A tale of two gardens

Loobee is talking about growing Beans, Parsnip from Wellington

Garden ready!

So as we near the end of the challenge I have been reflecting on my two vegie gardens and how their progress differs.

I am always a bit mean about the Wellington garden, given it’s shadiness and poor soil, yet in spite of that is has done well this season. I also have a different objective with this garden since I look over it from the lounge window, this one needs to be pretty and productive whereas the Wairarapa vegie patch is just functional at the moment. Once I break it in more maybe it will too be a thing of beauty. (Of course beauty is in the eye of the beholder and I think my spuds and radishes are things of great beauty).

In Wellington, once the lettuces got over the extreme wet in September they have become lucious and provided us with salads for weeks now, which is great for lazy types who don’t like cooking like myself. The plants I put in at the start of September, which were bought due to my impatience with the seeds, are still going strong, and the seed raised ones have caught up and a few look like they might go to seed soon. There is a new batch coming on to take their place. The afternoon shade the garden gets is certainly good for lettuce with this heat. The peas are also doing well and since they can’t be grown in the Wairarapa, because of the pea weevil ban, the small crop we squeezed in makes a nice treat. Strawberry’s are a waste of time, they are getting rot before they ripen, too much shade for them. The radishes were a fail, the beetroot just a few leaves, still waiting for the carrots, and not a sign of a parsnip but plenty of self sown coriander instead.

In the Wairarapa, the lettuces have been ok, but are heading to seed quickly with the heat and tending towards bitter. I struggled to get the beans to grow, but they are on their way now, the beetroot was a poor strike but doing great now, and the potatoes are super. The best success was the Yates gentle giant radishes. Will definately be growing them again. I have to wait (impatiently) for the courgettes, corn, pumpkins, tomatoes and cucumbers still. (And I found three parsnips among the weeds! Something to look forward to in the winter). The trouble now is the extreme heat and garden can only be watered on weekends, then we are away for three weeks in the summer. I do hope it rains sometimes.

I know I am lucky to have two gardens but I still get garden envy when I see other gardens so much more advanced and productive. The challenge is great to see what can be achieved with what you have and how to make the most of the conditions we are dealt.  The garden is a greatplace to relax, enjoy nature and dream. I am already enjoying my imaginary bumper crop of pumpkins and courgettes, let’s hope that becomes reality.

Thanks to all the gardeners sharing their experience and ideas. So inspiring and encouraging.

Photos- Top two the Wairarapa gardens, functional but not very attractive, the bottom two in Wellington, it’s more about the looks. ( I have mentioned before I don’t do neat and orderly, its a bit wild looking for some probably)