It's early Summer in the veg patch and all is in flower, tendril and hopeful little fruits. We had a wet, cool Spring so I'm relieved to get the Summer plants in finally, in place to soak up the sun. Optimistic, I know... but so far we've noticed that our backyard gets a good 15 degrees warmer than the "official" SF temps. Nighttime is a little cooler, but I'm hopeful for our first Summer growing food at this new home. And, really, what is gardening other than hope and dirty fingernails?
Here's what's doing these days:
fuzzy, beautiful Blue Borage. As you may know, the flowers taste just like cucumbers. I need to make a big salad and throw some in.
view of the vegetable garden, spilling over in flower, mostly purple-ish right now.
sweet peas - 'Taffy Swirls' and 'North Shore' - what an amazing, delicate fragrance. I'm also growing 'April in Paris' which has a more subdued (but beautiful) appearance, but the BEST fragrance of them all. Just dreamy.
the return of the chicken wire. Or shall we say toddler/kitty wire? Out with the favas, and in with all kinds of squashes, both summer and winter. Some will trail and some will climb up the arches or mesh walls.
here's a holdover from Spring. These fennel bulbs are begging to be eaten NOW. I need to find the right recipe or maybe just pickle 'em. Anyone ever pickled fennel? Note the little babies re-growing from the site of earlier harvests. I love that.
purple tomatillos, finally "doing something." They were flowering like crazy forever, and now the flowers are faded and the stem "petal things" (I never took botany) have elongated and inflated as you see here. Tiny little tomatillos are enlarging inside. Super interesting to watch this process unfold for the first time. If we get fruits on most of the flowers, we are going to be in SALSA HEAVEN. Which is the best type of heaven, if you ask me.
yellow pear tomatoes. My bazillion tomato plants are jammin along, setting fruit like crazy. Whee! tomatoes in San Francisco!
Thai chili plant - 'orange fogo'. I'm growing a couple different types, in various settings (in ground, potted, etc.). I admit this is kinda wishful thinking for San Francisco's unpredictable summers, especially this cool year. But, I would just totally pass out with happiness if I could grow some peppers. Even just moderate spiciness would make my day.
mexican sour gherkins, off and running now. I started them from seeds WAY too early, so they limped along all Spring. But now! Now, they're climbing and setting tiny fruit all over. As I mentioned in every hopeful Garden Update, these will emerge as tiny fruits that look like watermelons but are really cucumbers. Got that?
and now for something I literally have nothing to do with: the blackberry bramble. Well, I guess I could have ripped them out (heh. anyone who's tried knows how futile this is.) but I think I actually encouraged lots of fruiting by hacking the bramble back a bit in early Spring. You know, so I could walk back there. So much for that. The berry beast pounded its angry chest and pushed out 5 canes for each I cut back. But those canes are currently covered in flowers, baby berries and happy bees. Oh, OK. Twist my arm.
...and, the artichoke patch, interplanted with three types of sunflowers, from short in front to tall in back. The artichokes are generally doing great, growing like mad. I'm a bit worried about the plant in front, though, which keeps curling one or two leaves inward versus out. The interweb mentions some curling disease accompanied by black spots, which we do not have. Not sure what's going on here -- anyone, anyone?