Thursday, January 31, 2008

My veggie patch (or, how I learned about the birds and the bees)

As I mentioned here, I was having some problems with my zucchinis.

Since then I transplanted them from the kiddie pool they were in to a garden bed that I've attempted to revitalise. Alas, the zucchinis were growing no larger there - until I discovered what everyone else probably already knows about zucchinis; that there are two types of flowers, males and females, and the female flowers have to be pollinated by the male flowers. The ones I'd picked before hadn't been pollinated, so never grew beyond that size. So obviously, with no bees in my garden, I was going to have to do it myself. So I've been out there at 7am some mornings handpollinating them just to make sure it happens.

Hence, we are finally growing some decent sized zucchinis, now that I know what I'm doing.

Passionfruits have a rather amusing history in my family, but here's the one I planted in just December, and has grown from half a foot to this in late January. It's already flowering, so I may even squeeze out a fruit or two before autumn hits.

We were given this strawberry plant for Christmas. It was tiny then, just a little seedling, so we may just get some strawberries out of it this season.

We needed a climber for the side of the garage that doesn't need too much sunlight. These pepinos are doing nicely there.

Then there's the capsicums. For a while they were too crowded in, so didn't do much, but recently they've gone mad and we're doing quite well out of it.


And the beans are now taking over. They look fantastic up against the bare fence. Particularly since I cleared the fence to actually give them some room to grow.


And finally, my lettuces are doing great - using our old used coffee grounds we've had no problems with snails or slugs.

The saddest thing was that almost the entire worm farm died on a particularly hot day (drowned in their own urine - what a way to go) and the same happened when I transplanted my pumpkin from a pot to the garden (it just got obliterated by the sun). I've since got more worms, so the farm is back up and running, though my pumpkin still needs a lot of healing before it'll even look like fruiting. Of course by then it'll probably be too late.

Still, I'm pretty happy overall. More to come on my gardening adventures.

5 comments:

Alicia said...

What the heck is a pepino? Pepino is the spanish word for cucumber, and that doesnt look at all like a cucumber.

I say you start growing your own strange shaped vegetables like this: http://www.mentalfloss.com/blogs/archives/11618#more-11618

mr jones and me said...

pepinos are little fruits that apparently taste like a melon. I'd never heard of them either, but most climbers need a lot of sun, and I wanted something that was productive, and so pepinos were pretty much it. the good news is, it's an awesome word to say. try it out: pepino. pepino. pepino.

Alicia said...

you just like the fact that it has a pepe in the name.

theysaywordscanbleed said...

that is such a cool collection of plants in your garden.

gina said...

i'm very envious of your garden since it's winter here. i miss growing my veggies.

here's a tip for you...if you tire of pollinating the zucchini's yourself, you can take the flowers and cook them...i know you are either a vegan or vegetarian, so you may or may not eat eggs. if you do, just take about 8 eggs, scramble them up, add some salt and pepper and put in some flowers....cook it up and you've got yourself a frittata.