Sunday, April 30, 2006

Vacation? I'm not ready!

I spent a good chunk of today stringing soaker hose around my garden beds, so that the cat-sitter can water things by just turning on the faucet-- since he or she will have to hand-water several potted trees and my gladiolas, geraniums, and etc. I'm going to line up several of the planters at the loose end of the soaker hose and loop it around them, so that it's as easy as possible. Also potted several tiny things out of 3-inch pots and into big pots, so that I can water them once and they'll be ok.

Another thing we need to do before we go on vacation is to eat this little cauliflower. This is a picture of it from last weekend, when it was about softball sized. Now it's twice that, and still firm, but starting to have a 'bad hair day' as it thinks about bolting in the recent warm weather. Wups! Better have it for dinner tomorrow! Also need to pick peas, as the sugar-snap pods are plumping up, which makes them stringy. We also need to eat a whole bunch of lettuce, as I had to pull out a small section of the lettuce bed that was overshadowing a tomato-- lettuce liked the colder weather more than the tomato did. Missed the Weekend Herb Blogging deadline running soaker hose around until dark, mea culpa.

I also moved the two potted fig trees, a Violetta and a bargain 'mystery fig', out of the greenhouse today. We haven't moved the greenhouse to its rightful home, off of our patio deck, and temps are in the 80's there during the day even with all vents and the door open. The figs love to respire, and are using up about 3 gallons every other day. There's a good breba crop of figs, as you can see in this photo (about half again the size of a ping-pong ball but still very hard) and I hope that moving the trees outside doesn't mess them up. After they finish with the spring figs, they're both getting transplanted into 32-gal plastic garbage cans, with a deep watering pipe. My old porch fig tree on my apt balcony thrived in that scenario. I'd like to put one of them in the ground here, but the park management takes a dim view of non-dwarf trees, and these would definitely get BIG.

Some of my tomatoes are growing suckers, so I pinched them off this weekend. The tomatoes at the local hardware stores are HUGE, making me grumble internally about 'so why do I go to all this trouble raising seedlings?', especially since there are so many heirlooms available this year-- Lemon Boy, Brandywine, Black Krim, Black Prince, Mr Stripey/Tangella, etc etc. Heirloom tomatoes are now mainstream. Well, I'm still growing a few I haven't seen, and all those foot-tall, thumb-thick tomato plants in 4-inch pots will spend the next several weeks growing their roots out, so we'll probably all get tomatoes at the same time anyway. Or so I keep telling myself!


Blogger Kalyn said...

The way you take care of your garden is very impressive.

9:39 AM PDT  
Blogger Strata said...

Thanks kindly!

The garden really helps burn off some of the nervous energy from not having kids, and keeps me from going nuts here in Urban Purgatory rather than in the rural countryside of my youth.

10:59 AM PDT  
Blogger *kel said...

hola Strata, lucky you, i want my own vege garden :) thanks for checking on the brocolli salad. yes sucralose is great. I sometimes substitute sugar with these to cut the calories. It should work. The sweetness brings out the flavor in this dish. It´s an essential part of the recipe. hasta pronto. k

11:31 AM PDT  

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