This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. But Skippy always stood by me and was a great friend. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps and garden with me. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees and berry bushes, chickens and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Monday, July 14, 2008

summer flowers

gourd blossomanise hyssop day lilly
nasturtium

The pure white flower of the birdhouse gourd surprised me. So bright and ruffled! The vine of this plant has grown to the top of my 5 foot fence. I am looking forward to the fruit.

Another summer beauty is the hemerocallis or day lilies. These grow semi-wild in our community gardens and I have left several along my garden edge. A nearby gardener has over 50 varieties planted in his garden and new ones open daily.

The small purple-blue flowers are anise hyssop that I grew from seed this year. It has licorice scented leaves and the flowers attract bees.

My nasturtiums and other summer annuals have just begun to bloom. This year I planted flowering annuals as companion plants for my vegetables. They are believed to attract beneficial insects and repel pests. Maybe so, but they also add a nice bit of color to the garden.

9 Comments:

OpenID artistsgarden said...

I have just discovered your blog and I have enjoyed reading it very much.
The photos are lovely too.
Regards
Karen
An Artist's Garden

July 14, 2008 3:57 AM

 
Blogger flora said...

Flowers are lovely and fresh.. picture has a depth and lively

July 14, 2008 7:33 AM

 
Anonymous Taylor said...

What a beautiful daylily! The color is lovely.

July 14, 2008 8:16 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What beautiful flowers!!! I have learned so much from reading your blog and have a question. How do you harvest/dry your Capucjiner Peas? I planted seeds this year from Sandhill Preservation (based on seeing your pictures). Do you withold water from them for a period of time before picking them?

Many thanks,
Rachel

July 14, 2008 6:04 PM

 
Blogger kathy said...

Hi Rachel,

I just waited until the pods were full and then picked them. Normal watering.

What I did next is probably not the best method, but it worked. I put the peas in a bowl, some shelled and some unshelled. As more pods filled in the garden, I picked more and added them to the bowl. I put the bowl in the cool dry basement and forgot about them.

Maybe a month later I remembered them and shelled the unshelled ones. All the peas were dry by then. I put all the dry peas in a zip lock baggie.

I think it's important to let the peas dry completely before storing them, sealed, for the rest of the winter.

Here's a link from a blog called Ottawahortiphilia with more comments on picking and drying the peas.

This year I would like to try a few of the peas fresh. I'm wondering how they taste when cooked like garden peas.

July 14, 2008 9:38 PM

 
Blogger Dan said...

I new the white flower looked familiar and after reading the write up realized it is a gourd flower. I grew these a few years ago but they didn't amount to much. I think it had more to do with being in a pot combined with being neglected. Maybe I should try them again next year, my mom is always asking for them.

Interesting Martini, I have a recipes for cucumbers that I am sure you would enjoy. I will be posting it on my blog once my cucumbers get going. I am hoping to be picking some in 2-3 weeks.

July 14, 2008 10:21 PM

 
Blogger kathy said...

The gourds are so interesting. I was admiring them today. The leaves are soft, like velvet or chenille. They are unlike cuke or squash leaves, which are like sandpaper, with stiff sharp hairs.

I have several small fruits setting. I look forward to watching them mature.

Its not easy to grow cucurbit vines in containers, they have shallow roots and need a lot of water. I failed several times with pumpkins in big pots and I assume gourds are similar.

July 14, 2008 10:30 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad you're back! I really enjoy your blog and have learned so much from it...and today you just helped me with a fall planting schedule!

July 15, 2008 10:01 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kathy,

Thanks so much for the Capucjiner harvest/drying information and for the link.

Rachel

July 15, 2008 11:40 AM

 

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