We've been planting as quickly as we can since the weather is cooperating nicely. It is supposed to rain off and on for the next few days so I think I will be able to get everything in the ground. I finally finished planting the high tunnel. On the South wall are the sweet potatoes interplanted with calendula and spearmint, catnip, and chives at either end of the row. The next row is Cherokee Trail of Tears and Rattlesnake pole beans. The middle row holds Malaysian Dark Red, Pandora, and Turkish Orange eggplants, King of the North sweet peppers, and loads of hot peppers: Lemon, Chocolate Habanero, Early Jalapeno, Thai Hot, Thai Hot2, Thai Hot3, Laos, African Red, and Bolivian Yellow. The next two rows are mostly tomatoes: Green Gage, Large Red, Italian Tree, Limmony, Cherokee Purple, Vintage Wine, Brandywine Red, Mortgage Lifter, Bloody Butcher, Stupice, and Rutgers. The second of those rows is filled out with Genovese Basil and I'll be putting in the cucumbers tomorrow. The North wall is filled with herbs: sage, rosemary, thyme, cilantro, elecampane, and summer and winter savory.
In the nonplanted area of the hops section I have two wide rows of red kidney beans and two wide rows of soldier beans, a row of sunflowers, a wide row of Stuttgart onions, a row of Copenhagen Market Cabbage, Champion Collards, a row of Giant Musselburgh Leeks, and Garden Huckleberries. Next to those I'll put the Charentais melons -- trying them in the field for the first time. That will leave a smaller area next to the hops where I will plant the Sweet Annie, Lavender, Bergamot, and Foxy Digitalis. I was too tired to finish planting the rest of the flats and that is too bad because we have received the nice rain today, but hopefully I'll get it all finished this week and be able to make the farmers market next week if all goes well.
Tom and I set up the hand pump by the creek. Now whenever I need water I will have it handy. The pump is kind of hard to get going because the hose is 1" diameter, but it works well once the water comes up. I pump into a pail and and dump that into a large garbage can. That makes it easy for Ed to fill a watering can. I don't want him too close to the creek bank. Watering plants is something he can do -- at least once the plants are big enough for him not to step on. I figure I'll have arms that look better than Michele Obama's by the end of the summer!
Thanks to Shane and Molly from the Midway Bar for the egg cartons! I'll bring you some eggs once the ladies are laying.
The garden boxes are looking good. Here is Box 1 with the garlics, shallots and potato onions:
Box 2 looks kind of sparse but that is because I need to plant more sorrel and the St. Valery carrots are still very small. The Forellenschuss lettuce you can see is small but growing rapidly, and at the end of the box the scallions and Egyptian Walking Onions are looking good.
Box 3 is pretty full. I received a free packet of Alaska Peas from Baker Creek and while they are growing, I am not impressed. They seem to be very slow and the germination was not that great. The French heirloom turnips (Navet Des Vertus Marteau) are EXCELLENT. I have been eating the thinnings in salads and they are just delicious. I think I will try to save most of this vegetable for seed. The French Breakfast Radishes are ready to pick and the Nichols Mesclun Mix is ready to start cutting, as well. That, by the way, is my favorite mesclun mix. Don't see the Golden Beets anywhere yet so I don't know if they'll come up or not. In any event, I should have at least scallions, radishes, salad greens for sale at the market when I go.
The new grape vines are growing!
And the rhubarb seems to like its new location.
You know I free-range my chickens (much to my husband's dismay), and before I relegate the roosters to the nearly finished chicken skid out in the field, I thought you might like to see some pictures of their favorite haunt -- under the balsam trees among the wild raspberries in the woods just beyond the grassy lawn. They scratch themselves a resting place in the duff layer during the heat of the day, then roam around in the grass around dusk before returning to the coop by dark. They are very happy chickens!