February Garden 2015

Night Winter Sky from my backyard

It has been a while since the last garden update. Garden has been neglected a bit but seems to be doing well on its own.

The one citrus plant that was healthy but has yet to bloom is blooming in full force. I did some estimation and we might have 55 limes when it is done this season. Unfortunately it is falling to the same disease as all the others. I have applied some proactive fertilizer (see the brown water on the leaves). The hope is that I can keep it healthy enough for it to fight the sickness off itself. I haven’t found a product that will treat whatever this is that is slowing killing my citrus plants.

Sickly key lime plant is still blooming

Grape vine is still dormant

We have big beautiful collards
The tomato seeds that I planted are doing well through the winter.

We are happy to have our fresh dill back.

Hopefully we won’t lose our blueberries again this year. Have not had luck with them the past two years.

My husband has chopped up our christmas tree. It is supposed to be used for mulch but I might end up composting/throwing it out because it is in the way.

My late fall project is growing in nicely. I replaced one of the gardens with sod and a lavender sensory garden. The grass is green as can be but the lavender is slow to grow.

The lavender is quite beautiful up close though.

Next up some tomatoes, citrus and hopefully blueberry crops in the spring.

What has been going on?

I know it has been a long time. Truth is, there hasn’t been too much to blog about garden wise. We have had lots of weekend trips, crazy work weekends, and miscellaneous events to keep us busy. Bottom line is the yard has been neglected and it is showing. Luckily we have so many bad yards around us due to foreclosures that the HOA doesn’t have time to bother us. This post will be long. I have 3.5 months to catch up on.
In the front yard, Carlos dug up the dead grass and replaced with nice new sod. Our butterfly garden, which was devastated by the freezes we had this year, has come back to life. All it needs is a little cleanup and 2-3 plant replacements and the front should be all good to go.
The freezes this winter also demolished the tomato crop. The garden was a big ole mess for a while. Tomatoes were dropping all over the place for months. Mostly because I was too lazy to pull them out.

From Garden

From Garden

Eventually I got around to pulling them all out to make room for spring veggies, all except one that I cut back. The last survivor is now producing new tomatoes this spring. I planted some roma tomato seeds which are growing very slowly. I got impatient and purchased 6 better boy tomato plants from a local nursery. I have bumped them up in bigger pots to prepare them for planting in one of the square foot gardens.
The Muscadine grape that I planted last fall must have went into hibernation over the winter. I thought it was dead but now it is back in full force. It will be lovely when it grows around the trellis.
I missed my rosemary and lavender garden from our old house. Recently I purchased both rosemary and lavender plants to make a new one. The plants surround the back and side of the trellis. I mulched them with pine needles purchased at Palmers Garden and Goods. All I need is the stone bench that we can’t seem to find. I can’t wait to sit on the bench and breathe in the fragrant plants on a breezy and shady afternoon. The plants were purchased at South Seminole Farm & Nursery.

From Garden

I love how huge the Borage plants have gotten in the yard. They have beautiful purple-ish blue flowers and the bees love them. Unfortunately they are taking up prime square foot garden real estate and will have to be removed. It was nice while it lasted.

From Garden

Two seasons ago I planted some carrot seeds. They grew nice long healthy greens so I decided to pull one up two months later. All that I got was an inch long carrot. Frustrated, I left them there and ignored them until recently when I wanted to make room for spring crops. What I got was monstrous genetic mutant carrots. They didn’t taste bad.

From Garden

From Garden

In addition to all the updates above, we have yet to get more than one eggplant from the two eggplant plants that are still alive in the garden but I have hope for the future. Collards and Kale are doing great. We just have to be less lazy and include them more as part of a balanced meal. Some green peppers are growing. I have never had much luck with them, maybe this is my year. Finally, the blueberries are blooming. Hopefully all my acid applications will pay off in some sweet treats!

From Garden

From Garden

From Garden

Lastly, we have some irrigation drama. We found out that in a week that we will be switched to reclaimed water for our irrigation (I thought we were already on reclaimed water). Normally this is good news because it saves precious water but in the documentation it states that it is not safe for growing food that has no removable skin (80% of what I grow). I had to turn off all sprinklers that touch my food and have been manually watering. I only hope I can keep up with the summer heat.