Thursday, May 02, 2013

Remember how I'm a garden psycho? Also - tell who sent this awesome thing.

I realize the irony.

I blab for a hundred years on this blog about the garden. Gardenblahblahblah I believe we started calling it, you and I.

And then I decide that - HEY! Let's make this garden bullshit all official and I quit my normal person job, start a garden type business, go back to school for a horticulture degree and then radio silence on the gardenblahblahblah.

Um? Hullooo? What's with the garden then?

Yeah - the garden, my garden, is totally IN for the summer. And I think you know, but I'll say it once for any new people here (HI NEW PEOPLE! Put your drinks on coasters, you fucking animals.) that when I say garden I mean the vegetable one.

The rest of the plants on my property, while they may be lovely and serve special purposes like making food on a perennial basis (artichokes, rhubarb, cherries, apples, lemons, limes, kumquats, etc forever) or bringing in beneficial insects or whatever - my real psychoness is the vegetable garden.

I fucking love to grow vegetables. That's true. Particularly the warm season ones.

And the warm season vegetable garden is SO IN.

BRING IT. Oh. It's here.

National Pickling cucumber because obviously. And all those spring greens in back that are, as we speak, burning to a crisp in the suddenly scorching May sun yay.

One of two Toma Verde tomatillos because you know.

Silver Cloud Cannellini beans because we eat a lot of them and also because WHAT IF I COULD GROW THEM MYSELF? 

The spring greens are really nice and also really on their way out. Sad.

A Small Shining Light watermelon for squaring because of our ongoing desire for food in square shapes
Just a volunteer cilantro doing what all cilantro does. BOLT. Jerk.

A Better Boy Tomato because ALWAYS.

A Jaune Flamme tomato because as of last year ALWAYS.

A Paul Robeson tomato because Love Apple Farms says it tastes fancy and I believe them so we'll just see about that.

Uh...have you see the random poppy field that sprung up in front of my beehive? Because it's awesome.

Right, OK - that last picture is not one of the I FUCKING LOVE IT warm season vegetable garden, but I will say that it for sure falls into the I FUCKING LOVE IT category because just look at this shit:

Hi! We're just going to be awesome over here. Hope you don't mind.

And when you sit at the beehive being all ARE THE BEES OK? YES. then you'll have this nice view.

Even when you're standing back there under the tree, the view is still pretty kickass.

And then the bees have this badass runway so they'll never forget where home is.

It's like a big badass banner that's all, "HEY BEES! Home is here. Come home. NO SWARMING."

So yeah, it's good times in the vegetable garden and in the bees' poppy field.

But because I've been so shitty about Gardenblahblahblahing, you get extra double lucky bonus garden love:


I remembered to sow sweet peas in the fall, so that's happening 24/7 now. 

I shall braid garlic this year. That is my solemn vow.


This probably doesn't seem all that impressive, but the kumquats are putting on a lot of new growth.

Future cocktails.

Sweet peas...

And sweet peas...

And sweet peas some more...

And sweet peas in the neighborly vases that my neighborly neighbor made and hung in the doorway of our neighborly dutch gate.

Artichoke forts are Jada's new favorite thing. Because of the sudden hotness and the super hugeness of the artichokes.

The ladybeetles are on the fucking CASE around here. Love that.

Rocket is in on the fort making. She's such a copycat. CAT HA GET IT YES SORRY.

Hops. Did I tell you I was growing hops? I am. We are hopheads. Make yer jokes.

More poppies. In the front yard meadow. Just because.
A shitastic photo of what are actually very pretty bush anemones. Or something like that.

There are so many artichokes OH MY GOD SAVE US ALL. Also, get butter and garlic.

Peas. They are going to die a quick scorchy death in the heat wave we're having, so I must eat them imediatemente.
So yeah. All of those photos are now out of date because it's been wicked blasting sunuvabitching hot already even though it's barely May and the plants have shot up another foot in the process. Which is cool with me because I haven't had a homegrown fresh tomato (or any other fresh tomato because who's eating that shitshow at the grocery store? Not I.) since 2012 and I'm ready to shove them in my face.

OH! And here's a random late-to-the-game plea:

Someone please tell me who sent this awesome time lapse camera that is, as we speak, documenting the seed to seed life of my favorite tomato.

It just showed up at my house last year and I don't know who sent it even though I've interrogated all of the likely subjects and they're not copping to it.

I swear - it's awesome. I won't hate you or call the cops for your stalking! Mostly I will thank you and then probably apologize that I'm using it for something as absurd as chronicling the life of a tomato instead of something more glamorous like chronicling the life of an Idontknowhat.

A kitten? I bet you'd want to see a kitten. Everyone fucking loves cats, which I don't get. Even though I have a cat. BUT WHATEVER - this is about the camera. If you sent it to me, I'm willing to overlook the fact that you super sleuthed my home address and that creeps me the fuck out and just say thank you and VIRTUAL HIGH FIVE and such.

Also, maybe I'll send you some canned tomatoes? Whatever. We'll work it out. Just come clean.


  1. Wow Finny -- that's an awesome garden! Clearly, you made the right career change. Maybe the camera is some sort of gift from school???

    You're probably laughing now, so I'll ask you -- what's the secret to cilantro. I've tried it several times and it never works. The first time the chipmunks mowed it (and it's replacement) down, but even when I protected it, it didn't last very long. ;-(

    1. Secret to cilantro...well, I've never had any critters try to attack it, like what you're describing, but the key to cilantro is getting it growing before it gets hot.

      It likes cool weather and won't even germinate over 70 or so degrees. Once it's established, it grows REALLY fast with temps over 75 and bolts all supah fast like, so you have to eat it quickly. Usually I harvest at least twice what I need in order to keep it pruned back, but once it sends up its center shoot and puts on the frilly foliage, it's nearly done.

      You can let it go to flower in your garden though, it brings in all kinds of beneficials and you can still eat some of the more cilantro-y looking leaves even though they won't be as tasty as the young leaves.

      I've tried the so-called "Slo Bolt" variety, but really, I think it only takes a few more degrees over the regular stuff before it bolts. Try growing it in a pot and - I know this sounds weird - but give it afternoon shade. That slows it down a bit.

  2. Olivia announced to me that she believes we should grow watermelon. I took the cop out of "Oh gee, that'd be super educational and awesome but oh SAD DAY, we are hopefully moving so bummer. Bummer city kid." I think she knows I hate yard work.

    1. Aw, come on! The poor girl wants to grow a food. Just make her do all of the work.

  3. That photo of Jada is the best.

    I will always be insanely jealous of your citrus growing. Fucking cold-ass upstate New York and its citrus killing winters make it impossible for me to have a lime tree for my gin and tonic limes. Damn it.

    1. That is just rude of upstate New York. What are you supposed to do? BUY PRODUCE AT THE GROCERY STORE? Ew, no thank you.

  4. I want to grow hops. Where did you get yours? Did they start from seeds or seedlings? Am I too late in the season? So many questions!!

    1. I got mine from Thyme Garden online ( - they start from rhizome cuttings. You can put them in any time, but if they're planted late in the summer, they won't put on much growth in the first year before they go dormant for winter. The best time to plant them is early spring as soon as you can work the soil. They grow all summer, climbing the PANTS off of a trellis up to 30' tall, and then you harvest the cones in fall. I'll have cuttings from my crowns next spring, so maybe you can grow from my plants! Depending on the variety you wanted to grow, of course...

    2. Since they stopped shipping these on May 3, I will absolutely take you up on using your crowns if you are up for it. I don't think the Mr. is very picky, since this will be a trial. Hopefully he can brew something yummy from them down the line.

  5. I love these photos! I still cannot get over how much diversity you manage in that much space. You really were meant to do this.

    1. Maybe one day I'll convince Bubba to let me rip out that effing lawn and then TAH DOW more vegetable beds.


[2013 update: You can't comment as an anonymous person anymore. Too many douchebags were leaving bullshit SPAM comments and my inbox was getting flooded, but if you're here to comment in a real way like a real person, go to it.]

Look at you commenting, that's fun.

So, here's the thing with commenting, unless you have an email address associated with your own profile, your comment will still post, but I won't have an email address with which to reply to you personally.

Sucks, right?

Anyway, to remedy this, I usually come back to my posts and post replies in the comment field with you.

But, if you ever want to email me directly to talk about pumpkins or shoes or what it's like to spend a good part of your day Swiffering - shoot me an email to finnyknitsATgmailDOTcom.