Everything in the garden is growing like crazy. The potatoes look really great, but there are still some potato bugs (Colorado Potato Beetle) on them, so Hythe has been helping me pick them off every other day. He likes to drown them (rather than smash), and I agree – they can be a little gross to smush. I am now working to get the potatoes mulched with straw. I am half-way there and will finish this weekend, I hope. The straw fills in for the second potato hilling and works quite well. I love the potato blossoms. They are so pretty, and with five different varieties, each flower is a little different in color. I told Hythe we could start getting some potatoes from the ground when they starting flowering, so he has been reporting to me each time a variety starts to flower. I have only dug a few little baby potatoes, though – they still need some time. It is a pretty time in the garden.
The snap (or English) peas are producing lots and lots of peas right now. We’ve been picking (and eating) every other day. I have a stock pile in the refrigerator for lunches and snacks. I will try to freeze some tomorrow because we finally have grown enough that I can feed everyone who wants peas, and have some left over. My family far prefers to eat the peas raw, and they end up on plates and in lunch boxes in the pod to be split open and snacked on during the day. I have also been shelling and throwing them into salads and soups every chance I get.
Lettuces are still growing, though some are starting to bolt. I need to do my “next” sowing of lettuces, carrots, beets, and beans. Maybe this weekend.
The squash and watermelon are growing well and are all now mulched with straw. I hope to have zucchini soon. The beans are getting ready to flower and the okra is about 3 inches tall now.
And, we have (or had) cherries. Lots of cherries, so many we could not possible pick them all. Plus, they were at the top of some tall-ish trees and we could not reach them all. Nor, would I have had the time to pit them all. But, we did get a couple of gallons. We ate lots fresh, then I pitted a lot and made jam, a pie, and froze the rest. While I love cherries, I am ok with the season being short. We’ve had so much rain that the over-ripe ones in the tree are mostly split and moldy now. I am grateful for all the fruit we have. Strawberries are just finishing, cherries have come and are nearly gone, but while we were getting the last of the cherries tonight, Evva came up to me with the first black raspberry! And, soon there will be blueberries. And, the boys have been finding some ripe mulberries. So glad to have all this fruit!
The garden work is continuous, and for now, still enjoyable. Hythe enjoys helping me, and I love it when William joins me in the garden to pick or mulch or weed. The girls have not been so enthusiastic. Well, they are enthusiastic about the theory of a garden, but not in practicality of it. They cheer on the great food coming from the garden, but rarely participate in the work. I should probably encourage them more, but I don’t want to nag. And, they often have their own passions and interests they want to pursue while I pursue my in the garden. But, I came home from a run last weekend to find William had set up Anne with the weed wacker and she cut all the weeds around the garden and near our house. She had fun and felt grown-up and useful. It was wild to see her from a distance as I came home from my run, wondering who the teenage boy (or old man?) was who was weed wacking our garden, only to realize it was Anne. Looking strong and capable. While I never would have set her up with that machine (I can barely run it myself), I was glad William had.