For the second phase of my end-of-season review, I’m looking back at what seeds I planted and how they did. And I’m concluding that 2014 was something of a misfire year.
Hot weather in May and again in July sent many of my early greens to seed. This includes the Rocket arugula, Garden Ferns Italian lettuce, Garnet Oakleaf lettuce, Bloomsdale spinach and Rosa di Treviso radicchio. The Michihili Chinese cabbage was not at all what I had pictured, and I won’t do that again.
I moved my carrots to another location because maggots had become a problem, and they didn’t like it so I had only a small yield. Speaking of maggots, most of my Dragon radishes and all of my Walla Walla onions fell prey to them. On the other hand, my garlic did very well.
The Decicco broccoli, Amazing cauliflower, and Early Jersey Wakefield cabbage all didn’t sprout well. I had to re-plant a couple of times and still ended up with nothing edible. I also had poor sprouting on my Homemade Pickles cucumbers. The De Bourbon cucumbers I borrowed from the seed library didn’t sprout at all.
The Orange Blaze pepper plants I bought did fairly well, but the Miniature Chocolate peppers I had started from seed sulked and never got very tall. The Jalapeno pepper and Cherry tomato, which I also bought, stayed small and produced very little fruit. The Cosmonaut Volkov tomatoes did better, although I think they got too much sun. Most years I chop and freeze up to ten pounds of tomatoes, but this year I didn’t freeze any.
Weren’t there any bright spots in my garden? Of course. The Howden pumpkins and Scallop Bush squash did nicely. Table Queen acorn squash were dug up by a cat and only one sprouted. However, it did give me a couple of nice, small fruit. Golden Bantam corn, ironically, did not get enough sun and was slow to sprout. I froze some nice small ears from that.
In the bean and pea patch, I was happy with the Sugar Snap peas and very happy with the Blue Lake pole beans. Of the greens, my White Russian kale, Red Sails lettuce, and Parris Island Romaine lettuce were stand-outs. The Detroit Dark Red beets yielded well despite grubs mining the undersides of the leaves.
Elsewhere in the yard, my Jersey Knight asparagus is really coming into its own. The Heritage blackberries continue to thrive. The fragrant roses and sunflowers are burgeoning as well. The And I continue to be pleased with the White Dutch clover I had seeded into the bare parts of my lawn during 2013. It is filling in the gaps nicely, and the flowers are great for bees.
Next week, I’ll look ahead to my plans for next year.