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. You can read more about the project here. Bellow an update of what’s happening in ours.
I have said before and it still holds true that the tiny Garden Connect plot is a great representation of the rest of our garden, our allotment in miniature if you will. The above and bellow pictures show what it looked like about a month ago, after we came back from vacation:
Unsurprisingly, the lettuce bolted during a hot spell. The nasturtiums however filled out their allotted square completely and are still going strong, providing us both with leaves for mixed salads and peppery edible flowers.
The tomato “Ferline” succumbed early to blight – even before we could harvest any fruit at all. It is a supposedly blight-tolerant variety, but our experience has not been great. At least in our garden – the picture on the left is of the plants I planted in the community garden where it is still producing heavy and juicy red fruits. Possible explanation is that the community garden in the center of the city is relatively isolated and disease does not spread as fast as on the allotment where everybody is growing veggies. (They are the tomatoes I used for this recipe).
The two vegetables that have probably done best for us are the hot pepper (variety “Westlandse Lange Rode”) which is still producing and the lemon cucumber. I’ve put a bamboo cane next to the cucumber plant and tied it in but it has formed many side vines which crawled all through the bed. I let it, since it was giving us many round crispy fruits. I only pulled the plant out last week, after it started suffering from mildew.
The beans (and also the carrot tops) have been nibbled on by rabbits but since the bush beans started intertwining with the neighboring nasturtiums,which the rabbits apparently detest, they lost interest and some beans formed and ripened.
I harvested some smallish beets to make space for the remaining plants, they are still growing well. Parsnips are looking great, with strong dark leaves, but I will wait a bit longer to harvest, since parsnips are supposed to taste better after frost.
To sum up, these are the plants remaining in the bed: hot pepper, nasturtiums, bush beans, kale (also half eaten by rabbits, but still alive), chard (substitute for bolted spinach), parsnips and beets. I am thinking of resowing/replanting the empty squares with corn salad, parsley, leaf mustard, endive or radicchio.
This is a sample harvest from the Garden Connect plot, two weeks ago:
p.s. It seems that the Garden Connect project will continue next year, so if you are interested in participating, you’ll have a chance! The more participants, the merrier 🙂