We had a couple of really hot days in May, which we thought might be too much for our new plantlings out in the garden, but the amount of May rain kept the plants happy and thriving (with just a few additional waterings from the hose). Currently, all the early tulips have bloomed, as have the Japonica, Forcythia, and most of the irises. The day lilies and lamb’s ears have started sending up their flowering stalks. They should start to flower in another week or so. The peonies popped a week ago, but were battered around a bit by a thunderstorm. We harvested as many as we could and brought them inside to enjoy.
The new raised-bed vegetable garden really took off last month. The tomatillos and tomatoes flowered in mid-May and have started to fruit. The early peas were true to their name. The pods formed and we have already had our first harvest (ie, standing in the garden and eating them right out of the pod). The zucchinis have flowered but the fruit has yet to form. We have learned that zucchinis, while often thought of as a vegetable, is actually an immature fruit.
We acquired some winter melon seedlings when we were last in NY. They have been planted and are getting acclimated to their new home. Hopefully, they will establish themselves and provide us with a few good size gourds. If they do take, we’ll try to grow them every year as Winter melons are great for use in soups and curry dishes.
The herb section has really done well. The basil and parsley we started from seed are doing great. We also added a few other (rosemary, oregano, lavender) plants to fill out the area. At the far left end of the bed, we dug up a rogue strawberry plant from another part of the garden and dropped it in to see how it would do. To our amazement, it took immediately and have already fruited.
We did notice that our neighbor’s large maple tree does shade most of our grow bed in the late afternoon. Next year we’ll move the grow bed forward a few feet to give it a few more hours of direct sunlight. All in all, we are really happy with the progress of the container garden. This is definitely the best vegetable garden we’ve had ever. If we had known it was so easy, we would started a container garden years ago.