What’s Going on in That Vege Garden?

It’s about time for an update on that vege garden of mine. Or at least some of it. All the hot, sunny weather here is helping things to ripen more quickly, but also means I have to spend a lot of time watering. The bamboo tomato tee-pees are holding up well and have a handy side purpose: hanging the hose wand on and leaving it to water various patches of the vege garden. I just have to remember it’s on when I’m eating dinner. Food is such a distraction…

Tomato tee-pees
The tomato tee-pees.

The fruits of the bigger tomato varieties are still green at the moment, but most of the plants have been rocketing away, especially the ones along the carport. I pinched the tops out once they reached the top of the carport, which is just over 2m high.

Tomatoes reaching carport
The tomato plants reaching above the carport.

There has been an extreme amount of plant tying going on. I have 17 tomato plants, 11 of which need tying. With three main stems each, that’s 33 ties for each tying sesh. Except when I’ve been busy or slack, then it’s even worse! I ran out of material ties pretty quickly, so resorted to buying these McGregor’s soft twist ties, available at Mitre10Mega or Bunnings. I would rather not buy plant ties, but things were getting ridiculous. These twist ties can be cut with scissors, are easy to twist around the plants and are reusable. I started off with the 5mm, 5m long size, then moved to the smaller, 10m size to make them go further. Time will tell how well they hold up the fruiting plants. Some of the Amish Paste plants have blight, but I’m trying to keep it under control. The Black Krims next to them seem happy as Larry. Who is Larry anyway?

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Tomato ‘Amish Paste’.
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Tomato ‘Black Krim’.
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Tomato ‘Big Beef’.

The ‘Small Fry’ cherry tomatoes have been quite disappointing. They were pretty slow to get going and now some have blight and two have what I’m pretty sure is cucumber mosaic virus (CMV), due to the characteristics of leaf discolouration, stunted growth, and, most distinctively, shoe-string-like stems with tiny leaves. These two will be making a quick exit into the rubbish bin. Some of the cherry tomatoes have ripened and they’re not exactly the greatest in the world eating-wise either. Ah well, I’ll make sure I do more than one variety next year.

Cherry tomato 'Small Fry'
Cherry tomato ‘Small Fry’. 

One of my cucumber plants on the carport wire fence is doing very well and we have been enjoying the first cucumber in wraps and salads. They have tough, bumpy skins so need to be peeled, but they are quite tasty. The next cucumber is just about ready.

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The first cucumber.
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A cucumber on the way.

Pumpkin Corner is pretty nuts, as always. In a good way. I can hardly take a photo of it now because the pumpkins are still trying to take over the world. There are some decent-sized pumpkins growing in there, which is exciting to watch. This is the first time I’ve grown pumpkins due to The Husband’s apparent dislike of them.

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A nice Crown pumpkin.
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Pumpkin corner from the other side. The borage plant growing in there is so happy and is the most ginormous borage I’ve ever seen.

The capsicum plants are plodding along nicely. Well, I think they are. This is the first time I’ve grown capsicums too. The wee fruits have started to appear. Ooooooh.

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Capsicum ‘Purple Beauty’.
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Capsicum ‘Purple Beauty’ – the first wee fruit.

The kale forest is still alive and kicking, with only one plant gone to seed. It just keeps going! It’s like the energizer bunny. This is a good thing, as my lettuce succession planting didn’t quite pan out over the holiday period. In other words, there is currently a lettuce drought. Kale and rocket have been keeping our wraps very tasty (and nutritious). The potatoes are still gunning for it, with no signs of losing steam either.

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The kale forest, with potatoes on the left.

We have used the first leek, with plenty more to come from the garden. It went in a pie. Ah, pie. Pie, pie, PIE. I’m pretty sure pie is one of the Seven Wonders of the world. Not sure what the other six are though… Although, at this very moment they would be rosemary bread, pizza, gourmet sausages, strawberries, sorbet and chilled water. Subject to change any minute. Our favourite pie, which I’ve no doubt mentioned before, is a chicken, bacon, mushroom and leek pie. If I could only eat one pie for the rest of my life, that would be it. Pie. Now I’ve successfully made myself hungry right before bed…

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