Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The garden grows

I don't know about where you live, but gardening here in Maine last year was pure hell. When it didn't rain it looked like it would. The ground was so wet, and for so long, that slugs and snails had the run of the place practically all summer long. A lot of people just gave up. Others threatened to, or wished they had.

Mercifully this summer is shaping up to be a good one. I have two plots at an organic community garden, totaling just shy of 300 square feet of growing space. After being away for a few days I discovered a lot going on. Here are some pics.

This is the first artichoke to show up. It's the crop I'm most excited about. I have nine plants this year, twice as many as last.

Winters are too cold here for fig trees, so I potted one. The plan is to keep the tree small by pruning it heavily each year; and I'll overwinter it in the garage, which I insulated last summer.

This is a first for me: cardoons. Looks just like an artichoke plant, as they're closely related in the thistle family, but there's no fruit here, just edible stalks.

The fava beans are way ahead of last year. Think it'll be an early crop.

The chickpeas are also a first for me. Very cool-looking pods. Can't wait to see how they turn out.

That's it for now. More to come throughout the season, I'm sure.


Proud Italian Cook said...

Love your garden! Artichokes and fava beans fantastic!

Jeannie said...

Very healthy garden! You do have green fingers. I have given up on my garden, the weeds won!:P

Kate. said...

Woah, way to grow cool stuff in your garden! I assume you have like 10 Roma tomato plants somewhere? ;)

S. said...

Everything looks absolutely wonderful, lush and healthy!! You are going to have an amazing harvest this year!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Your garden is really flourishing! I never saw chick peas growing in a garden before.

I also have a fig tree in a pot and we drag it into the garage for the winter. Last year was the first time we pruned it. I'm curious as to when you do the pruning? Right after the leaves fall off in the fall or in early Spring? We get about 100 figs a year from it ..each and every one is a treasure.

I don't have any dirt in my yard so we have to grow everything in pots. It can be frustrating at times as the yield is small but I love fresh tomatoes and basil and peppers so I plant them every year.

Mister Meatball said...

PIC, Jeannie & UM: Appreciate the kind words. Grazie.

Kate: Yes, got plenty of tomatoes, but no Romas. Oddly, I have no luck w/ them up here.

Pat: This is a new fig tree to me, and so I haven't pruned it yet. May not have to this year, as it's small. But I'd think the best time to prune is when it's dormant, in winter probably. 100 figs sounds great. This one has a couple dozen.

Anonymous said...

Your garden is beautiful. Gin

Chef Dennis Littley said...

wow...what a great garden you have going on many different wonderful veggies...I would never have thought to grow chick peas, thats amazing!! I can't wait to see your crops come in and what you make with them!

Wreader said...

Nice 'chokes. Good looking garden... definitely better than mine. But I have a few 'maters that will be worth eating.

Carbohydrate Facts said...

Great pictures! I have never seen an artichoke plant, very cool.