The Garden in Early July, Part II

If you missed the first part of the stroll through the garden, click here. If not, let’s continue walking while the sun is still out :-).

I have a few new items in the garden this year, which seem to be doing well, at least to my newbie eyes. My hubby has been pushing to plant corn for a few years and since I cut down on the number of tomato plants and didn’t need to grow any tomatillos this year (I still have TONS of tomatillo salsa canned from last year) I had some space in the garden.

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The corn tasseled nicely and now there are ears with silk on the stalks. This is good, right? Anyone know when to harvest corn? Is there an easy way to determine when the corn is ready to be picked? Please comment if you do. If not, I’ll consult the all knowing oracle that answers to the name Google.

There is a volunteer tomatillo growing by the apple trees, though. It is in a shady spot, but I’m letting it grow to see what happens.

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(remind me to weed)

Speaking of apple trees, I actually have a few apples this year! the trees were planted 2 years ago, so I am not expecting much yet. Each tree has at least two apples on it, but to me they don’t look like they are in good shape.

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Can you see the spots on these Arkansas Blacks?

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The Ashmead’s Kernal looks OK currently, but I am skeptical it will make it to harvest time.

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The Firecrackers don’t have spots on them, but they are pretty misshapen, so I am wondering what’s going on inside.

I really need to figure out what to do with the apple trees. I am not sure if I should spray them with something, and if so, what. My hubby worked at a orchard when he was a teenage, so I am leaving it to him to sort out.

When I planted the apple trees I also put in an asparagus bed. I did have two rows of 18 crowns each, but one entire row has been reclaimed by the woods and only about half of the crowns in the other row made it through the first winter. The ones that did survive are doing nicely and I was able to harvest a handful of spears this year. They were delicious! Hopefully next year we will get more. It will be year 3, which is when all of the literature tells me I can begin to harvest a bit more aggressively.

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Another new addition to the garden this year is pumpkins. When I was starting the seedlings inside in the early spring the kiddos has just received a gardening tool kit from the Easter Bunny that came with a packet of pumpkins seeds. Naturally, they wanted to plant them. Never wanting to turn down a learning opportunity or the chance to have a science lesson I talked them through all the steps to planting a seed and boy were they excited when the seeds sprouted! When it came time to move the seedlings to the garden they wanted the pumpkins transplanted as well. I couldn’t think of a reason not to, especially since there was a sunny spot not being used for something else.

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Anyone know when pumpkins are ready to harvest, or do I need to consult the Oracle on this as well?

Speaking of harvesting, I just harvested this year’s garlic crop. These were planted last October from heads I grew last year (free garlic!!). They are hardneck varieties, so I also have a bag of scapes in the fridge waiting for me to make scape pesto.

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We already ate the plums and nectarines, so I don’t have any photos to share. I will try to remember next year to snap a shot before I devour them.

I guess the last thing to note in the garden is the hop vines. My hubby is a beer brewer and planted three varieties of hops a few years ago (Cascade, Centennial, and Hallertau). They are getting pretty close to harvesting so he better start crafting a recipe 🙂

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Well folks, that concludes the garden tour. I will leave you with a few photos of my favorite flower just so you know I don’t just grow edible crops 😉

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Happy gardening!

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