Tag Archives: peas

Garden in April, Eastern NC, Zone 7b

April 4, 2016

Garden at the beginning of March

Nieto Photography 2016Garden at the beginning of AprilNieto Photography 2016Sooooo much has changed already! As we walk through the garden, you can see to the right, the fencing has been taken down and in its place is a big mound of mulch. That mound of mulch is one of our many potato patches. Behind it are some brassicas I transplanted from the greenhouses. Nieto Photography 2016To the left of that are some winter squash and nasturtiums that were transplanted from the greenhouses.Nieto Photography 2016 Nieto Photography 2016As we continue, there is another patch of brassicas. Nieto Photography 2016Sorry for the blurr…These were transplanted from the brassicas that overwintered on accident (brassicas I planted and had planned on transplanting last fall but never got around to it). I am definitely doing this every year! I put a shade cloth over them to protect them from bugs but nothing to protect them from the cold. It seemed as though they died but they came back this spring! I thinned them out and planted them in the cover to the left. I am going to transplant the rest this week.  Nieto Photography 2016Between the two covered areas, I planted peas. they are just starting to push through the mulch. Nieto Photography 2016 And the purple sprouting broccoli under the cover to the right are doing well (as well as some cilantro that overwintered). The next section has some more potato patches, some lettuce I transplanted from the greenhouses, and boxes. Nieto Photography 2016In the boxes, I have some eggplant and tomatoes, transplanted from the greenhouses, some overwintered spinach and carrots, and more potatoes! Nieto Photography 2016We moved the old chicken tractor (we grew tomatoes on this last year) past the boxes and are going to grow different types of melons over it this year. Nieto Photography 2016To the right of the chicken tractor is another patch of brassicas aaaaaaaaaand…another potato patch! This is the first one I planted and it has started sprouting!Nieto Photography 2016 Nieto Photography 2016

As far as our perennial vegetables and fruits, more raspberries are popping up in our raspberry patch (we need to go ahead and put up supports), Nieto Photography 2016strawberries are popping through the mulch (and flowering!), Nieto Photography 2016 Nieto Photography 2016the blueberries are being polinated, Nieto Photography 2016the new strawberry plants (June bearing) are becoming established, Nieto Photography 2016the asparagus are popping up (newly planted bed!), Nieto Photography 2016 Nieto Photography 2016and the trees are setting fruit!Nieto Photography 2016(peaches) Nieto Photography 2016(apples – can’t tell if it has really set fruit or not…) Nieto Photography 2016(pears)

I finished most of my TO DO list for March (plant potatoes, plant all of the greenhouses, plant cool weather seeds). All we lack to do is expand the chicken runs. For April, the TO DO list is pretty straight forward. PLANT, PLANT, PLANT and then plant some more! Our last frost date is April 21st. I have planted everything early because we have had an incredibly warm spring so far. Of course this week, some of our nights are dropping below freezing. Wonderful. I am going to cover the transplants with tops of milk jugs and hope for the best!

What are you doing in your garden? Are you harvesting already? We are harvesting some PSB and spinach here and there but mainly just waiting. Nieto Photography 2016There is SOOOO much work to be done! Always. Happy Gardening! 🙂
Check out what others are harvesting at Our Happy Acres today!

Harvest Monday

October 19, 2015

We harvested more green beans, raspberries, and tomatoes this week. We also harvested more fall green beans, garden peas, and carrots. As we were cleaning up before the first frost of the season, we found some potatoes and a cucumber!Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015

We had our first frost Sunday so Saturday we cleared out all of the tomatoes and beans.Nieto Photography 2015Tomatoes were on either side of this old chicken tractor. Nieto Photography 2015After the tomatoes were cleared out, compost was added. Now the ground is ready for next spring! Nieto Photography 2015The chickens love when we clean out the garden! Nieto Photography 2015(Last of the tomatoes!)

We ate the last of our squash this week. Sad day 😦 I hope one day I will learn how to grow summer and winter squash. It is our favorite and the squash bugs won’t let us get more than a handful of either each year. We cooked the last two butternut squash for our pumpkin baked oatmeal this week and next. After Halloween, pumpkin patches will give away their pumpkins and we will be set for the year (and so will the chickens!). We’ll have to survive for the next couple of weeks 🙂

This upcoming week, we will be harvesting sweet potatoes, putting up more hoop houses, and covering the rest of our fall/winter crops. Busy, busy! Check out what other gardeners are up to at Our Happy Acres.

 

Harvest Monday

October 12, 2015

First, some pics from last week. Here is the damage to the coop. I will not show you the damage to our flock (you’re welcome). Nieto Photography 2015Raccoons ripped the door clean off!

On a lighter note, we had a more varied harvest this week. We had our normal tomatoes, raspberries, and green beans. We also harvested some carrots, celery, our first peas, and cucumbers this week!Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015This week, we boarded up the coop to keep the raccoons out. Since the chickens did not have a chicken door to go in and out of the run, we opened the big door and let them free range a couple of days. They ate into a watermelon a bit so we went ahead and harvested it. Thankfully, it was very sweet 🙂 It’s nice to get a late watermelon (we aren’t as excited in September when we are eating them every day)!Nieto Photography 2015My husband put up a new wall on the side of the coop and an overhang. For some reason, that side of the coop alone has been rotting over the past three years. Raccoons had already ripped a hole into another part of it previously but were (thankfully) unsuccessful at gaining access.

I put the shingles on the overhang this past week (quite the feat for this 24week pregnant old lady!) and painted the first coat of paint. I am going to paint the second coat on the wall this upcoming week.

I also need to re-cover my brassicas (uncovered because of high winds of Joaquin), plant some more greens and root veggies, harvest, and spread compost this week. I am having the hardest time getting everything done now that we’re doing school again. The kids concentrate better in the morning so that is when we do school but most of my energy is gone by 1pm, when we’re done with school, so gardening as gone by the wayside. 😦

Check out what other gardeners are harvesting at Our Happy Acres 🙂

Garden in October, Eastern NC, Zone 7b

October 1, 2015

Beginning of SeptemberNieto Photography 2015Beginning of OctoberNieto Photography 2015At first glance, the garden at the beginning of September and the beginning of October looks pretty much the same. I have cleared out a few patches, and we now have hoops up but other than that, nothing looks like it has changed much. Until you glance to the left side… the weeds are trying to creep into the garden and take over! We’ll have to take care of that this month!!!

I am still growing brassicas to transplant, though time is running out to do so. The covered seedlings are doing better than the uncovered ones (surprise, surprise).

Nieto Photography 2015Our late-season butternut squash are getting bigger. I am skeptical they will have enough time to size up fully though. Our first fall frost is in middle/late October. At the very least, I’ll let them grow as big as possible so the chickens can have a treat. Nieto Photography 2015Walking through the garden, you can see how pitiful our tomato plants look. We are still harvesting about 1/2 a gallon each day but my OCD self can’t stand the ugly so I am clearing out the tomato patches whenever I get a chance.Nieto Photography 2015Under our covers, we have broccoli that is growing well. I know there will be no fall harvest but if I can keep them alive throughout the winter, maybe an early spring harvest is possible. I am playing with ideas on how to have a fall harvest of cabbage and broccoli (since I am unable to start them indoors).Nieto Photography 2015And cabbage…Nieto Photography 2015Next to the covered brassicas, we have our fall beans that are producing like MAD.Nieto Photography 2015And our fall peas. The kids said they saw some that were ready to harvest. I’ll have to go check it out. We look forward to fresh peas each spring and fall!Nieto Photography 2015As far as fruit goes, we are harvesting about 3 cups or so of raspberries every other day. Nieto Photography 2015A few strawberries here and there…Nieto Photography 2015And we have a few late-season watermelons. I am not sure how they are going to do but if we can keep the critters out, we’ll see 🙂 Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015We also have some celery we have been growing all summer. The plan was to have them shaded by the tomato plants growing all around them. It seems to have worked! I am going to harvest most of the celery this week but it will grow back. These are celery plants I transplanted from a stump of store-bought celery. Nieto Photography 2015 Oh! And the sweet potatoes! They have bounced back from the deer attacks. They are looking great! We just finished the last of our garden potatoes and are looking forward to harvesting our sweet potatoes this month!Nieto Photography 2015Chickens

The chickens are right in the middle of moulting so we are only getting an egg every other day or so. We are eating a lot of oatmeal as we patiently wait for their feathers to grow back. This month, we harvested 58 eggs, our lowest number for the whole year. January was our previous low, with only 61 eggs. I am glad we have kept up with our egg harvests this year. It has been very interesting to see the fluctuations and the reasons behind them. Seeing it on paper helps me be more determined to eat with the seasons and not just buy eggs when we feel like it.

Our TO DO list for October includes:

  • Harvesting beans, peas, tomatoes, raspberries, strawberries, and maybe some watermelon
  • Clearing out the tomatoes
  • Planting more leafy greens and root veggies to eat throughout the winter and early spring
  • Spreading more compost over the whole garden
  • Cutting down old raspberry canes
  • Transplanting new raspberry canes

What does your garden look like at the beginning of October? Are you attempting a fall/winter garden? Any tips for me?

Garden in September, Eastern NC, Zone 7b

September 2, 2015

Beginning of AugustNieto Photography 2015Beginning of SeptemberNieto Photography 2015The most noticeable difference between the beginning of August and the beginning of September is the lack of sunflowers. However, there are many more differences, if you look a bit closer. For one, we have electric fencing all around the garden, to deter the raccoons and groundhogs.

Walking through the garden, to the left, I have more brassica seedlings sizing up under shade cloth. Nieto Photography 2015(planted 2 weeks ago) Nieto Photography 2015(broccoli planted mid-July. may transplant these next week)

To the right, there is the former potato patch with one struggling winter squash. Nieto Photography 2015Further to the right is the former sunflower patch with some leftover watermelon and cantaloupe plants. I need to put some caging over them to protect them from the crows.Nieto Photography 2015Moving on is the former cabbage patch (with some volunteer tomatoes). I have tried planting carrots and peas here. The carrots are going to be replanted but the peas are trying to poke through. I assume it was just too hot for the carrots to sprout but I can’t figure out why the peas did not germinate well. I planted peas elsewhere in the garden that are doing great. This spot has more shade but not an extreme amount and both places have plenty of manure and compost. Conundrum…Nieto Photography 2015Moving along, in the former melon patch, I am planting all of my leafy greens (spinach, lettuce, kale) for the fall. To the left and right of this patch, are my ugly (but still producing) tomato plants.Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015(still getting about a gallon of tomatoes/day)

I have some boxes that are empty right now. I will plant brassicas in half of them and carrots and beets in the other half shortly. To the left of the boxes are the strawberry patches and the raspberry patch. Strawberries are trickling in (they do better in the spring). Nieto Photography 2015The raspberries give us a wonderful treat in the fall! I need to prune all of the raspberry canes that produced this year. I also need to replant ALL of the MANY raspberry shoots that have popped up everywhere! I haven’t decided where I want them though…Nieto Photography 2015(at the top of the photo, outside of the trellises and even outside of the fencing – raspberry shoots everywhere!) Nieto Photography 2015 (We get a nice handful each (all 8 of us) every other day – not too shabby 🙂 ) Nieto Photography 2015(more just starting to form)

To the far right of the boxes is the old potato patch and my daughter’s old garden (she ripped it up at the end of August – she was tired of harvesting so everything was rotting). OH! And the tunnels! Don’t want to forget the tunnels! The former broccoli and kale beds (under tunnels) house beautiful purple beans currently (as well as some melon plants).Nieto Photography 2015Under the tree, there is quite the hodge-podge.Nieto Photography 2015(another round of beans to the left, flowering cilantro to the right, a cucumber plant in front of the tree…and in the bottom of the photo – our fall peas!)

This was a new section. Earlier this summer, we ripped up tarp that was laid here years ago and put down chicken manure and wood shavings from when we cleaned out the coop.  (all of the dark mulch is where the tarp was ripped up)DSC_8441I was not going to plant in it until spring but I was running out of room when it was time to plant more peas/beans so I gave it a shot. Everything is doing well here (the beans to the left were just planted a couple of weeks ago). The peas are ready to be trellised.Nieto Photography 2015At the end of the garden, we have the sweet potato patch (partially eaten) and the (other) former sunflower patch. Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015(sweet potato blooms are a good sign though, right? 🙂 )

I will harvest the sweet potatoes sometime in October, around the first frost. I am not expecting as many sweet potatoes as last year but I will have about 13? or so varieties as compared to last year’s one. We are going to taste test these, decide which ones we want, and will save many for slips for next year.

Trees

The trees seem to be doing well. They are growing every year. The ones in the mulch grow better than the ones in grass. However, still no fruit. I don’t know what I can do to remedy this. I am going to just keep adding compost around the trunks, like I do with the rest of the garden, continue to cover them with mulch as we are able, and be patient. Maybe one day we will not have to buy fruit at the store! (the dream)

Chickens

We actually harvested MORE eggs in August than June or July! I am pretty sure it is because some of our spring-hatched chicks have started laying. I do not see any red combs but there are some eggs that are significantly smaller than the rest (our other hens are 2yo) and our older hens are moulting so that would be the only logical reason we are getting slightly more.

Since the children do such a great job taking care of the baby chicks, I told them I would pay them once their chicks started laying (after taking out the cost of feed). So now, we are keeping up with how many eggs we are collecting each day AND how many small eggs we are collecting. I’m excited for them – we’ve had such a hard time keeping chicks alive (btwn snakes, foxes, other chickens, and bad mamas leaving them out in the rain… 😦 )Nieto Photography 2015As a matter of fact, our latest batch of chicks (and last for this year) is not fairing well either. Of the 5 hatched out, one was killed by other chickens before we got a chance to separate them. This past week, one was taken by a snake, one was found dead in the coop one morning, and the two left are sluggish most of the day. I am not expecting them to make it but don’t know what’s going on! We have lost 1/2 of the chicks we have hatched out this year 😦

The older chickens are doing a great job being our soil manufacturers, though. This is the first year I have been able to cover the whole garden with chicken compost from the run! Exciting 🙂Nieto Photography 2015What does your garden look like that the beginning of September? Are you able to plant a fall/winter garden? What do you use for protection for your plants during the winter? Are you drowning in weeds? Have you given up? Check out backtoedenfilm.com and see how many people around the world are gardening with minimal weeding and watering!