June Garden Update

Today I want to give an update on the vegetable garden and how it’s doing here in early June. The last couple of weeks I have been busy fertilizing, spreading compost and planting. At this point, I have everything planted except the sweet potatoes, and I hope to get them set out by the end of this week. The bed with brassicas was planted out in late April, while the other end of that bed was planted with bush squashes in mid-May when the soil warmed up a bit. That is a no-dig no-till bed that is covered with weed barrier fabric, like most of my beds this year. The brassicas are getting big now, and I have sprayed them with a B.t and neem oil combo several times to control the cabbage moth caterpillars.

brassicas in bed

Some of the cabbages are even beginning to form heads already, and the giant Kossak kohlrabis are sizing up nicely too. Slugs have not been an issue so far, no doubt partly due to our drier than usual weather conditions. I’m growing the early cabbages Green Presto and Quick Start this year, along with the somewhat later flathead variety Sweet and Tender.

cabbage heading up

Kossak kohlrabi

There are a few weeds that sprout up in the planting holes I cut in the fabric, but they are easily controlled. I find there are less weeds than with my old method of planting and mulching using newspaper covered with straw. The fabric is also easy on my aging knees when I have to kneel or crawl around to plant or weed!

weeds in planting hole

broccoli after weeding

The bush squashes I planted at one end of the brassica bed have been blooming for about a week now and are starting to set fruit. The light green Clarimore zucchini is the first to set fruit this year, with the yellow squash Tempest not far behind. I planted two bush acorn types (Goldilocks and Starry Night) in the bed also and they have just started blooming.

Clarimore zucchini

Tempest squash

I planted another bed with small-fruited tomatoes and slicing types on 5/14, and those plants are really growing. I am using my cages made from concrete remesh material, which I have been using for several years now. This is another no-dig no-tell bed, as are all the beds this year except the one where I will be planting sweet potatoes.

Purple Zebra tomato

The rest of the tomatoes, mostly paste and processing types, are in another bed along with eggplants at one end. I got those planted at the end of May.

Granadero paste tomato

I used the remesh cages for the indeterminate types like Juliet and Granadero in this bed, and the folding metal cages for the short vine tomatoes like Health Kick and Plum Regal.

Health Kick tomato

I set out the pepper plants a few days ago. They are looking good so far, and since we have entered drought mode here I went ahead and put a soaker hose on top of the pepper cages.

pepper plant

I’ve found that running the soaker hose along the top of the cages works well when the plants are small. Careful placement of the hose results in the plants getting well watered. Once the plants get bigger, the canopy of leaves will prevent the water from getting to the roots and I will run the hose along the base of the plants.

soaker hose

The last thing I got planted was the pole beans, which went in this morning. I used my trenching hoe from Lee Valley Tools to make a shallow trench and loosen up the soil just enough to get the bean seeds sown and covered. I watered this bed in by hand after sowing, and I will run a soaker hose along the length of the bed in a day or so. I’m growing all heirloom type beans here except for the 2017 AAS Winner Seychelles.

making trench to plant beans

Tomorrow I will begin getting the bed ready to plant sweet potatoes, which will involve loosening the soil with a tiller and then making a ridge about 8 to 10 inches high and wide before setting out the sweet potato plants at the top of the ridge. I hope you have enjoyed this tour of the garden here in June, and I’ll be back soon with more happenings from Happy Acres!


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1 Response to June Garden Update

  1. I always enjoy these garden tours. Do you reuse the weed barrier? The no till method has certainly worked well for you.

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