The kitchen garden is having its first peak of the summer season. We have been picking raspberries for several weeks and the blackberries are beginning to mature. The cold snap that we had in spring followed by a much cooler start to summer must have helped the blackberries grow because we've never had them this big before.
We harvested a handful of figs just this week. Figs must fully ripen on the tree. The timing is tricky...getting the ripe fruit before the birds find it!
The tree is good size and is the anchor tree to this slopped garden. It is surrounded by pollinator loving plants including salvia 'hot lips', purple coneflower, several varieties of euphorbia, Russian sage, and clematis.
The tree is full of fruit ready to ripen. I am looking forward to making some fig preserve but eating it fresh off the tree is just as scrumptious! Even one of our garden helpers thinks it makes a great shady spot to escape the heat. This is Biscuit. He is a great watch dog! Sasha on the other hand is our hunter and spends her time outdoors catching voles and moles. I'll spare you the photos of her presents.
|Biscuit hiding under the fig tree|
Squash, cucumbers, zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes and peppers are growing in the raised beds.
It has been challenging controlling the squash bugs this year. Inspecting the leaves daily for eggs and scraping them off helps. Watering at the base of the plants brings the insects out and I can hand pick them off. Those I miss will hopefully fall prey to spiders, tachinid flies or parasitic wasps.
|squash bug nymphs and eggs|
Despite the "pest" problem, the pollinators are busy doing what they do best...
|bee in zucchini blossom|
|cheyenne pepper....balance of sweetness and heat!|
The good news is that all the rain we've gotten this year means very little supplemental watering.
2013: 37.32 inches
2012: 37.03 inches
We've had as much rain in the first 6 months of this year as all of last year!...and there is more to come.
For a look at the raised bed project: Kitchen Garden Raised Beds
I am joining:
Garden Bloggers Harvest Day hosted by The Gardening Blog
Next up I will show you what a bee does when it gets caught in the rain.