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last month5 min read


Hello, all you gardeners out there! Welcome to my garden. There's a lot going on here as you can see. Let's get right into it and get our hands dirty, shall we?
What you saw above were wild woodland strawberries growing amongst some good neighbors including thyme and garlic. The garlic helps repel pests like aphids and spider mites. Since these strawberries came from the forest, they put out a lot of stolons (runners) which become new plants but I think pretty soon they'll overrun my garden!


Last year they spent the whole season developing foliage so we got lots of blooms this season. They're mostly done blooming and will now be developing their fruits. I just hope the squirrels don't eat them all!
Another plant that is about to bloom is this Fava bean.


This was the first plant that went from indoors to the ground outside. We're having a mostly cool season here and Fava beans like that. Hopefully they'll set some nice pods. I didn't get any last year despite the numerous black and white flowers. It must have been a pollinator problem. I have the plant that is pictured and about 4 more scattered about.
Now that we're finally on the subject of beans, we can discuss the kidney beans.


This is a little section of the garden where I planted kidney beans. Important Tip: to keep them safe from squirrels who like to dig them up and pill bugs that eat the seedlings I sprinkle some used coffee grounds. Unfortunately, this doesn't protect against people stepping on them. Some will inevitably die and have to be replaced so plan accordingly! (You can also see some cilantro growing in between the beans. These came up from seeds dropped last year.)


These are a set of younger kidney beans I planted in an empty patch between the perennials, oregano and sage. I liberally sprinkled the area with coffee grounds and had to reapply for several days due to the rain washing it away. I think only one seed didn't sprout so I attribute my success to the coffee.
Last year I planted a whole smorgasbord of beans but this year I just wanted to plant kidney beans. It was too many beans to keep track of last year and I didn't want them to interbreed so I just stuck with one variety this time.


In the center of the garden there was room for a single tomato plant. Should I let it grow feral or prune the suckers? Which will make it more productive? A miniature spear of asparagus also popped up right next to it. It must have come from the crowns I planted last year! I thought that they didn't take so this was a surprise!


Just like the tomato, next is another plant from the nightshade family: the potato! The potatoes growing here (and another smaller bunch) are all that's left of my purple potatoes. Most were in containers and didn't survive the freezing and thawing last winter. Since I was Mexico, no one harvested them.
The next plant to be showcased was briefly mentioned earlier but not shown.


Thyme! Being a member of the mint family, it is a great herb to cook with and a wonderful companion plant. As you can see, it is in bloom. Earlier this season I trimmed it to about half its size. I might have to do that to the oregano, too.
I'm still paying the price for letting my wild lettuce go to seed last year. Its seeds are like that of dandelion so they flew everywhere and I'm still pulling them out. The taste was too bitter for my taste and I couldn't effectively harvest the sap to smoke so I will not be growing this again. As I was tossing the weedy plants into the compost pile I noticed my compost bin was full of tomato plants!


I will be planting most of them in another planter or someplace else and probably just leave two to grow in the bin. Tomatoes are one of the few plants that can actually grow in pure compost. I'm excited to see how they do because I didn't think the compost was fully done.
I recently shared an update on my experimental beans growing indoors but we now have another development!


The bean dubbed "Wang's Black Bean" has turned out to be a bush bean. After a while in which growth was stalling I'm finally able to Mahe this assumption. This came as sort of a surprise because I thought it was going to grow into a pole type like Wang's red bean. Well, now I know.
That's it for my garden journal. This is an entry for @simplymike 's garden journal challenge so if you're a gardener too then you souks check out the original post here:
Happy gardening!


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