I have been harvesting Honeyberries, Saskatoons, Black Currants, Raspberries, Tomatoes and my first Blackberries this past week!
Berries! Berries! Everywhere! I am a busy bee in my garden – or I was. Only the raspberries and cherries remain! Last year I planted blackberries only because I didn’t know what I was doing. They were tagged Black Raspberries. I have two varietals of yellow raspberries, and two varietals of red, so black would make a great addition and I had never heard of them. I was assured they were not black berries. But, they are. And they are beautiful, but grow like weeds, are working to overtake my raspberries, and last year I got only three the entire season as our zone is too short to get all of the fruit ripe and harvested before the cold sets in. I was also assured that this would not be a problem when buying the bush. Vanja’s mother has the exact same plant in her yard in Bijelina, Bosnia, and they are prolific suppliers of berries. She is in a zone 6 climate!
My raspberries were much later than usual this year and not very prolific. I usually get an ice cream bucket full a day every day they are in season from my “hedge”, but this year am getting about aÂ half litre every two days. One kind of the golden raspberries is hardy and lovely and very similar in flavour and shape to the red Bourne. The other is so sweet and fragile that it is only good eaten right off of the bush.
I planted them between garages where most people have decorative rocks. (What a waste of agricultural land! 🙂 ) I did ask my neighbour first, and they were completely happy with the idea.
Below, you will see the end of June garden and under it, the end of July garden. Look at how high the tomatoes grew!
Again, below, as in most of the following photos, there is the end of June garden followed by the same location at the end of July. Every morning, as I walk through my garden, I am sure as I stand there, I see it grow before my very eyes. Just like Jack’s beanstalk! Look at the splendour!
We transplanted my honeyberries, or haskaps, this year, so the harvest was basically what you see in my hand. How disappointing! I thought we did it early enough to not interfere with their production. I was motivated to work with these this year as I expressed a lack of enthusiasm for their flavour and was bombarded with disagreeing friends. So, I was eager to try their recipes. Next year.
Above, you see my sweetpeas are just rearing their heads at the end of June. That is when the honeyberries bare fruit, too! It really is fantastic to have such early baring fruit in the yard. Below, the corner with the honeyberry bushes. On the left, you will see the June photo with the sweetpeas just out of the ground and on the right you will see how they have grown in only four weeks!
The lilacs were so beautiful in June. Oh, my! And the Columbine: such a gorgeous wild forest flower. And the delphiniums and Nasturtiums so lovely in July!
The topiary lilac was so fragrant and delicate in June. It was still flowering for the wedding July 2.
I am sure you can see which photo is of which month. The Hosta’s bloomed at the end of July and are still blooming, but the Borage shocked me. Below, left, you will see the rhubarb against the fence next to the Hosta. To the right, you will see how much the Borage that didn’t exist at the end of June grew by the end of July!
My lettuce has come back twice and the second batch has gone to seed, purposefully. I wanted to try the flowers and more mature greens. Above, lower right, is a mustard flower.
Below, again, another crop of sweetpeas in a different corner, and to the top right, my yellow beets at the end of June.
Above, lower right: isn’t it phenomenal what grows in only four weeks?
The garlic, leafy greens, and tomatoes from another side of the yard. By the end of July, the tomatoes were almost as tall as the lilac tree!
Below, you can see the beginnings of the Borage I mentioned earlier, and to the right how massive it became in only four weeks. It is a little prickly, but the flowers are edible and so pretty perched on and in things.
I mist my Miss Kim lilac already. I could smell her all over the yard. Her delicate petals are the perfect lilac for a wedding!
We have a sidewalk poured at the side of our house, and the weeping apple greets you as you enter the yard.
In June, the lilacs, the Pinks, the Columbine, and the chive flowers were all in purple and blue hues. I love that combination in a Spring garden with the lively greens.
The wild geranium blossoms, above, are always vying for attention as they crowd their lovely heads into a perfect dome each year.
And the Saskatoons! I am actually baking a Saskatoon pie, today that will be posted next week, I hope. They are incredible. I have made galettes with them already.
The black currants were as large as Concord grapes this year. I adore them. I haven’t had time to make anything with them yet, but they are frozen and waiting.
The Evan’s Cherry tree had few blossoms this year, but even the few will be enough for a hearty sauce of dessert of some kind. I cannot wait to see this tree loaded!
Some people have started picking their cherries already, and it is almost mid August. Mine can wait until next week. They only develop more flavour as they develop more colour. When they are perfect, the actually pit themselves as you pull them. The pit stays on the tree with the stem, and the pitted fruit goes into the bowl!
I planted Swiss Chard for mom and dad this year as they love it. But, most of it got over shadowed by bushes and shrubs. They have had one good meal with it, but that is all. I will do better next year.
This is my first year growing leeks. I have used a couple of giant ones already. YUM! One in a Pea and Lettuce Risotto !
I miss my beautiful Chive flowers already. They are gone. The green tomatoes are turning red!
The carrots are coming, and the celery has been a joy! Another first for me, and whenever I need a stalk, there it is: living in my garden. Can’t get fresher than that!
The Purple Spirea added to the hues in June.
I even candied the lilac petals. Well, some of them. They were actually delish, too! They will forever remind me of my grandmother, Maude. I love them.
I am learning to not pull up dead looking plants in the Spring. The Pinks are like the Lavender. They look like leftover brush from the year before, and then suddenly, the green tenders shoot up through the old brush, and they thrive.
See how tiny they are, below, right, in June? At the end of July, the growth against the fence was startling!
I do think the young June garden is prettier than the August garden. At the end of July, the last lettuces were harvested and the pots ready for the second planting.
I had so many leafy greens that I also made a tasty Lettuce Soup! We had lovely salads every day, too!
Below are my herbs. This is what I call my Kitchen Garden. I love just stepping out to clip the fresh herbs for whatever i need.
Below you will see the wild Geranium in June. In July, the Sugar Pumpkin has taken over that spot!
Did you know that Begonia petals are also edible? Brittany Watt taught me that. Taste them! They are very sorrel-like: citrusy, tart, and juicy, too! Not delicious on their own, but really tasty and the potential for their use is endless!
In the front of the house, my first Dalhia was blooming at the end of July. Absolutely stunning.
Rhe mint and basil are in the flower bed in the front as it is sunniest there and they are much happier in the sun!
That hedge was planted 8 years ago and is still so small. Last year it started to thrive, and this year it is doing better. There are also more tomatoes behind the Weeping Caragana in the front bed. The Arctic Evergreen Primrose blooms in March (but this year it was May) and then again in October… (border plant in second photo below).
The Harcourt apple tree (middle picture, above) is not baring as many apples as last year, but that is OK. We can handle the juicing every other year. I still have some left from last year! So, even now, almost two weeks later, everything has changed. If you are interested, you will see it all, soon enough! There are many more posts to follow about what I do with my garden harvest. This is a great photo journal for me for next year, too.