July in rearview mirror

Allotment in July

Because (as I mentioned before) we were gone for at least half of July, our garden has not exactly been showered with attention during the past month. Still, we managed to get most of the important jobs done, the sowing and replanting of the beds that will make sure that we can harvest more than weeds after our holiday.
At the beginning of July, after pulling out the sugar snaps and snow peas, I sowed rows of radicchio, endive, Romaine lettuce and parsley. In another bed, I planted the pencil-thick leeks. And in yet another one, I planted kale and citrus marigolds (Tagetes minuta “Lemon Gem”) , in the hope that the strong smell of the flowers will deter pests. If not, they are also edible and pretty.

Leeks
After we came back from Oslo, we had two days at home, one of which was very hot and one very rainy. We went to the allotment both days, the first day mainly to water the garden which the next day turned out to have been completely unnecessary. I also pulled out some bolted lettuce, planted out my second batch of red beets and thinned out the seedlings sown at the beginning of the month.

thinning out seedlings

sweet corn & cucumber

allotment in july

The second day, our visit to the allotment was spent mostly hiding in our small shed to avoid getting drenched by the unceasing rain. We did not do much more than harvest vegetables and herbs to take to my parents’. This is what we harvested that day: chard, beets, zucchini and one tiny cucumber, turnips, tomatoes, basil and lettuce (lots) and a mixed bouquet (as a bribe for my in-laws so that they will take care of the garden when we’re gone).

Harvest in july

July always means the first ripe tomatoes and this year’s “First to ripen” award goes to “Losetto”, with “Ida Gold” a close second. The supposedly resistant “Ferline” is not doing well at all, the plants already showing signs of disease, before any fruits have ripened.

tomato "Losetto"
Also, the season of zucchini abundance is upon us, so I better start figuring out some new, exciting ways to cook it. Any ideas? Specifically: any ideas how to prepare it so that my 11 year old zucchini-hater will consider trying the dish?

zucchini

And last but not least: the polyculture experiment in the community garden is looking great! In a narrow strip along the parking lot, we made three teepees to grow climbing beans and between them we planted a mix of sweet corn, zucchini, winter squash, wild tomatoes, cabbages, onions, herbs and (edible) flowers. It’s projects like this that really make me happy: turning an ugly, unused space, into something not only productive but also beautiful that people I do not even know will enjoy.

polyculture of annual vegetables polyculture of annual vegetables

If you’re intrested, this is what our garden looked like a year ago: Edible garden in July

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