Photo Tour of the Garden – June 2020

We thought a quick little look at what our garden looks like after a cold May and a – so far – warm and sunny June could be fun, so we decided on sharing a photo tour. The status is overall quite good, despite a few mishaps over the past few months. Crane fly larvae destroyed our expected early spinach harvest, so we had to re-sow and ended up getting a smaller-than-ideal yield due to the unavoidable bolting in early June, but a yield nonetheless! We’ve then also had to battle slugs big time, but after a few weeks of relentless killing, trapping and applying Ferramol, it seems we have the situation more or less under control. On a brighter note: pak choi is a new favorite crop. Easier, yummier and more fuss-free vegetable must be hard to come by, and we’re hooked. Note though, that just like spinach, pak choi bolts (goes to bloom) when peak summer arrives. In other words: shoot for spring and fall harvests instead. 

Now, all we would ask for is rain. Regular, solid, big rains. June has unfortunately started off very similar to how it did in 2018, which turned into a summer of drought and forest fires, as we all remember. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that doesn’t happen again this year (and let’s roll up our sleeves to make sure that doesn’t ever become the norm). Hope you’re all having a great summer so far, and that it’s green in more ways than one. And welcome to our little oasis 🙂

To read about this year’s plan for our garden and to see if we’ve kept on track (hint: we are growing a lot more peas than originally planned), check out the post Garden Plan and Sowing Schedule for 2020. And if you’re interested in getting started with growing your own food but don’t know where to start, give Vegetable Growing for Beginners a read.

The Original Garden

Box 1

Peas (Sollerön), chard, carrots and corn. All sowed/planted early-mid June, post spinach.

Box 2

Summer squash (Dark Fog), corn, calendula and cosmos. All sowed/planted mid June, post spinach.

Box 3

Tomatoes (Ida Gold, Brandywine and Red Pearl), onions, parsnips and California poppies.

Box 4

Broccoli, dill, parsley, onion, scallions and lettuce. Also pak choi until all was harvested a few weeks back. All 8 broccoli plants will be replaced by baby ones (started about 6 weeks ago) in a few weeks for fall harvest.

Box 5

Dino kale, green kale, lettuce and cornflower. All will be harvested in about 1-2 weeks (we’ll blanch and put in the freezer), and then we’ll do 12 green kale (plants started about 6 weeks ago) for the fall and winter, plus rows of spinach in between.

Box 6

Potatoes. All will be harvested in about 1-2 weeks, and then we’ll do 12 dino kale (plants started about 6 weeks ago) for the fall and winter, with rows of carrots and chard in between.

Box 7

Winter squash (Delicata Zeppelin and Sweet Reba, an acorn variety), parsnips, chard and lady phacelia.

Box 8

Heirloom pea galore! Lokförare Bergfälts jätteärt, Biskopen, Saxbo and Enviken. The two former are sugar snaps and the two latter varieties of shelling peas.

“The No Fence Boxes”

Box A

Potatoes. All will be harvested in the next week, and then replaced by 6 sweet potato plants. These are growing in pots in the greenhouse currently. We’ll build a cover so it continues to be a little greenhouse-like for this warm-loving crop.

Box B

Garlic, onions and poppies. We’ve had a minor ant infestation in this box, but hope the onions haven’t been too disturbed by their soil moving activity. Growing onions from seed is proving tricky for us though, this second year we’re attempting it – they’re not that big, unfortunately. We’ll see where it goes. If they don’t take on, we can always do all spinach here once the garlic has been harvested, and make great use of the space that way. 5 tomatoes and 1 cucumber in buckets behind the trellis.

The Hugel Beds

Bed 1

Summer squash (Dark Fog), sugar snap peas (Cascadia), parsley and dill. More dill has been sowed where it’s empty. Poppy border.

Chard. Poppy border(s).

Tomatoes (Ida Gold, Brandywine and unknown name cocktail tomato), lettuce and cornflower.

Sugar snap peas (Cascadia) and grey peas (Märta and Rättvik). Cornflower border.

Bed 2

Dino kale and green kale. We’ll harvest most of this to put in the freezer, and replace with more baby kale, lettuce and pak choi over the course of the next month.

Grey peas (Rättvik) and green/purple beans.

Summer squash (Dark Fog).

Winter squash (Delicata Zeppelin and Sweet Reba) and cornflower.

The Patches

Patch 1

Carrots, parsnips, green beans and California poppies.

Patch 2

Late summer potatoes, random Jerusalem artichokes that we weren’t expecting (we must have missed a few when harvesting) and leftover squash plants that we popped down where no potatoes came up.

The Greenhouse

Cucumber (Moneta + Beth Alpha), eggplant (Diamond), pointed bell pepper (Ferenc Tender), yellow bell pepper (unknown variety) and tomatoes (San Marzano).

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2 thoughts on “Photo Tour of the Garden – June 2020

  1. You have expanded your garden! We had a bad slug year here too. Usually we like the garter snakes to look after them, but this year they were late and not as many as we like. Do your San Marzano and Brandywine tomatoes ripen on the plant? They are slow for us, but may be, your longer summer days help?

    1. Yes, indeed we have! And we couldn’t be more excited about all the extra space. It definitely makes it easier to take more lightly upon things not going our way, and be a little more experimental 🙂 Interesting about the garter snakes. The slugs that we struggle with are an invasive species, not native to Sweden – in other words, they don’t have any natural predators and breed like crazy. I believe they’ve come by ship, somehow, from the southern parts of Europe. It’ll be our first year growing San Marzano (keeping them in the greenhouse) so I’m not sure, but with Brandywine I’d say about 50% have time to ripen on the plant. It depends on the type of summer we have, of course, but that was the case last year, which was fairly normal weather wise and didn’t offer up an unusually warm and sunny August, for example. Hope you’re all doing well and that your garden is off to a good start!

      /Sophia

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