Thursday, December 30, 2010

It's been cold and rainy for the last 2 weeks. Not too much to do in the garden. I have planted all the winter crops I had planned, plus the cover crop on the hillside. The cover crop is thriving. The peas are up, but growing slowly. Potatoes have appeared from where I planted them last summer. The new potato plants have not yet shown their green sprouts. The Swiss Chard and kale are doing fine, as are the arugula and lettuce. The spinach is just beginning to show its primordial leaves, as are the carrots. I have seen signs of broccoli and radishes. The radishes will be ready to harvest in a week or two.

I am enjoying the winter garden in more ways than one. It's beautiful in its own way and it's less work than the summer garden. I need a break!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

It was a cold, drizzly day in Los Angeles. Yes, it is December, but not usual LA weather. (Sounds like the beginning of a novel or bad movie made for television.) Was anybody going to come and garden? I sent the Email out late Tuesday evening. Getting no response, I Emailed this morning that although it was drizzly, we could plant. Yesterday, Rodney had worked 1 1/2 hours mixing compost with the soil in one area of the raised bed. The soil was ready. All we had to do was put in the seeds. I started planting and Juna showed up around 10:30. We planted broccoli, rapini, turnips, parsnips, Daikon radishes, beets, spinach (Tyree) and bok choy. It's been cold. However, after one day of no rain, we are going to have 4 days of rain. Great for the garden!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Anaother beautiful day in paradise!

I feel so lucky to be living in LA. No, it's not perfect, but it's close. It's 75 outside and sunny. Another great day to garden. Gathered up lots of brown leaves from my big tree. I must have 10 large gargabe bags of leaves by now. Great for compost!

Rodney dug up the soil in the raised bed. I wanted to plant more turnips and parsnips, but Rodney said I probably needed more compost. I will buy some on Monday and plant on Wednesday.

Watered everything and that's it. Not too much to do today.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

What a day to garden!

You couldn't have asked for a more perfect day to be in a garden--sunshine and 70 degrees. Warm, but not too hot. Today was planting day! We planted, and then, we planted some more. Rodney took the bench away from the corner of the raised bed, added top soil, tilled well and planted spinach and bok choy. Then he planted flat red onions on the south wall of the raised bed. Juna arrived earlier than usual, ready to work. She planted bunching green onions all along the north side of Garden #1. I had already planted green onions and radishes in a little corner just next to this area.

John Lyons creator of Home Grown-Culver City, stopped by today. He is an amazing gardener and landscape architect, who I am fortunate to know. We will work together soon. He just stopped by to see what I have done. He liked the soil. Yeah! I have worked hard to amend the soil. It's all about the soil--good, healthy soil and everything else will come!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

I don't normally work in the garden on Sunday, but I couldn't help myself. I watered all the newly seeded areas, including the hillside. Everything is starting to come up, although more slowly than during the summer months. I used the water from the rain barrels. Problem: The barrel by the house is fine, but the barrel behind the studio seems to be a breeding ground for mosquitos. I put a screen over the barrel and the cover, but somehow the mosquitos got in. In addition, there are "things" swimming around in the water--mosquito larvae--who knows. Must find out. I fed the 2 orange trees in the front yard and the gardenias (not food for the body, but food for the soul, in their own way). Still need to spray the Neem oil on the plum and lemon trees in the back yard. The plum tree has some sort of rust and the lemon tree has scale. It's always something!!! (Roseanne Roseanna Danna-Saturday Night Live)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

It was a cloudy day. None of the seeds we planted last Wednesday have come up, but that would have been a miracle. They need more time. It's supposed to rain tonight. I planted kale and arugula in Garden #1 where the Roma tomatoes used to be. Trying to plant different vegetables in order to regenerate and amend the soil.

Reading and researching Root-knot nematodes, of which I had many this year. All the tomato plants, save one, and many of the other vegetables, had these bulbous protuberances. Not good. It's hard to get rid of them, but French Marigolds help. Must plant the marigolds among the tomatoes next year. Also, pull out all the infected roots and turn the soil, in order to expose any remaining roots to the cold weather, so they will die.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's a beautiful day today!

It's going to be 70 degrees today. What a great day to garden! I'm going to pull out the last 2 tomato plants-Romas, add some top soil, maybe pull out some fresh compost and plant some spinach and lettuce.

Well, it turned out that we planted a lot of vegetables. Rodney created a raised area by adding 2 bags of topsoil in Garden #1 and planted 3 or 4 rows of carnival carrots. Juna and I amended the area next to it with 2 bags of topsoil and planted one double row of bok choy, crispy winter greens, Batavian endive, spinach, mesclun greens, salad bowl blend. Ginger worked in the raised bed and added topsoil. Then she planted purple green beans and Walla Walla sweet onions.

A good day for planting. And it's supposed to rain this weekend.