Blessing shifts to the one who needs it most.
Even if you've not been fed,
Be bread. -- Jelaladdin Rumi
This post has photo-highlights from the past month and LINKS to many timely Posts (below).
Hello everyone, being a gardener helps one tune into weather-changes and the rhythms of the seasons on a much more acute level. The Pacific NW, where we live has been experiencing the profound and ongoing effects of a La Nina year. For us, this means cooler temps and lots more rain. And, while we're grateful that we're not experiencing the record-breaking heat waves of Summer-2021 (our local thermometer reached 109 F at the end of June!) - having SO much rain presents its own challenges. We've had several perennial plants die as their roots drowned (forsythia, lilac and Gogi berries). Grass is growing like crazy, which is wonderful for mulching but sometimes the grass grows so fast between mowings that we have to cut it without bagging it and come back later to collect the clippings when they've dried out a bit, otherwise they just clog the mower. And, having to run the mower twice over the same ground to cut and bag the grass uses twice as much gas!
We are so very grateful for our greenhouses which have allowed us to plant and harvest significant quantities of beets, lettuce, carrots and other cool-weather crops, in spite of the rains outside. All the plants are looking marvelous! The next ten days show a warming trend with little rain so everything planted outside should really begin to grow with summer-vigor!
Garden's Progress: We don't have a lot of great pictures from this past month. When skies are overcast, and share-givers are bundled in sweatshirts and rain coats, it doesn't create a very photogenic scene! But here are a few pics to give you an idea of what we've been up to:
|Llyn, in the rain, spreading straw for the cucumber patch.|
|Here's Chris making piles of coffee grounds and wood-ash in preparation for our 20 cucumber plants.|
|And here's Chris distributing compost and ashes for our corn patch.|
|That bright green patch in the center is all carrot plants. We estimate that it yielded over forty pounds!|
|Chris, Sandra and Jenny planting potatoes on a dry day. We have three, 50' rows of potatoes planted and we just hope that they haven't drowned like the first 150' of potatoes we planted back in April.|
|Suzanne, loading buckets of wood chips to spread around our orchard-trees to minimize weeds and keep the moisture constant through the summer.|
|Now, doesn't that look nice!|
|Come and get 'em!|
|Chris, transplanting lettuce seedlings.|
|Cindy, in the carrot patch|
|Lua, unloading leaf mold (donated by Sunbow Farms/Harry McCormack).|
|...and the truck-load of 'starts' we sent back with her for her students.|
If you live in the local area and have a well, please come to this Free Well-Water Nitrate Screening on Sat. June 25 from 9:30 to 1:00. Bring 1/2 cup of unfiltered well-water. Testing takes approx. 10-minutes.
Originally published early in the pandemic, this post continues to be relevant for those who are attempting to grow more of their own food. Locally Sustainable Gardening in the Face of Supply-Chain Shortages.
|Beautiful, sweet, nutrient-dense carrots from this year.|
We found this next article to be well-written, informative and accurate (in our experience). If your garden-plants are suffering from nutrient deficiencies, they won't produce as well and they will be more subject to the ravages of pests. Also, if nutrients are missing for your plants, they will be missing in your diet as well. Are Nutrient Deficiencies Ruining Your Garden? By Amy Allen
Here is a recipe that we've developed for Delicious Tofu Crumble: a great, plant-based alternative to ground beef or sausage in recipes such as chili, or as a pizza, or salad topping. Enjoy!
|Tofu Crumble makes a wonderful plant-based pizza topping.|
And, though the window is closing on planting the following two crops: Scarlet Runner beans and Hooker's Blue Corn, there's probably just enough time if you live further south than us, or the killing frosts in our area, hold off next Fall. As Chris is fond of saying: "It's always best to plant for all contingencies!" (That way, if one crop fails, you have other crops to fill in their place.)
Grow Your Own Protein - Scarlet Runner Beans: For several years, Chris and I have been able to grow a year's worth of beans for us, and have enough surplus to share with others in our gardening community.
One beautiful side benefit of a rainy spring are some beautiful skies at sunset when the sun just peeks through from the west:
|Sunset at the Sharing Gardens, May 2022.|