Garden update

We’ve harvested our first cucumber from the garden! It was fun to see the kids’ eyes widen with the first bite – even Nikolai ate it, and he is NOT a fan of cucmbers as a rule. I planted a longer, thin-skinned, less “seedy” Japanese variety and it looks as though we will have quite a harvest from our 3 plants, which I’ve trained to a trellis to take up less space in my raised 3′ x 3′ bed.

The one casualty in the garden has been my crop of pea shoots – some critter mowed each plant down at the base and then didn’t even eat the shoots! Instead of fulfilling my visions of a large dish of stirfried pea shoots, I had to satisfy myself with using what had been cut down for mixing with salad greens. From this I have learned a bit about what sort of plants can live together in a small bed – I should have relegated the pea shoots to the same bed where the spinach, amaranth, basil and onions are thriving, since I can keep that bed covered. Apparently the garden raiders consider my cucumber, bitter melon, and long bean plants too tough for grazing already, so when that bed was uncovered, they still left those alone.

Other than the rodent-type marauders, the garden seems to be suffering only from slugs, and they have been taken care of with a very low-tech solution: glass jars buried so that the lip is even with the soil and filled with beer. I comfort myself with the thought that at least the slugs die drunk and happy.

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