Garden Connect – May update

Garden Connect May

Garden Connect is a project that we’re participating in this year where gardeners from around the world grow identical 2 by 6 foot (60 x 180 cm) gardens, compare and share growing methods. Here’s an update of what’s happening in ours. Read more about it here.

The vegetables in the front squares (parsnips, spinach, carrots, beets, spring onions) sown at the beginning of April all sprouted and are growing happily. After weeding each square (the bed was filled with home made compost containing lots of weed seeds), I applied a layer of mulch to keep the soil moist and suppress weeds. I station-sowed all the veg and soon I will be thinning the plants to leave just one or two per station.

beet seedlings

onion seedlings The spinach, because of the recent hot weather, is starting to bolt before ever getting very big. I am considering harvesting it all and maybe replanting the square with chard wich does much better in summer. One of the lettuces from my “Romaine lettuce seed mix” turned out to be an oakleaf lettuce but since we’re not discriminating, it will be allowed to stay.

After mid-May I could finally plant out the half-hardy vegetables, too. I am growing tomato “Ferline” in lieu of the plum tomato specified in the plan. Blight is always a problem in our generally too wet and too cold summers and “Ferline” is blight-tolerant as well as resistant to fusarium and verticillium wilt.

Pepper "Westlandse Lange Rode"

My pepper is a Dutch variety called “Westlandse lange Rode” that I have been growing for the past years because it produces fairly well in our not-so-warm climate.

The cucumber is the lemon cucumber, as specified, and I will quickly have to provide some kind of support for it to fit into the limited space.

I kind of forgot to sow the kale because I normally do that later so that I can plant it as a succession crop after something else. Luckily, I spotted one self-sown kale plant on our old plot and replanted it to my Garden Connect bed. It looks like “Red Russian” but since it’s self-sown, it might have crossed with something else.

garden connect may

I have sown bush beans (variety “Teepee”) and nasturtiums this month but neither has come up (yet).

Today we had our first harvest from the plot: 60 g of lettuce! I picked the outside leaves and will lett the heart of the plant regrow. I find that lettuce harvested this way gives the highest overall yield plus it would be sad to harvest the whole plants and leave their square empty.

Before and after harvest:

lettuce - before harvest

lettuce - after harvest

I like how this small plot is my garden in miniature – a very good representation of what happens in the rest of our garden. It will be so interesting to see the other plots all over the world changing throughout the growing season!

If you would like to read more about this project:
Garden connect – April update

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