Tag Archives: Vegetable garden

StayCation Day Five: The Vegetable Garden!

On the last day of my staycation, it was time to clean up the vegetable garden. The cucumbers have been long gone. The tomatoes were hanging on -barely. Its time to replace the Summer veggies with Fall, cool-season, vegetables.

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The trellises will be cleaned and stored in the garden shed.

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The Buddha will keep a watch on them as I work on the beds.

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A couple sweeps of the garden rake removes roots and weeds. The soil is leveled using the back of the rake.

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The seeds are broadcast sewn. They will germinate within a few days if it continues to be warm.

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Gus enjoys looking for any wildlife he can find among the azaleas and daylilies.

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The daytime temps were  in the 80s for the second day today. This will help the seeds to germinate but if it stays warm too long they my bolt, or go to seed too fast. This can produce bitter greens. Cooler temperatures are best to prolong the season. Some greens, such as collards, are best when they are nipped by frost at night!

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And the vegetable garden….

I am running a little late with this as seeds for the Summer garden could have been started indoors weeks ago but I thought I should still share the information.

Some vegetables are best directly sown where they are to grow. Root crops like carrots and radishes, as well as, small, leafy greens such as arugula, lettuce, and spinach. You can sow them in a row or broadcast them to form a patch.

Large plants like tomatoes, peppers, and squash can be started early indoors to shorten the time toward when they would begin blooming. One of the problems we have with heat here is that once the summer night temperatures are consistently about 74f tomatoes, peppers, and a few other plants will stop fruiting during the hottest part of Summer so starting plants early inside is a way to prolong your harvest. Most vegetables will have the estimated time from germination to first harvest printed on the pack..

The seed catalogs began to arrive by the dozens as early as December and I saw a few new varieties I wanted to try. Since I most likely will not find these in my local garden center I will have to start the plants myself.

I purchased peat trays to start the seeds.They will be transplanted to the garden once they are large enough and all threat of frost is over.

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I also purchased a few new herbs for the herb garden at the NC Farmers Market.

Oregano

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Sage

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Lemon Thyme

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Last Fall, I direct seeded arugula and the warm weather we are experiencing now has encouraged it to bolt. No, not run out the garden! Bolting is the agricultural term for when cool season greens bloom, go to seed, than die. I don’t waste them as I just spread some fresh soil over them and dig them under as green manure!

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On another note…

It’s that time of the year when the squirrels are aggressively seeking shelter to build nest and raise young! So much so that they have chewed the blue bird nesting boxes open and have removed the metal guards that were suppose to have prevented this!

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They were a good buy so I will just replace them. The State Employees Credit Union sells them to raise money for a blue bird organization so they should be selling them soon again this year!

Helpful links:

http://granville.ces.ncsu.edu/2012/02/starting-vegetable-seeds/
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Filed under General Gardening, seeds