Sunday, April 10, 2011

Update from the Gigantic Garden

This morning the mini-farmers and I rode out to the ranch to feed and milk. After that chore, they helped me till and row an area near the goat pen where we planted pumpkin seeds. It's a bit early yet for pumpkins, but I always felt like there was something magical about them, and sometimes it's nice to have the magic sooner rather than later. I'm due for a little magic, I think. Pumpkins vine all over the place and make massive fruits that are unbelievable. Each kid planted a row. I planted two so no one would fight. We had saved seeds from last year's jack-o-lanterns.

Apple Blossom
I still need to decide where to place the packs of bareroot dormant strawberry plants I found at Home Depot. I was hoping to build a nice raised bed from pallet wood, but somehow I keep forgetting to get a new spark plug for my generator. Too many things to do and not enough time.

While we were working away, our northern neighbor was busy clearing out some land on his property. He pointed out a gate he'd left for me if I wanted it--a 6 foot antique that had, at one time, come from Sears. Pretty cool. I asked if he wanted to get rid of the old metal t-stakes that went along with the gate, and he drove those over as well. I had needed some more to reinforce my pallet-picket fence and hadn't gotten around to buying some. I couldn't thank him enough. Whatever will I do with a new gate? Hmm. I'll have to think on it. I don't think it's strong enough to use for a pig. Everything I've read about them leads me to believe they're rough on wire. It's a nice gate though and it came with the hardware. I had an extra chain link pole too, just laying around...

Bell Pepper
 In the meantime, the Gigantic Garden is flourishing. There are little bell peppers hanging down, mini zucchini attached to the bold golden flowers, and today Farmer G pointed out that indeed, the DILL has sprouted up from the ground! I was about to give up on it but there it was all over the row just like the weed it is.

Further inspection proved that basil will sprout in Tucson. I hope it will thrive out there since I dumped two packets of the seeds in a row. I saved a couple more packets to reseed when these get about halfway grown.

Traipsing along in the rows I found that the beets too had started to come up. I love beets. Can't wait to dig them out and feast.

I had little faith in the okra coming out, but had planted two rows of it since my grandfather always grew the stuff in Oklahoma and I love it. It too, has snuck up with fat leaves and promise.  I was ecstatic.
Zucchini Flower

All the trees seem to be doing well. The apples keep blooming and are starting to look less like dead sticks and more like trees. The blueberries are still green and alive. The apricots, plum, and nectarines are getting little green leaves. And my favorite, the figs are even bearing some fruit.

The avocado trees look a little freaked out by their new surroundings, but I'm still hopeful they'll make it. They've dropped a few leaves and I think that could have been due to the strong winds we recently had.

Last night it got pretty cold and it rained, but nothing looked the worse for it. In fact, I think the rain helped.

The First Fig


  1. Figs are delicious. Also, I'm so impressed at your basil coming up from seed. I can't beg mine to do that and I'm in Virginia! Absolutely no excuse.

  2. I was shocked about the basil as well! Hopefully it will survive the heat we'll get when summer starts cooking Tucson. Thanks for commenting. (o: