Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Grow-vember update

After a slow start we are kicking into high gear. Still a lot behind last year in some ways but things are looking up and this is looking like the most productive year yet. I am also impressed with the resident population of pollinators and predators meaning I haven't had to spray much at all.

Various types of mint family, getting only a few hours sun. They grow leggy but not out of control, and large leaves.

I harvested my garlic - a bit early. The tubs had dried out and they were wilting, making me think they were ready. So I pulled them a bit small but they should be nice and potent.

In their place I have planted marketmore cucumbers on the left, zucchini on the right, plus some pole beans. The sugar snaps at the back are getting bigger, hopefully I'll get at least one good harvest out of them before it gets too hot. They get shaded from early afternoon here so that should keep them going a bit longer.

In front is a pot of carrots.

Flowers starting to open on parsley. More pot cucumbers and beans, and beets. Trying various supports for them to see which works best.

Fence peas, not doing too badly.

Broad beans putting out some good sized pods. They lasted into summer last year, but eventually will succumb to fungal problems. I wonder if I should top them to encourage set on the flowers/beans they already have.

Onions... a bit of a fail. I'm going to grow green manure in this strip over winter and then convert it back into container space - the soil is pretty much taken over by the nearby tree's roots and not useful for growing much (other than legumes).

Swiss chard in a pot. Gets limited sun here, so once established I'll probably move it to get more sun.

Miner's lettuce has been great but is not liking the heat - red sorrel is bolting. Regular sorrel is in second year and still no flower stalk.

Pot lineup. Shallots should be ready soon.

Money maker and principe borghese. I haven't grown a bush/determinate tomato before, it's interesting to see how many trusses it has all at once.

Corn bed. The stunted one was transplanted but it is going to make it. Some bush beans in between (two didn't come up) and in the middle, wee b little pumpkin - wondering if I should thin to one.

Potted peas. Used the wrong support, a more traditional cage would have worked better.

Herb tower - cut back and dried the oregano. I have an idea to hook this up to the irrigation system, will do that in summer.

Lemon/lime, raspberry and cherry tomatoes, jimmy nardellos in front.

Bees are loving the lemon and raspberry flowers.

Had a bit of a setback with the blueberry - had some rust infection. I trimmed most of the affected leaves and sprayed it with copper, will see how it goes. Will only get a modest blueberry harvest this year.

I up-potted the strawberry into a pot twice as large, managed to do it without disturbing the roots. I suspect all the lush green growth is from the dynamic lifter, or maybe that's just how second year strawberries look.

Kohlrabi still not ready. But the bulbs are increasing in size.

Looks like a success for these radishes, I wish I'd planted more. It was in straight potting mix / compost and no fertiliser - plump radishes, not too much foliage. Spinach on the right.

Main bed. The capsicums and eggplants are still small. Might give them a liquid feed weekly to help them out until they are bigger. The soil should have plenty of nutrients.

Bed potatoes and bagged potatoes, the latter of which has been topped up. I don't want to hill the bed potatoes, just keep them well mulched. I want to see what kind of lateral growth I can get out of them.

This small shaded bed is doing pretty well. I know I can at least do kale, pak choy and swiss chard here as long as I give them a good start as seedlings.

The peas here were pulled, I have directed sowed cucumber seeds instead. The peas failed because the peat pots didn't break down in ground and they became root bound inside. The toilet roll ones on the other hand worked great. Lesson: don't use peat pots, unless what you are growing has an aggressive taproot system that can break through. Growing beans up the stakes in the side.

Have learned that buk choy really prefers winter, doesn't thrive in warmer weather and bolts early. Pak choy on the other hand doing great.

Strawberries on the balcony. I didn't add much fertiliser to this potting mix, seeing if I can get strawberries without an overabundance of foliage (which really became a problem last year, causing the pots to dry out quickly in this exposed place on hot/windy days).

The lineup of hot chillis, now planted out. As mentioned earlier the buk choy didn't do well here during the warm weather, although I did get one good meal out of them. Because of the high angle of the sun as we head into summer, these pots only get sun from lunchtime on, so will be interesting to see how they do - on the flip side, in autumn as the angle drops again they should be getting more and more sun for their second flush.

Balcony shots of how the garden is coming along. It's the time of the year when the planning and work start paying off.

Thanks for reading!

1 comment:

  1. No problem, my pleasure. That radish is mine!