2017 Harvest

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Tired and frustrated

What do you do when you get a first sunny day after weeks of rain?
You rush to the garden to do as much as you can. I have so many things to do, so much weeding, planting, digging and not to mention I still have around 300 different seedlings for planting.

But all this had to wait because my main job for today was placing a net for my cucmbers.
For the last 10 years we plant our cucumbers on a net. Growing cucumbers on a net is the best way for a downhill garden. Cucumbers are clean, take less space in the garden and it is easier to pick them. All you have to do is walk and pick. Also other good thing is that if cucumbers grow too big they will not sink in mud and turn yellow. 
Bad thing is that besides the net you need to get strong enough poles, meters of string and wire tensioners to keep the net from ending up on the floor. Also you need a strong enough person for digging holes.
In my family I'm the toiler so I had no choice but to get up early enough and start digging holes.
For my 10 meters long net I use 6 poles that need holes 50cm deep. The only way to dig them is with this little thing.

This hole digger saves me from bruised hands and sore back. I just stick it in the ground and turn.
After digging holes I have to bring poles down the steep and slippery path. Usually I carry 3 poles at once (I eat lots of spinach) but today soil was so wet that I decided to play caber toss and threw my poles from the yard in the garden. I've hit the fence and potatoes that just grew out of the ground but in the end all my poles were back in the garden.
I could leave them in the garden over the winter but then this would happen.

There is so much humidity in the garden that one of the poles I forgot last year is now turned in mushroom pole.
After 4 hours of digging, nailing, stretching, tying and almost crying net was finally up and I was able to plant my cucumbers. I planted Levina F1 and Chinese cucumber Souther Delight.

Two days ago when my neighbor took it's seedlings she gave me a bag of shallots.

 I have never planted them before. But I was told they shouldn't be planted deep in the ground so I left them outside and then I covered them for "just in case".

 This year I decided to plant tall plants all over my garden to protect my vegetables from heats we have during the July and august. I have planted corn, millet, sunflowers and amaranth. Some of them are in my greenhouse waiting to be transplanted and some of them were sown directly to the garden.

Amaranth was one of the directly sown plants. Last year I bought some amaranth seeds and planted them in front of my house. I got huge amount of seeds from just one plant so I decided to plant it in the garden.

While I was sowing the bag containing Amaranth seeds slipped from my hand and seeds fell on the ground. I collected as much as I could but as it seems I did a very lousy job.

I can't wait to see how this bed will look when all of my amaranths grow a meter. I'll have a forest in the middle of my garden.

 I finished my todays work with planting my zucchinis. They couldn't wait anymore. They started to make flower buds and I don't want my zucchinis blooming in small pots.

Since I know that there is a possibility of low temperatures for this weekend I prepared a plastic covering to cover my zucchinis if necessary. All I have to do is open the covering and secure it.

When I was finished my eyes spotted 2 small pink flowers. My blackberries started to bloom.

This made me take a walk down my orchard and I was surprised by what I found.
I must have done an excellent job with my apple pruning. There is enormous amount of apples on every branch.

There are also lots of cherries. 

and plums.

While I was walking around I heard that thunder started roaring on the other side of the woods. I thought we will have another thunderstorm and went home.
I was tired but happy. I did more work  than I thought I would and most of difficult garden tasks were completed.

My luck didn't last long. We had a storm...a hailstorm.

Hail the size of hazelnuts started falling little after 6:00pm. Ice was falling for about 5 minutes and then it mixed with rain. Storm was ravaging for about 40 minutes. Garden was first white and then flooded.
I waited until it stopped and then carefully went to check it. It's difficult to see the damage on peas and carrots since they are still small, my freshly planted zucchinis look like Emmentaler cheese. Leaves are filled with holes, and the ones that don't have holes have broken stems. I didn't have the courage to check my lettuce and cabbage seedlings. I saw that our neighbors seedlings have lots of damage.
I just turned and went home.

I feel frustrated, angry and disappointed. I was so happy, my garden was growing so well and now this. I know that it's early and all my plants will recuperate and still give fruits but still this just pisses me off. Our country doesn't do anything to prevent hail. Before we had hail cannons and yes we still had hail but it was smaller and didn't do much damage. Now we have no protection and hailstorms are getting more frequent and more devastating.
I'm scared to think what will happen in summer when temperatures reach +30°C.


  1. I am also growing Amaranth this year, as I read that the seeds are edible and also the young leaves, and it looks pretty. I only have few seedlings that germinated, but it should be enough. Talking about flowering courgettes, my cucumbers started flowering but it is still too cold at nights to get them out into the ground

    1. It will be enough, just leave one plant to ripe and you'll have plenty seeds for next year. It's amazing how many seeds they produce.

  2. Oh really stunning! Love the garden so much. Well organized! I love the net for the vines.

    1. Net is a real lifesaver. We always need as much free space as we can get.

  3. Blackberry flowers already, We are only just thinking of sowing courgettes (zucchini) and cucumebr seeds. We grow our cucumbers up hazel poles.

    1. Our blackberries are very early variety. We have our first harvest in middle of June.


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