The Garden Of 2015 Begins With Hard Work In January And February (Page One)
Come on and sit a spell (or pull weeds!)
This year is our first with the raised gardens . So much easier to garden when we can get to everything so easy! We put in 25 yards of new "vegetable dirt" and further we decided to put perlite into the soil mix to assure we did not end up with hard as brick soil... It works but Paul had to dig in almost 80 cubic feet (2 1/2 yards) of perlite into the soil by hand!
Did You Know? -
Perlite is a unique volcanic mineral which expands to about 13 times its original volume when it is heated to a temperature of approximately 1600 F (871C). During the heating process, the mineral particles pop like popcorn and form a granular, snow-white material that is so light in weight it weighs only about 5 to 8 pounds per cubic foot (80-128 kg/cubic meter).
Each particle of perlite is comprised of tiny closed air cells or bubbles. The surface of each particle is covered with tiny cavities which provide an extremely large surface area. These surface cavities trap moisture and make it available to plant roots. In addition, because of the physical shape of each particle or perlite, air passages are formed in the growing media thereby providing excellent aeration. Fertilizer appropriate to the plants being grown should be added. Horticultural perlite is available in several different grades. The coarse sand size has been used for many general gardening and horticultural applications, but the finer grades work best when used outdoors.
Advantages of Horticultural Perite
• Improves aeration and drainage
• Makes moisture and nutrients readily available to plants
• Is inorganic and does not deteriorate.
• Has an essentially neutral pH of 6.5 to 7.5.
• Serves as an insulator to reduce extreme soil temperature fluctuations.
• Is sterile and free of weeds and disease.
• Is clean, odorless, lightweight, and safe to handle.
Spread the perlite on the surface and then get the spade and go to town
We dug down about 12 inches to assure the soil would not compact
We put in transplanted onions on either side just to see how the soil was doing
The cauliflower was planted February 15th and is beginning to grow nicely
It Is Now Mid February And We Are Beginning To Plant
We are beginning to plant in the newly raised gardens.
Each bed is 4' by 25'... Side wall is 5' by 30' and back wall is 3' by 70'
Yeah Yeah It Is The First Of March!
The Cauliflower is looking good
Sore hands from diggin in the perlite
The blueberries are looking pretty good
The cages are up and ready to receive their tomatoes!
Tomato Mania Day! March 6th!
Roger's Gardens in Corona Del Mar
Did You Know? - Botanically, a tomato is a fruit: the ovary, together with its seeds, of a flowering plant. However, the tomato has a much lower sugar content than other edible fruits, and is therefore not as sweet. Typically served as part of a salad or main course of a meal, rather than at dessert, it is considered a vegetable for most culinary uses.
One exception is that tomatoes are treated as a fruit in home canning practices: they are acidic enough to process in a water bath rather than a pressure cooker as vegetables require. Tomatoes are not the only food source with this ambiguity: green beans, eggplants, cucumbers, and squashes of all kinds (such as zucchini and pumpkins) are all botanically fruits, yet cooked as vegetables.
This dispute has led to legal speculation in the United States. In 1887, U.S. tariff laws that imposed a duty on vegetables, but not on fruits, caused the tomato's status to become a matter of legal importance.
The U.S. Supreme Court settled this controversy on 10 May 1893, by declaring that the tomato is a vegetable, based on the popular definition that classifies vegetables by use, that they are generally served with dinner and not dessert (Nix v. Hedden (149 U.S. 304)).
To Roger's Gardens
Hundreds of different tomatoes to select from
Getting loaded up
I think I can.... I think I can
Greg is also shopping for that special tomato
We Are Off To Cucina For Lunch
To lunch at Cucina Restaurant in Newport Center
Love the cauliflower soup!
Paul gets the squash sandwich... Delicious
p.s. Jon got the other half of this sandwich and loved it
Truffle fries are to die for!
Racotta cheese stuffed squash blossoms
These are going home to visit Jon
It's Time To Plant So Homeward We Go!
In their flats and ready to get planted - 24 large tomatoes and 9 cherry tomatoes
The cherry tomatoes are along the east block wall
Did You Know? - A cherry tomato is a very small variety of tomato that has been cultivated since at least the early 1800s and thought to have originated in Peru and Northern Chile.
Cherry tomatoes range in size from a thumbtip up to the size of a golf ball, and can range from being spherical to slightly oblong in shape. Although usually red, yellow, green and black varieties also exist. The more oblong ones often share characteristics with plum tomatoes, and are known as grape tomatoes.
Each one gets his own little cage
Tomato fertilizer and a little water gives them a good start
The cages are along the east wall and get all of the afternoon sun!
Paul re-reads it every morning
In order to may oration early, we planted only two fingers plus the north wall
This row has cauliflower, onions, peas, string beans, peppers, swiss chard and some squash
The cauliflower is looking good!
It's Now Mid March
Our first tomato is growing like a weed
Almost everything is planted
Sue's collection of Cherry tomatos
Bush beans are coming right along