Vertical Garden – Week 14

My how I have gotten behind on my posts (and picture-taking) of the vertical garden we are trying out this year.  Unfortunately it has been quite neglected over the past month as we have been away from home a lot (more than I had ever anticipated when we first came up with this idea).  Despite the neglect, the carrots, strawberries, peppers and tomatoes have still been thriving.  The dill, cucumbers and zucchini seemed to have been at least slightly set back by the lack of watering and the aphid infestation I have just discovered.  I pulled the dill plant right out as it had been overtaken by aphids (it was crawling with them- the entire plant was covered).  They then seemed to move onto the peas which I also got rid of today after taking the pictures as they weren’t looking so great.  Sadly, my rhubarb plant (which I had high hopes for) hasn’t looked that great all summer.  It starts growing a new stalk, with a nice green leaf, then the leaf gets yellow, wilts, and then the stalk dies off.  If anyone has any idea what is going on with that, I would love some input.

Despite the lack of watering (as we were gone for a week and a half and the garden wasn’t watered for a solid week of that-oops!), the hardier vegetables and fruits still seem to be doing good.  The peppers have even started growing.  The strawberries have been taking off and sending off shoots all over the place and producing lots of delicious strawberries.

Despite some of the setbacks I’ve been experiencing with the vertical garden lately in terms of aphids taking over and my zucchinis not seeming to do much (I’ve pollinated them, but they still only grow to about an inch or two, then start turning yellow and begin to rot on the plant) I am still pretty happy with the overall results. The kids love having fresh fruit and veggies out of the garden. Every time we go out to play they are asking for peas, carrots, strawberries (these are their favorites). And when we bring a cucumber in my daughter would eat the whole “pickle” (as she calls them) if we would let her.

It’s been a great learning experience and I love being able to go out to the yard to get some garden fresh food. I’m thinking next year these boxes may be filled with less of a variety. I’m thinking of sticking to strawberries, carrots, peas, and maybe cucumbers as these seem to be family favorites. I’ll probably cut back on the amount of tomatoes as I would like more room for the things the kids seem to love the most. I love the idea of growing my own peppers, but they seem to take a long time to get going and I am worried frost may get to them before they become big enough to harvest.

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