We had several days of on and off thunderstorms rolling through, which resulted in a lot of rain. Although we've been watering the garden every morning for the past couple months, the amount of (weed) growth down there just in the last week during and after all that rain has been incredible! We've got tomatoes and cucumbers, still very small, but far earlier than last year. In fact I don't even know if we ended up with a cucumber last year at all. I would love to claim that the plant growth is due to the chicken manure we added last fall, but I suspect some of it has to do with the better weather this year, and the better job of regular weeding and watering I've been able to do.
Of course in addition to the weeds, we have other green things growing quickly too. Like this little grasshopper. The chickens have been seeming to do a good job of keeping the grasshopper numbers in the field between the coop and the garden down in numbers from last year, but within the garden fence, where the chickens don't go, there have been some areas where the grasshoppers have been surprisingly prevalent. They seem to love sitting on my cilantro patch and are just shredding the leaves as the plants go to seed. I think we'll still get lots of seed, but its been astonishing seeing the grasshoppers just sit so densely in that patch.
We've been harvesting tubs of raspberries and the last of the shell peas. I was dismayed to find what I am fairly certain are pea weevils. I'm thinking of devoting a whole post to them in the next week or so as I learn more and decide on a management strategy to avoid or reduce their presence in the garden next year. We have gotten a lot of shell peas though; I've frozen 2 batches of peas in the freezer after blanching, for use as a side dish or an addition to a couple of pasta dishes we make. I think there may be one more smaller batch tonight as well, before we pull the plants and feed them to the chickens, or wait a bit and feed them to the pig in the next couple weeks.
Well, that's the mid summer tour, how is your garden space doing this year?