Garden Maintenance Late-June


It is time to harvest all of your radishes, turnips and spinach. As these are spring vegetables, they do not enjoy the hot weather, and will not grow well.

Where possible, we planted these spring vegetables in the space dedicated to a plant that needs a lot of space to grow. Please find your zucchini, melon, squash and cucumber plants, and make sure they have enough room. This means that when you remove your radishes and turnips, you are leaving space open for the larger summer vegetables. If other plants are too close to them, they will stay small and wont produce well.

Radish and turnip sometimes do not form nice round roots. Even so, the greens are delicious sautéed in garlic and butter, and are packed with nutrients and vitamins.

Your kale, broccoli and cabbage leaves are probably huge and overshadowing other vegetables. You should cut off any leaves at the base that are passing over their allotted space. These leaves are delicious steamed or shredded raw in salad.

Harvest anything that is sending up a central stalk or flowering. These vegetable flowers are edible, and wonderful to spruce up any salad.

Starting next week is a good time to replant your lettuce. Instead of harvesting cut-and-come-again, or individual leaves. You should start ripping out the entire head, roots and all and planting your seedling or seeds. Make sure to water thoroughly.

Your peas have probably exploded and should be harvested as often as possible. Regular picking prolongs harvest. As soon as the pod becomes thicker, they become too tough to eat as a mange-tout, but are still delicious as fresh peas. Just crack open the pod and eat raw. Also a wonderful salad addition.

All of your plants can really benefit from some additional feeding around this time – especially tomatoes, zucchini, squash and melons. You should spread compost thickly on top of the soil. Sea weed spray (available at most garden centres) can be sprayed directly onto the leaves and is great for quick access to nutrients. If you have a fish tank, watering with your old fish water is great for the garden. The fish poop is very high in nitrogen, and repels rodents and critters.

Crab meal is a great organic fertilizer for tomatoes and other vegetables, and is also available at many garden centres. Be sure not to buy any chemical fertilizers. Your garden will no longer be organic, and all the beneficial micro-organisms will die, and your soil will be much less fertile. If you are interested in soil fertility as a topic let me know. I could go on for days.

Targeted pest and fungus spray:

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tsp dish soap (phosphate-free)
  • 2 dashes hot sauce

Crush garlic and steep it in water for a couple of hours, strain add a bit of dish soap and hot sauce and spray on leaves to help the plants fight fungus and aphids.

Please keep your excellent questions coming.

Happy gardening,
Tereska Gesing

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