July 16, 2016

Heirloom Vegetable Plants in the No Dig Permaculture Garden

Artichoke Plants
 We're now in mid-July and the heirloom vegetable garden is thriving.  Last night's dinner featured four fresh artichokes from the garden.  Dee-lish.  Amazingly, the artichokes are the first vegetables I've harvested from the garden.  Artichokes are a perennial vegetable so that has given them a head start over the tomatoes and cucumbers.  I have planted more perennial vegetables this year, so that should help with early summer harvests in subsequent years.

These artichoke plants are ready for dividing.  When they stop flowering I will split them up and hope they survive another winter.

Here's a tiny bird enjoying the light rain.  He's sitting on the garden fence post.  Milkweed and tomato plants are in the background.  Our wood rack is seen at the side.  No sign of monarch butterflies yet in my eastern Ontario garden.

There are a few tiny pea pods growing and a few flowers showing.  The vines have grown up about four feet tall to the top of the trellis.  The cucumber plants are growing at the base of the pea vines.  So far I've only seen one female flower out of all the cucumber plants.

These are growing in the new garden bed that was started lasagna style.  In all the photos you can see mulch added to the top of the soil.  It's been very dry here and mulch has made a huge difference in trapping in the moisture.  By adding mulch your adding a permaculture element to save water and to save time watering.

There are sunchokes, a perennial vegetable, in the background.  The tallest ones are about four foot tall and look very sturdy.  These plants are making a great privacy screen.

The beets are really growing well.  There are enough leaves that I can pick one here and there and cook them for dinner.  Some carrot tops are showing at the bottom of the photo.  I found that less than half the seeds I planted germinated.  I reseeded but hardly any grew.

You can see the different materials used to build this lasagna garden bed.  Some topsoil that I purchased, grass clippings to help trap the moisture, wood chips and leaves.

A sweet potato plant.  I hope the leaves will be cold resistant because I starting growing the slips too late.

A watermelon plant.  The kids chose to plant this.  I'm not sure if this is a great choice for Ontario but the weather has been  hot for many weeks now.  

Here are some rocket plants, a perennial vegetable, with a tomato leaning in on the right.  These were grown from seed.  They seem to be healthy, but aren't growing super fast.  It'll be interesting to see how big these plants get.  I've never eaten a leaf before, I hope it's mild enough that the whole family will like it.