The backyard berry garden


In spite of having fewer bees this year, the backyard berry garden is doing pretty well. The raspberries seem to be coming in strong, and the strawberry crop is impressive. This photo is of today’s take, and all indications are that tomorrow’s will be even bigger. The only thing we seem to be having a problem with at this point are the blueberries. I planted two small plants earlier this spring and, while one seems to be doing pretty well, the other is withering away. I’ve never tested my soil, but I’m thinking that perhaps it isn’t acidic enough… So, what are you growing this year?

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  1. Posted June 5, 2010 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

    I meant to mention it in the post, but I’ve decided to focus on berries from now, as they’re expensive to buy in the store, and taste really great. And I know I probably shouldn’t, but I consider tomatoes berries too.

  2. DRich
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

    I’m working on carrots (from seed), garlic (planted in the fall), some green pepper seedlings, and an attempt at the Three Sisters technique of planting green beans, corn and squash near each other so that the beans grow up the corn stalks and the squash keeps the ground shaded and moist. We’ll see. I don’t think I have enough room for what I’ve put in. My strawberries are old and almost played out. I’ll maybe get one bowl like you have pictured above for the whole season. I’ll get some good raspberries.

    Anyone have luck with fruit trees in the Midwest?

  3. Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    I have onions and tomatoes planted so far. The cilantro came back, as did the tarragon and oregano. I planted basil in the herb box as well. In the basement I have red bell, peppronchini, jalapeno , and hungarian peppers germinating as well as snow peas, more tomatoes, spinach, lettuce, watermelon, and sun flowers. They’ll go outside soon in the tubs for a week or so before I put them in the ground.

    I also have lettuce planted outside in movable wagons to keep out the bunnies and my neighbors giving me some cucumber plants for my kim chi addiction.

  4. Brackinald Achery
    Posted June 5, 2010 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    Well, if you bought some rope at an Ace hardware, and had a bowl of strawberries with you, I might think you were going to hang yourself because not even strawberries could make you happy. Now lettuce seeds… that says determination.

  5. Oliva
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Lovely presentation. That’s some beautiful wood beneath the berry bowl. (Anybody know the Tasty Kitchen blog, in which contributors post step-by-step pics of various dishes? Just checked–many berry confections, all red-white-and-bluish, jumping ahead to Fourth of July.)

  6. Posted June 6, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Thanks, Oliva, I’ll check it out.

    And berries do make me happy, BA. Nothing thrills me like going out into the alley with my daughter on a sunny Summer day, picking raspberries, going inside to wash the pee off of them, and enjoying them by the fistful.

  7. Stella M
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

    I am way excited to have gotten my seedlings from Maggie’s (organic) Farm yesterday.
    French gr. beans, edamame, lettuce flats, 4 kinds of tomato, chard, basil, cilantro, dill, mixed bell peppers, poblano peppers, nasturtium (edible flowers), a big clump of daisies, cosmos, 4 o’clocks, and blue heaven morning glories.
    I had already picked up my cucumber seedlings which, two weeks later, are twice the size of commercial ones I got four weeks ago.

    I’ve also gotten a commercial pepper and two tomatoes (one of which already died), and seeds for carrots, radishes, scarlet morning glories, sweet pea flowers, and a bunch of assorted flower mix for my newest garden bed which is not really planned yet. Although, I have just been promised strawberry plants.

    I also learned that tomatoes and peppers don’t like being transplanted much which perhaps explains some of my failures last year, which was my first year trying out porch gardening, This year I’m doing both porch and in-ground veggie gardening and will learn from any failures yet again. Some things, like dill, get eaten immediately in the ground but flourish on the porch.

    And eDWierD watch out for that oregano! It will spread everywhere. One thing I do is to lop it all down once a year, soak it in water all night, then throw it on the coals right before putting on shish kebabs and the BBQ lid.

  8. Oliva
    Posted June 6, 2010 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

    One thing I do is to lop it all down once a year, soak it in water all night, then throw it on the coals right before putting on shish kebabs and the BBQ lid.

    What a great tip to share, Stella M. Thank you.

  9. Robert
    Posted June 8, 2010 at 9:15 am | Permalink

    Mark, this love of berries almost humanizes you.

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