We have started thinking about the new little garden as ‘our recycled garden’
As I mentioned before, the beds are enclosed in recycled wooden window slats; the bottoms covered with recycled newspapers; the mulch is recycled green waste; the tomato climbing screens are made from sections of an old dog pen; some of the pots we are placing around the garden area are being brought in from our front yard, including an old wheelbarrow where I had planted some herbs; and we will be using pieces of bamboo recycled from another area where we are thinning it to make plant supports. The little paper cups being used to sprout some seedlings in the beds are some we couldn't use due to their being too small for the cup dispenser we already had....so they have been put to another use.
We will be using some more sections of the old dog pen screening as supports for climbing beans and chayote squash but this will be done in a few weeks. In the meantime, we have been busy adding to what we already started.
Day 6 - Thursday, September 7, 2006
Bed #8 on right with the bush beans and snap peas already coming up!
On this day we picked up the plants we had reserved at the garden store plus added a few more to our stash.
Late afternoon Anthony started cleaning up the weeds and junk growing all around the already established banana plants. We have 4 Brazilian Dwarf bananas (2 of them are bearing racks of bananas and one is 'throwing out' a bloom!) and are surrounded by little banana keiki (baby volunteer plants) and we also have one Cuban Red banana which has been planted for 4 years and hasn’t done anything yet. Read an article I wrote about bananas and try the delicious banana bread pudding recipe
Day 7 - Friday, September 8, 2006
Bed # 6 - We planted 3 eggplants - the varieties are called Long Green Japanese, Round Green and Millionaire. We have no idea what color, shape or size is this last one, but the name sounded interesting!
In the same bed we planted two varieties of parsley - Italian and curly leaf. Later we will add something else low growing to this bed.
Bed #1 - We planted 2 Roma tomatoes and cuttings from grape and cherry tomatoes. I also planted 2 Italian basil and cuttings from an already established lemon basil located somewhere else in the yard.
Bed #7 on right - Anthony planted a zucchini and 2 red bell peppers. We will be planting other low growing herbs here later. You can see a bit of Bed #6 beyond this bed, where the Mexican tarragon, eggplants and parsleys have been planted
I planted several garlic chives and two heads of garlic cloves in different beds throughout the garden.
We also moved over one of the potted Hawaiian chile peppers to this garden site and planted some spearmint in a clay container to give it room to grow without letting it take over in any of the other beds.
On left is the Hawaiian chile peppers in a pot and the pot of speamint sitting below, next to the spearmint you can see a small pot of varigated Cuban (sometimes also called Caribbean) oregano which will be divided and planted in the bare area right behind the chile pepper pot.. The long, scraggly green plants you see in the back to the left are the pineapple tops, waiting to be trimmed and planted in the new pineapple bed.
Spearmint is called Yerbabuena (good herb) in Spanish and it's a key ingredient for Cuban mojito drinks. If no spearmint is available, regular mint can be substituted.
Classic Cuban Mojito
Sugar, lime juice, Spearmint (Yerbabuena), white rum, sparkling soda water and ice cubes.
Using a tall highball glass, crush a generous sprig of spearmint with the sugar and lime juice. Add the rum, ice cubes and fill the glass with sparkling soda water. Add a fresh sprig of spearmint as garnish. Cool, refreshing and wonderful on a hot day!
Close-up detail of Hawaiian Chile Peppers on right
Day 8 - Saturday, September 9, 2006
A week today since we started the garden and already you can see progress and changes.
Bed #2 - Anthony planted carrots, beets and onions. These carrots are supposed to be short and stubby. This is the bed where I had planted a row of regular chives on Monday. Later on I had to trim them all down to about 1 inch above the soil line to give them a spurt of encouragement.
He also started a seedling tray with several varieties of seeds. These will be transplanted into the garden beds later on if they do ok.
I mentioned last week about offering the Surinam cherry keiki (seedlings) from under our tree at the Freecycle site and had a few people come and dig up quite a bit of them. It’s always fun to get to meet other plant people. One person brought us three delicious avocados from her own trees…. I will share what I did with some of them next week!
After reading last week's blog entry one of our friends contacted me about how to find the FreecycleBigIsland group. I have highlighted it above for those of you who live in Hawaii and for those everywhere else you can find a local group by clicking Freecycle.org
……….and that is how my garden grows today!