Harvest Monday, July 9 2012

I was visiting family in Toronto and Massachusetts for the past week, so no harvest from my garden. I did harvest lettuce (and more lettuce to bring home to NY) from my son-in-law’s garden.

Since I helped frame the raised bed last fall I decided to write a post about it so those with limited space can see how much can be harvested from a small plot and be encouraged to build a small garden.

The above photo is my daughter, Kathy, and son-in-law, Dan’s, 18′ x 18′ vegetable garden. They designed and built the garden together but Dan ended up doing the planting and maintenance. He is doing an excellent job and the small garden is very productive. It is very heartwarming to see young people interested in growing food for their table.

The beds were unframed raised beds and the soil kept getting washed away. Last fall I suggested they frame the beds and together we spent 2 days framing the 6 beds (2 long ones and 4 short ones). This spring Dan installed soaking hoses (red tubes in photo) in all 6 beds.

Left to right: Fordhook giant Swiss chard, lacinato kale, pepper (right back) and parsnips (right front)

Tomatoes (in cage) and nappa cabbages in the spaces between cages (very efficient use of space)
Behind the tomatoes is the asparagus bed

The 2 hanging disks are for chasing away the birds (maybe working for chipmunks too, Dan hasn’t seen any chipmunks in the garden so far this year)
Bed in front: green beans at both ends, yellow plum tomato in the middle. Second bed: lettuce and early girl tomatoes

More lettuce. The above is the Simpson Elite lettuce. A loose-leaf variety with light  green curly leaves that resists heat. Dan is hoping this one (spring) sowing will continue to supply him with tender leaves the whole year (even through the summer heat). Currently, he harvests the outer leaves as needed and let the plant grow. I am looking forward to learning the results.

A different view of the garden
Also growing in the garden are: cucumber, celeriac and Chinese chives
Still harvesting lettuce (mine are all gone). Lettuce doing so well their neighbours are happy recipients. Bok choy, spinach, nappa and lettuce will be going into the soon to be vacant red leaf lettuce space
The garden also produced a very good harvest of Shanghai bok choy and spinach

Compost bins (3 black boxes on the other side of the garden fence)
They are into composting and recycling big time, a good thing. All garden beds are enriched with the compost

Copyright © by Norma Chang

Visit Daphne’s Dandelions http://daphnesdandelions.blogspot.com/ for more Harvest Mondays

About Norma Chang

I am the author/publisher of 2 user-friendly Chinese cookbooks: "My Students' Favorite Chinese Recipes (updated edition)" and "Wokking Your Way to Low Fat Cooking" A gardener who enjoys cooking and eating and loves to think outside the box A garden volunteer at Locust Grove Heritage Vegetable Garden Conduct hands-on cooking workshops for teenagers Conduct cultural programs for children and family Conduct healthy cooking classes for adults
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79 Responses to Harvest Monday, July 9 2012

  1. Liz says:

    That looks like a great garden. Those beds will love all that compost.

  2. Another fantastic progress report my friend, you are doing splendidly 🙂


  3. Your garden looks both happy and healthy my friend, keep it up 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  4. Wow Norma-such a neat and well organised vegetable garden-most impressed!!
    Mind you having such a plot on the flat is enough to impress me- living as I do and having to garden at the top of a steep hill!!

  5. Kim says:

    And all neat and tidy in the D and K way :0).
    Lovely garden

  6. Wilderness says:

    Norma great post. I love the idea of square foot gardening and am finding it is even working well on a modified version in my big gardens.

  7. Eva Taylor says:

    What a lovely looking garden, Norma. It is indeed nice that they are enjoying growing their own vegetables. I also like a raised bed so you can control your own soil. I have never had success composting, we have purchased so many different types of composters. Fortunately, the City of Toronto has an excellent composting program and we whole heartedly participate.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Eva,
      I refer to the garden as the “Martha Stewart’s Garden”. Honestly, I was pleasantly surprised at how much time and effort they put in the gardens, both flowers and veggies.

  8. What a beautiful and well organized garden! How I wish I had even 8 x 10′ of sun in my yard for my garden of the same size. I have some serious garden envy as a result of this post! 😉

  9. That is a beautiful garden Norma – they are lucky to have you to learn from!

  10. Daphne says:

    It is a pretty garden.

  11. Michelle says:

    It is a lovely garden and it sounds like it is quite productive.

  12. Thank you for posting this encouraging message. Even with only a little space, there is much that can be done. I really need this encouragement.

  13. pooks says:

    I covet this beautiful garden! It’s so lush and green, and the fencing is beautiful!


  14. This is such a beautiful, well thought-out little garden! I am always impressed by how productive garden spaces can be when they are efficiently used. And I’m envious of those lovely lettuces- ours are long gone.

  15. Dave says:

    That sure is a good looking garden! It is amazing how much can be grown in smaller spaces. It looks like they have a lot of good stuff growing there.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Dave,
      Read my reply to Eva’s comment. They only grow the things they both like. I am hoping this post will encourage people to garden even if space is limited,

  16. Dave's SFG says:

    Your daughter and son-in-law did a beautiful job on that garden. Good that they had your expert advice. I particularly like their fencing and the color they painted the posts. Even the compost bins are neat and tidy. Mine bin is hidden behind the shed for a reason!

  17. Lisa says:

    Really lovely. I imagine there’s a real dear problem, if they need so much fencing. It’s nice to see that how attractive everything is.

  18. Kate says:

    This is probably the most well-tended garden I’ve ever seen. Good job!

  19. emily says:

    What a nice tour of your daughter and son-in-law’s garden. It’s lovely!

  20. maryhysong says:

    That is a really pretty garden! Tell them they need to join us for Harvest Mondays!

  21. Kristy says:

    Oh my goodness! Another beautiful and well-organized garden. One of these days I will get around to planting (and tending) a garden! This is just beautiful. I hope you had a great trip. 🙂

  22. mac says:

    Beautiful garden, the veggies look healthy and happy.

  23. Wow! What great design and execution! Great inspiration, I always love seeing new gardens.

  24. Everything looks great so far!

  25. I hope that you enjoyed your visit to Toronto!!! Your daughter’s garden looks lovely — and so nicely laid out for a small space. Mine is about a quarter of the size, and not nearly as organized. I really like those nice tall cages for the tomoatoes — I bet they work well.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello P and P,
      Had a great time in Toronto, it was actually much cooler in Toronto than in the Hudson Valley.
      My daughter and son-in-law are very meticulous. Read my reply to Eva’s comment. I like those tall cages too I believe they were mail order, need to look into getting some for next year.

  26. That’s a glorious garden!

  27. machisan says:

    wonderful garden.

  28. Karen says:

    Not only is the garden nicely planted and growing well but the fence is beautiful.

  29. Juliana says:

    Oh Norma, it is always so nice to visit your posts…love your garden…everything is so organized and growing so nice.
    Thanks for sharing all these precious pictures…hope you are enjoying your week 🙂

  30. Simone says:

    That looks beautiful Norma. Our garden is tiny but we are also thinking of growing some of our own veggies. I have areal beginner question for you on chilies. We are growing some indoors and have just repotted them into their individual pots. How big should they be before you move them outside?

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Simone,
      Are you going to keep your chilies in pot or will they be going into the ground?
      You can move them outside any time as long as it is warm. Since they have been indoors you need to harden them off gradually.
      This is how I harden off. Day 1, outdoor in shade. Day 2, in filtered sunlight. Day 3, in sun for 1 hour, Day 4, increase sun exposure to 2 hours, Day 5, 3 hours, Day 6, 4 hours and by day 7 they can pretty much take whole day sun. Make sure the pots do not dry out.
      Hope this helped, let me know if you have any questions or need additional information.

  31. My apologies for not dropping by lately Norma 🙂 things have just been a little busy ~ ohhh More harvest yay that’s great 😀 so happy for you! I remember having a compost bin once hehe so smelly

  32. hotlyspiced says:

    That’s such an impressive garden Norma and the plants look so green, vibrant and healthy. Great that you were able to help them box-in the garden beds xx

  33. Norma, this is fabulous! How great that they’re growing so much produce in a relatively small space! Just goes to show what can be done, even with a small yard. It all looks so healthy too – ours gets quite bug-eaten.. 🙂

  34. Sammie says:

    What a beautiful garden Norma!! I can see you put in a lot of love in there!!

  35. Yvonne says:

    I have been looking around for the square/round tomato cages like those but unavailable here in Australia.

  36. Sophie33 says:

    What a wonderful, caged garden! Every vegetable is thriving too! I love it! I think raised beds are the future in gardening! 🙂

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