Tuesday, 28 August 2012

The Other Plants and the 'VISITORS'.

In addition to numerous developments in the Pepper area of my garden, the 'Other Plants' are doing just as well. Some photos:
 The Bumbershoot, old blossom receding to make room for the rest of them... Check out all of the bumbershoots-to-be up near the top!
 The Strawberries (which vine-like fingers keep reaching into every available bit of soil) and the Broad Leaf Thing, which seems happier where it receives a little less sun.
And the Rubber Plant, blooming happily and spreading as well!

And yes, though there have been numerous butterflies, moths, spiders, bees, wasps, hummingbirds, little birds, crows, ants, earwigs, beetles, centipedes, ladybugs, aphids, and other creatures that have visited my garden, I have managed to get some pictures to share with you. First off:

The Red Eyed Moth.

Not too fascinating I agree, but it's neat and it let me get close:

 Neat little fellow; I like his antennae. 

Next up, we have:

The Oregano Frog

On August 25th, First appearance:

 Saw the little fellow hopping around outside my plants last night as well (August 27th) and then today when I popped outside to take some pictures for today's Garden Chronicles, I see this:

Seems that he likes it here! Besides the fact that I now live in fear of accidentally stepping on him (or her, I have no idea) sometime, it's really neat to have a frog hanging out in my garden!

©reated by ŊetHerŊøte  

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

The Cilantro Casualty

No, it's not really as bad as it sounds--besides, they are grown to be picked right? Right?

...Anyway, back on the 17th of August when all of the plants had their second of a few recent configurations due to (this time) an appointment for 'the dwelling' that involved a long hose running straight under the deck where I have the peppers and the herbs sitting, one of the Cilantro had found its way into and around one of the peppers, and promptly snapped right off and hung there triumphantly. I snagged it, brought it indoors, and pondered. What I wound up doing was hanging it from the cupboard handle just above the sink (thing is long, wouldn't free hang anywhere else and those are the cupboards that I use the least) and left it to dry for a few days before I used it in a spaghetti sauce (that was yesterday, the 21 of August). Indeed, but not before I took a picture of it (alright a few pictures of it) after it came in from the outside world.

The main reason--besides the fact that I appear to be a picture freak--that I decided to document this is because this particular strand of Cilantro is the perfect specimen when it comes to having almost all of the Cilantro's stages shown in order of progression. Check it out:

The Breakdown:

Stage 1: Cilantro Broad Leaves--Chinese Parsley Style

 Stage 2: Cilantro Skinny Dill Looking Leaves

Stage 3 & 4: Cilantro Steadily Becoming Coriander after the Flowers Recede

Having sampled all of the bits of said Cilantro strand, I can tell you that the flowers are tangy and somewhat sweet (I can see why they are a delicacy. Have I said that before? o.0?), the seeds (while green, anyway) are a sharp and gritty kind of taste, like black pepper but less intense if you will--and the Cilantro leaves, both the dill-looking ones and the parsley-looking ones, are a bitter and encompassing medium-mild spice flavor. I chopped the whole damn thing up and put it in my sauce nevertheless, and it was delicious!

©reated by ŊetHerŊøte 

Thursday, 16 August 2012

The Comparison Post

Part I: The Tomatoes

As of the 13th of August:
 This photo was taken before the second time I gently pruned away the yellowing and dead leaves from the bottom of the stalks. I am not sure exactly why they have been doing this--I thought it was over watering at first, but they suffer when I don't water them as much as I do (they get twice the quantity of any other plants save the Bumbershoot, the hanging plants or the large Jalapeno and two big Kung Pao) so I decided to go with another avenue. I borrowed some of my mom's plant food and gave each stalk a few drips and then watered them lightly, trying to see if it would help. The reason I decided to go this route was because I thought that perhaps it was a nutrient deficiency in the soil, and I figured it couldn't hurt because most of the plants are now producing fruit.
 And oh, how they produce! Tis marvelous!
This photo is one of my favorites because the composition is somehow pleasing to me; it was taken looking skyward at the tallest of one of the fruit bearing tomatoes.

As of the 16th of August:
The tomatoes as of today; growing very well and reaching up beyond their previous height even now... The bottoms have been shedding their leaves as the tops grow, and I rarely break off any of the lower branches unless there is a new bud beginning just at the top of the dying branch, which is occurring more and more often. That tall sillouette on the left? Yeah, that's a tomato. I know.

Part II: The Other Plants

 The Broad Leaf Thing and the Strawberries. The strawberries gave us about ten berries before they stopped producing completely; lately they seem quite content to spread all down the pedestal with their little creepers and try to take root in my Broad Leaf plant. I don't let them, of course--but my my they just don't stop trying, the tenacious tendrils.
The first bloom on the Bumbershoot!

As of the 16th of August:

 The Broad Leaf Thing, the Strawberries and the Bumbershoot.
 Didn't take long for the first bloom of the Bumbershoot to cease its show...
...But it appears there is so much more to come!!

©reated by ŊetHerŊøte

Budding, Blooming and Bolting

Let's start off with a slightly expanded review of what I just updated in Grow-A-Garden Chronicles:

Back on the 10th of August, I was the 'Harvester Of Basil' yet again, and made what has become somewhat of a favorite (so much so that I bloody well eat it all before I take a picture to post here, honestly how could I? -OM NOM NOM-) with my significant other and I: Bruschetta. If you are unsure what that is, all the more reason for me to make it again sometime soon and get the recipe up here... Anything like that moulded to be gluten free is worth it, for sure. But basically, it is Tomatoes, Basil, Olive Oil, Sun dried Tomatoes, Salt, Pepper and Devour on a slice of Rice bread with some mozzarella or other white cheese. Quick and divine, I tell you.

ANYWAY that is what became the fate of the Basil that filled the bowl, this picture is of the third and final Basil plant just before I harvested it for the second time since they were ready:
A neat memory of note: The fellow upstairs (my landlord) had his family over while I was harvesting this (they've been camping out in the backyard here) and he asked me what it was that I was picking. I told him, and asked him if he wanted to try one; he said no, but then I asked if he wanted to smell them after we spoke more about what I would be using said Basil for. After smelling the fragrant leaves in the bowl, he promptly took one and nibbled on it, and said 'Woah!' and took it upstairs. ^.^ Neat!

On the 13th of August, I went picture crazy again:

These are the Peppers (and the few herbs that you can see in the background)
Jalapeno, Kung Pao and Bell varieties.
 1/3 Oregano; showing the first signs of bolting (see the buds?)
 2/3 Oregano; showing the least signs of bolting. It has resided in the back, gotten less sun and more water than its counterparts--it is also the only one in its original container and therefore has no drainage.
 Oregano 3/3, The most advanced in the bolting process of the 3. Must divine a use for it all soon besides just picking one or two of the super, super strong spicy leaves for sauces...
 The two Parsley subjects. The one on the right was moved out from behind the bolting Cilantro and is now up front; both have drainage, but the white one has been suffering from over watering nonetheless. I moved it up yesterday and during that day and even so far today it has recovered a huge quantity of its previous bright green, which makes me quite happy.
 Speaking of bolting Cilantro! I've eaten the leaves, the stalks, the flowers--all have their own individual tastes, and are supremely pleasant to eat and enjoy. The flowers are my favorite; they have an almost saccharine quality to them and I can sure see why they are a delicacy and used in salads and the like. Believe it or not, this picture is looking down at all three of them--they are a good three feet tall, but lay all over the place and hang out with their neighboring plants.
 1/3 Basil, just a few days after the second harvest. This, like all 3 of my Basil, does not have drainage so I need to be careful when I water them. Beside it is the base of one of the Cilantro--see what I mean by being tall but leaning elsewhere?
 These are the other two of my three Basil subjects--the front one there, if you look in approximately the center of the photo but just slightly up and to the right you can see the cluster of leaves (it almost looks like a bud?) that is beginning to form on the tallest of the three plants.
 Kung Pao budding away... So what does it look like when it blooms?
 Something like this. ^.^ There are two there if you look close.
 Now, I honestly have to admit that I was not expecting to have something like these come out of planting the seeds that I found in a Bell Pepper, but they have grown at twice the speed of the other peppers and I have already transplanted them all once. I must admit I forgot to take a picture of the tiny pot that had the upside down stem of the pepper in it--it is growing well, I shall attempt to remember to take pictures of it close up and not just in front of all the herbs in a black pot next time.
And here, moving at just a slightly slower pace in budding and blooming than the Kung Pao, is the Jalapeno bud. The other sets of Jalapenos are coming along as well, but seem to be a good week behind these ones. Perhaps that is due to container size? Watering? Sunlight? Unsure.

Of course I have a few other pictures from that date that I did not add into the chronicles; but I have decided to do both 'The Other Plants' and the Tomatoes in another posts that will focus on comparison right after this one. Talk to you soon... So very soon! Ah, how I love unexpected days off...

©reated by ŊetHerŊøte

Thursday, 9 August 2012

We've got Green Tomatoes Growing!

...And I will leave it at that. 

Small wonder that so many blogs die when people have--what do they call that again--oh yes, a job. These twelve hour days, seven to seven with an hour's drive each way--well, they don't leave a lot of time. Have I done any of those pages that I said I would do? Not yet. Eventually--that is the keyword, unfortunately. >.<

In the mean time, I did indeed get my self out there before it got too dark and took some pictures of my garden... So without further adieu, check it out, things have changed!!

 The ever taller tomatoes...

 The peppers, preparing to produce...

...My blurry picture of my herbs, sorry about that--the white flowers are Cilantro!

 And, most exciting of all, we've got FRUIT!!

 ...And they're still blooming!!

...And this is a flower--the first and only one so far--from the Bumbershoot.

Nice, eh? Should have heard me when my significant other showed me the first baby tomatoes, I swear I squeaked and bounced around.

Coming home and watering my plants has become a marvelous form of therapy for me; it helps me unwind from my day, and I love to keep track of their progress and ponder what I am going to do with all of my herbs and soon all of my fruit and peppers. So great!

Ah, how I have missed this--good thing I've been writing my book so much that it is eating my life, it's all I think about, dream about at night, where I go when I am in need and where I make myself go when I feel everything becoming too much. One of these days I will have a finished product; but for now, it is my private world where I torture my characters and therefore myself with both the good and the bad... And I wouldn't have it any other way. Thus, I am not promising anything--I sure felt low when I was updating Grow-A-Garden Chronicles, why? Because it had been since July 26th since I had updated it.

Once again I had to remind myself that I need to get paid, and this blog does not pay--not in money anyway, and unfortunately I need this useless currency called money in order to eat and have somewhere to sleep and keep the possessions I have managed to gather for myself.
*AHEM* Packrat *COUGH*
But hey, there are worse things.

Other than that my second Celery--well it died. Just up and died. The Bok Choy? Never sprouted. So I dumped them out--more soil for yet another experiment one of these days, for certain!

Take care friends, and don't forget--it's not as hard to grow things as you may think. I don't know why I thought my plants would all die--they're tougher than that... After all--I've been taking care of them, and they are strong. ^.^

©reated by ŊetHerŊøte