can teach me a whole LOT of things.

    I agree with your other followers, Cranky Dolores is just jealous. She's probably got a faded plastic geranium in a pot on her back steps as the extent of her gardening. Folks that don't garden much are the worst critics of all. They just don't realize how much work it is. (It is fun to mess with their heads once in awhile, though.) I could write a book on the comments we've had over the years from people touring here....yes, people, I CAN hear you when you're standing in my yard, lol.

    Sorry to write a book here, too, ooops, anyway, glad to meet you! We just had another whopping rainstorm this morning, this makes two inches of rain in less than 24 hours, so maybe it's headed to Michigan. I'll keep my fingers crossed you get only the rain and not the damage, my garden looks like a helicopter landed here.

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  21. Karen-thank you so very much for your comments. I couldn't believe when I found your blog---it's just so beautiful. And now I can see why--you're a very kind gal!
    Glad you got some rain. I hope I get a bit too. Oh, the temps are awful!!!!

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  22. Beautiful.
    About your orange Day Lilies...
    I would keep them. If they are that vigorous and thrive in your garden, that's one less plant you'll have to baby.

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  23. No more blue tarp? Bummer! I got a picture for you to remember it by if you happen to miss it.

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  24. Maybelline-I agree with the orange lilies. I am going to transplant them to the barn. Something THAT CAREFREE deserves a place at our home. It's just, well, that front border is going to be pastels. I think that orange might be, um, LOUD.
    :D

    Josh-don't worry-there are dozens more scattered about and plans for more beds this fall. You going to dig?????

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  25. Sue - you are simply freaking amazing! Your gardens are so prolific! What drives you? (Besides bugging certain neighbors...)

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  26. 2Tramps-a pot of coffee every morning between 3 and 6 a.m.!
    :D

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  27. What a fabulous garden you have, I'm most envious of your veg plot and bountiful harvest...the slugs only left me 4 pods of peas! I sympathise with the trials of living with blue tarp (ours is on the snow collapsed garage roof, the backdrop to so many of the taller plants). I have similar winding gravel paths but your boulders are far more impressive than my 1/2 football sized ones. You've put it all together really nicely.

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  28. Cally-sorry to hear about your peas! The Blue Jays had a blast with mine--so many with holes pecked in them. It's frustrating-so many critters to eat our gardens!
    Thanks for stopping!

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  29. Oh my goodness your gardens are so beautiful!! You have done such an awesome job!!

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  30. The wagon is so cute-I was gonna copy that idea but now with all my bad news I just don't have my heart in it. my neighbors yard looks a lot like yours but the last big rains wiped out her tomatoes.Mine stayed safe because I container garden up on the deck,keeps the deer away too.

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  31. Alicia-thanks so much and thanks for stopping!

    Judy, sorry about your bad news. Perhaps a little project might be just what you need to keep your mind busy.
    And smart-gardening on the deck---I know what you mean about deer!

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  32. your gardens are very beautiful! I love the rock and the way you have used it in such tasteful ways! some people use it to make sure nothing grows around here...lol
    have a great weekend

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  33. Tootsie-around here we use rocks to get rid of them. Dig anywhere--and there they are. They sometimes even build houses with em! Like mine!
    :D

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  34. Um um um, looks like you have your own acre of produce aisle -- nice work -- and don't we know it's work, well make that a labor of love!

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  35. Tall Clover Farm-I'm with you-I've never considered this to be work. I so enjoy the time spent outside. Well, maybe removing Bishops Weed is work. Ugh.
    :)

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  36. I am too a fan of your work! The way you placed every plant it's just genius and it looks awsome

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  37. Wow! Awesome garden! Love the photos and how you arrange your veggies. Looks like that everything in your garden is doing great. I can't wait for your post when you harvested your veggies.

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  38. Rose-thanks so much for your lovely comment!
    :)

    TabbyAnimals-I'm not so good at posting harvest pictures--I'm usually so busy trying to process and freeze stuff. I'm trying to do better on that. So many bloggers have such wonderful pictures of their harvests--I'm jealous!
    :)

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  39. I want to come live with you! I take care of the meanies if you take care of the wormies. I grew broccoli one year but had trouble with the little wormies. Yuck!

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  40. FD-LOL! You probably couldn't handle Dolores-she's a real meanie...but I'd still give you some worm-free broccoli!
    :)

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