Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Fast and the Furious

When the garden finally kicks in, it seems to come on with a vengeance. Everyday is an explosion of new eye candy.

Irises in the rock garden opened all at once this week.

New perennials planted last season came back strong to thrill us.

I'm racing now to get all the vegetables in. Peppers, tomatoes, celery, carrots, lettuce, onions, peas, cabbage, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, beans and squash are all in. 

White carrots are ferning out.

Strawberries and black currants are forming fruit.

Rhubarb is ready for a second picking.

And now we have the first asparagus of the season in all shapes and sizes. Everyday is truly a new delight. 

The field supervisor makes the rounds to survey my progress.

Temporary beds in the back garden were required to accommodate the over-enthusiastic potato seed order.

Planting potatoes requires far more exertion than one would think. The ground must be loose and potatoes planted deep enough (trenched is best) so you can hill them up as they grow. Hilling up means more tubers for the table.

Unfortunately, the new beds were dug into hard clay. Not the best for potatoes. I amended with sand and plenty of compost and was happy to see greenery has already broken through the topsoil. 

Also, to my surprise, several volunteers (must be TPS - true potato seeds - from last year's harvest) planted themselves amongst my onion and carrot beds.

I'm not removing them because I want to see how they'll do.

We're going to be in for quite the potato-o-rama this season. In the ground now are Purple Caribe, Russian Blues (pictured here with their intriguing purplish leaves)...

Red Pontiacs, Red Norland, Yukon Golds and Russets. In fact, I ran out of planting space and only managed to get everything in this weekend because one of my good neighbors offered up his unused beds. At the end of the season I can repay him with a share of the harvest and well-amended soil.

I always make sure that some goodies are out there for the critters too. Everyone is welcome, except maybe.... yellow jackets and mosquitos. 

There's a micro patch of corn planted for the squirrels. If they stop digging it up they'll get a wealth of corn later. 

Finch seeders are bringing gorgeous beauties to the yard daily.

And catnip meant for the field supervisor has apparently called out to some neighboring kitty interlopers. Really, the best thing about having a garden is spreading the joy around.

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