A garden is the best alternative therapy.

Vegetables

A Round Rock Garden Plant Profiles: Vegetables

For the spring and summer garden (2011), we have several plantings that are well on their way to a good harvest.  We have celebrity and early girl tomatoes that are already almost three feet tall and flowering.  Habanero and jalapeno peppers are also starting to produce little nubs that will grow into peppers, but I am pinching them off for the time being until the plants bush out a bit more.  Green bell peppers are starting to form as well.  The curcurbits (yellow squash, zucchini, cucumbers, watermelons and cantaloupes) have really taken off and are not only flowering, but are already producing fruit.

All of our veggies are grown organically.  That means we do not use synthetic fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides.   Check our Why Organic page to learn more about the organic fertilizers we use.

Below is a listing of vegetables varieties that we are currently growing, have grown in the past, or tried to grow!  I’ve included some of my sowing/planting/growing/harvesting notes. Please use the links below to jump to the specific vegetable you want to read more about.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Vegetable List

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Beans (bush), (Heirloom Tendergreen cultivar)

Tender Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun.  Grows to 14-16″ plant with 5-7″ mature pods.  Harvest in 55-60 days.  Sow after frost 1″ deep and 4-8″ apart in rows.

Tendergreen is a variety suggested for our area, so I thought I’d give it a try this Spring.  I started eight plants indoors and transplanted them outside.   I have them in a 2×2′ bed in two rows of four plants each.  High winds killed a few and I got a handful of beans before I pulled them up and decided to start over.  Now I have about two dozen plants in a 3×3 bed and they’re doing wonderfully!  We should be harvesting in mid-July.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Beans (bush)(Blue Lake cultivar)

Tender Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun.  Grows to 15-18″ with 6-7″ mature pods.  Matures in 55-60 days.  Sow after frost 1″ deep and 4-8″ apart in rows.

Blue Lake did okay for us last fall.  I got a slow start on them, but we managed to get a few dozen beans out of eight plants before the cold weather took their toll on them.  I grew eight plants from seed this Spring and got a pretty meager harvest.  I’m trying the Tendergreen this summer to see which variety does better.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Broccoli, Heirloom (Calabrese cultivar)

Another view of the broccoli bed

Hardy Annual.   Vegetable.  Produces a 18-28″ tall plant with 3-6″ crowns and many sideshoots.  For best results, start indoors 4-6 weeks before transplanting in spring or fall.  Sow seeds 1/4-1/2″ deep and allow 3-10 days for germination.  Space plants at least 18″ apart.  Fertilize once at onset of crown with phosphorus fertilizer and again after harvesting central crown.

I’ve enjoyed growing the Calabrese.  I grew nine plants this winter and enjoyed many harvests of crowns and tender sideshoots.  I had mine growing in a bed that is 3×3′ and 1′ deep, divided in equal sections by galvanized wire.  Broccoli is a cool weather crop, so I will not be planting any more until fall.  I should start more seeds by mid-July for early September transplant.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Carrots (Big Top cultivar)

carrot tops

Hardy vegetable.  Full Sun.  Grows up to 12″ tall.  Work soil deep and remove all stones and large debris.  Direct sow only 1/2″ deep and thin to 3″ apart when they grow to be 2″ tall.  Harvest in 75 days.  Successive sow for continuous crop.

I planted a few rows of this variety, cabeza grande, literally “big head”.   I sowed in fall and harvested December – February.   Very tasty variety with a very large top, tapering down to a point.  To start crop again in Spring, start the seeds in late January.  I waited a few weeks longer and they carrots were bitter by harvest due to the heat.

Carrots (Danver’s Half-Long cultivar)

Hardy vegetable.  Full Sun.  Grows up to 12″ tall.  Work soil deep and remove all stones and large debris.  Direct sow only 1/2″ deep and thin to 3″ apart when they grow to be 2″ tall.  Harvest in 75 days.  Successive sow for continuous crop.

I planted a few rows last fall and was harvesting from December – February.  These were a shorter, stouter carrot than the Big Top above. It’s important to keep 3″ between plants in order for the carrot to reach full size.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Cucumbers (Straight Eight cultivar), (cucumis sativus)

Tender Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun.  Cucumber is a vine and trellising is suggested for small spaces.  Sow after frost 1/2-1″ deep, three seeds per hill and three feet between hills.  Thin to strongest two plants.  4-12 day germination.  May be started indoors 4-5 weeks before transplanting.  Produces cucumbers 6-8″ long and is more productive the more you pick.

Like the squash and zucchini, the cucumbers were unsuccessful last fall.  I  germinated eight seeds inside, transplanted them and they thinned themselves to the last remaining three plants.  I gave them a dose of fish emulsion, which seemed to get them going.  Now they’re over a couple months old and producing cukes!

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Lettuce (Buttercrunch cultivar), (lactuca sativa)

Buttercrunch variety

Hardy Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun to part shade.  Grows to 8″ head, and needs spacing of at least 8″.  Can be direct sown or started indoors.  Allow 5-10 days for germination at temperatures between 45 and 80 degrees.  Start indoors 4-6 weeks prior to transplanting.  50-55 days to harvest.

This is a great tender lettuce with a velvety feel in the mouth.  This is heat tolerant and slow to bolt and produces dense heads.  I start all of my lettuce indoors and transplant them and I’ve yet to lose one.   Lettuce is a cold weather crop, so I will not be planting any more after our current plants mature.

.
Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Lettuce (Cosmo Savoy cultivar), (lactuca sativa)


Hardy Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun to part shade.  Grows to 12-15″ tall, space 8″ apart.  Lettuce can be direct sown or started indoors and transplanted.  Allow 5-10 days for germination at temperatures between 45 and 80 degrees.  Start indoors 4-6 weeks prior to transplanting.  60-65 days to harvest.

This is a Romaine variety that has long, wide leaves that are crisp and flavorful.  I’ve grown many heads of this variety and it is great in salad or on a sandwich.   My main lettuce bed gets about six hours of direct light before being shielded from the afternoon sun by the house.  The other bed gets part direct and dappled light through the side fence.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Lettuce, Organic Blend, (lactuca sativa)

Hardy Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun to part shade.

I picked up this organic lettuce blend and direct sowed the seeds a few weeks ago.  The seedlings are about an inch tall and once they get another inch taller, I’ll thin them.  These are my last lettuce plants until fall.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Lettuce (Red Sail cultivar), (lactuca sativa)

Beautiful Red Sail lettuce

Hardy Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun to part shade.  Grows to 8″ tall and 8″ wide.  Direct sow or start indoors 4-6 weeks before transplanting.  Allow 5-10 days for germination and 50-55 days to harvest.

Red Sail is an attractive plant to have in your garden with its deep glossy red and crinkly leaves.   Great for adding color to a salad and tastes wonderful, too!  I’ve found that it’s one of the best performers for me.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Pepper (Ring-O-Fire Cayenne cultivar)

More cayenne peppers

Tender Annual.  Full Sun, medium water.  Will produce a 24-30″ plant with 5-6″ peppers.  Sow 1/4″ deep indoors 6-8 weeks prior to transplanting outdoors in mid-April (in Austin area).  Space plants 12-18″ apart.  Matures in 80-85 days.

I am trying this for the first time.  I have many plants going right now – I think close to a dozen.  Four of them are currently producing and the rest should be ready throughout the fall.  Do not overfertilize.  Use additional bone meal for added calcium.  Spray plants every two weeks with weak Hydrogen Peroxide solution.  Spray plants with epsom salt solution at blossom set and again two weeks later for better fruit set.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Pepper, Jalapeno

Tender annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun, medium water.

See above notes for Cayenne.  I do not currently have any jalapeno’s growing, I don’t know how I missed that!

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Pepper, Poblano

Tender annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun, medium water.

I didn’t intend on growing poblano peppers.  I purchased jalapeno plants that were mis-marked and now I have lots of poblanos!

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Pepper, Orange, Red and Green Bell (Cal Wonder cultivars)

red bell pepper

Tender Annual.  Vegetable.  Full sun, medium water.  Produces 18-24″ plants with fruits that are 4″ long and 3″ wide.  Sow 1/4″ deep indoors 6-8 weeks prior to transplanting after soils have warmed (mid-April in our area).  10-14 days to germinate.  Space plants 12-18″ apart.  Matures in 60-80 days.

I am growing this variety for the first time.  I have four plants that are now producing.  I also have four more started from seed for the fall.  They are already a few inches tall.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Spinach (Heirloom Bloomsdale cultivar)

Hardy Annual.  Vegetable.  Plant reaches 1-2′ high with wide, crinkly, 3-4″ leaves.  Direct sow 1/2″ deep when temperatures are between 50 and 75 degrees, or better yet, start indoors 6-8 weeks prior to moving outdoors.  6-12 days to germinate.  Harvest 50-55 days (if grown over the winter, much longer)

I love this spinach.  I enjoyed so many harvests this past winter and early spring, and cannot wait for fall to have more.  I had about twenty plants altogether.  Almost all of them were planted last fall and weathered our winter for January – March harvest.  Slow to start, but easy to grow.  Keep well-mulched.  Loves fish emulsion.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Squash (Heirloom Yellow Crookneck cultivar)

Tender Annual.  This is a large plant, producing a 3-4′ bush and 6-9″ fruits.  Plant 3-4 seeds in groups 3-4″ apart and thin to strongest two plants per hill.  Direct sow when soil reaches 70 degrees.  Can be started indoors up to three weeks before transplanting, but use paper planters to avoid root disturbance.

The squash was planted last fall and succumbed to aphids.  The plants were stressed out by too much rain, not enough sun and the aphids moved in and took over.  I tried again this spring.  I started some indoors this time and transplanted them in early April.  They didn’t make it.  Powdery mildew took them over before I learned how to organically take care of mildew: 1 part of organic milk to 9 parts of water sprayed on the leaves and vines, tops and bottoms.

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Zucchini (Black Beauty cultivar)

Tender Annual.  Vegetable.  Is a large plant at 3-4′ and produces many early 5-7″ zukes.  Plant 1/2-1″ deep when soil reaches 70 degrees.  5-10 day germination and 50-55 days to harvest.  Offers up large colorful flowers that attract wildlife.  May be started indoors up to three weeks before transplanting.

I tried this variety last fall, but the area was too shady, it was too rainy and those conditions led to a sickly plant that succumbed to an aphid invasion.  I attempted again this spring.  I started some indoors and transplanted them early April.  They succumbed to powdery mildew as well …

Back to Top

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Comments on: "Vegetables" (2)

  1. Are there still some vegetables that we can sow during this time of the year? We received some grant money for our school to put up a small vegetable garden, and we only have until the end of December to complete this project.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 57 other followers

%d bloggers like this: