My Edible Garden

I've been gardening for most of my life and have been a devoted fan of organic gardening the whole time. It just makes so much more sense to work in harmony with Mother Nature than to fight her. Besides which it is better for the planet and better for our bodies. Here you can see what I'm planting and harvesting, with gardening hints and resources thrown in for good measure.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Garden Update

Buttercup squash
Has been a really busy week; I have not been feeling my best and had little energy with a crazy work schedule. The garden is also feeling the heat and some things seem to be in lull at the moment. I did get about .5" of rain on the 4th which was really nice. Not nearly enough, but nice.

All of the squashes are doing well, the Buttercup plants are growing by leaps and bounds and setting fruit. These are winter squash so won't be ready until fall.

Squash vines on the greenhouse
Here are the squash vines growing on the green house. Most of these are Buttercups plus a couple of Tromboncinno. 

The row cover in the foreground is covering a new planting of French Filet bush beans.

Amish Paste

I've been a bit disappointed with the Amish Paste tomatoes. Half the plants went under to some sort of wilt (probably verticillium) and they have only set a couple of fruit so far.

Red Burgundy Amaranth
The first planting of Red Burgundy Amaranth is blooming.

Like I said things are in a lull, probably because it's been so hot and dry. However now that the summer rains are trying to come in, the temps are down a bit and the humidity is up so things should start growing again.

Something I learned recently is that most nitrogen in the soil is bound up and not usable to the plants until liberated by micro-biotic life in the soil. If the air temp is below 50 degrees no nitrogen is released. As the temperature begins to rise more and more nitrogen is released until it peaks at about 75-80 degrees. Above 80 there is a decrease in nitrogen release, with it stopping completely around 100 degrees. This certainly explains why there is that certain point in spring, when the temps rise over 50 degrees and suddenly the garden takes off. And again why when it begins to hit 100 degrees that growth slows down, being a function as much of nutrient deficiency as of lack of moisture.


  1. Beautiful buttercup squash! That is my favorite variety for eating; hoping I get a few. Squash is very hit or miss for me between the vine borers and the powdery mildew that hits mid-summer. I'm crossing my fingers.

  2. Late summer sometimes we get powdery mildew; i'm going to try the milk sprays that are being suggested now

  3. Your squash vines on your green house look wonderful! I am not sure what to do with my vines! But I do love Buttercup squash! Interesting info about the nitrogen. Nancy

  4. Your squash really are taking over the greenhouse! May they produce many fruits for you :)

    Sorry to hear about the tomato problems. They can be frustrating at times...

  5. What will you do with your amaranth? Is it for grain or for drying or just to look pretty?

    1. I started the amaranth as a green and hadn't thought to use the seed, but these got away from me and the leaves were getting a bit big and tough so I decided to let them go to seed. We'll see how that turns out.

  6. I've noticed that lull too. Here it lasts until mid-August or so. I hung some old sheer curtains along the south side of my tomatoes (another great tip, thanks, Mary!). They haven't dropped their blossoms and look pretty happy considering it's been nearly 100 every day this week.