I’m finding it difficult to write regularly and I’m so disappointed in myself for that. I always resolve to make time for this blog, but life ends up getting in the way. Well, here goes again … a new start … again ….
It has been wonderful to have the veggie garden up and running. We’ve had a decent crop of silverbeet and dwarf beans ( the plants are small, not the beans). We had some success with leaf lettuces, but lots and lots of rain has meant that they’ve bolted quickly and so the chooks (more about them in the next post) have benefited. We planted some Rainbow Swiss Chard after the silver beet, but they haven’t done well – too much rain perhaps. The leaves all developed some kind of disease so they’ve mostly been fed to the chooks as well. We’ll try growing those again. I was disappointed with the slow growth of the capsicums – they’re only coming in now, but I’m looking forward to a decent crop.
The eggplant was also slow to fruit, but now there are lots on the bushes. But they’ve got some sort of blossom blight so they have developed a hard grey green skin on the bottom. I think they will still be okay to eat.
The Lebanese cucumbers are struggling along – every time we think that it’s died, it produces another small cucumber so we’re leaving it for now.
We planted 3 tomato plants – a Grosse Lisse, a Roma and a cherry tomato called Sweet Bite. The Roma (our favourite) produced one crop and then died. The Grosse Lisse has produced a handful of tomatoes, but they have been attacked by birds or insects. It still has some fruit, but not as much as I anticipated. The Sweet Bite has completely taken over the garden bed!! It is flourishing and growing beyond our expectations. Being relative novices, we didn’t know about tomato vines – it took us by surprise – the vines just keep on growing and growing … We’ve had a steady supply of cherry tomatoes as a result.
We’ve learnt such a lot and so next time (hopefully) we’ll be better about the staking and providing a trellis system for the vines to grow on.
Although things haven’t grown exactly according to plan (what plan is ever perfect), we’ve all been so pleased with the garden. We all take a walk out there before breakfast or when we get home to see how things are growing and what we can harvest. It’s so satisfying to eat something that was organically grown in our own garden. I’ve already started plans to build more garden beds for next season. We have a large back garden which is mostly lawn and I want to make it more productive as we don’t use the lawn at all. We won’t dig up all the lawn, but eventually, I’d like to use about half the area for more productive use – maybe even put in some fruit trees.
Have you started a veggie garden? What have you had success with? Any tips for growing eggplants or swiss chard?