Saturday, January 31, 2009

Raised Bed--October View

In my photo archives, I discovered this October 5 view of the raised bed featured in the blog of January 16. The onions are the only vegetable common to both views. Two small trees planted on the south side of this bed could make it a bit shady, but tomatoes were grown, along with beets and kale. With a plot this serious, no doubt other vegetables have already harvested.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Artists' Garden in Hoquiam, WA

This amazing garden has been created by two artists; they work in painted ceramics and metal with a collaborative business called Gumaelius Studios. The first photo shows their self portrayal on a sign that is attached to the chimney. The location is Hoquiam, WA, about two hours by car west of Seattle and 30 minutes from the Pacific Ocean. The climate is coastal, mild and damp year around (even more so than Vancouver), permitting vegetables to flourish as late as November 22 when these photos were taken. The front yard has some non-edibles such as rhododendrons, but most of the land is devoted to vegetables. A peek into the north-facing back yard showed thick clover along with a greenhouse containing ripening tomatoes. The large sculpture is striking and a practical support for growing fennel. Note the metal "hoops" that define the borders of the garden and that allow plants to grow vertically on strings.

Two vegetables that thrive in the fall are shown in the next two pictures: mizuna (a type of Japanese mustard) growing in a clump, and the purple sprouting broccoli providing interesting color contrast. The last photo shows a thriving artichoke and creeping thyme, attempting to cover up the brick walkway.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Vegetables Growing (?) in January

No, it's not a leek--it's a garlic, still alive after being covered by the heavy December snowfall. The size is small, so the five garlic plants can barely be seen in the next photo.

Mizuna and parsley are still alive but a little floppy in these raised beds in a south-facing corner lot. The next two photos show the "spinach lover's garden", now nearly snow-free. Note the raised rows mulched with finely chopped leaves. I wonder what will be planted there.

The "Intensive Front Garden plus Boulevard", the 2nd oldest entry in this blog, has kale emerging from the snow pile on the boulevard.
Thick fog for over a week prevented the snow from melting in their front garden despite its southern exposure. The tall Brussels sprouts probably escaped being completely covered by the snow. Note the handmade bamboo fence.
This leafy green vegetable appears to thrive in the snow. Does anyone know the name of it? It's the same plant as in the "Sunny Lane Garden".

The first dandelion of the season!! Found near the front of a house on West 16th Avenue.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Raised Bed--January View

The snow is melting on this raised bed in a front yard. On the right edge, there is a row of onions. Peeking out on the other edges appears to be a cover crop of rye grass.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Growing Corn

Vancouver does not have the ideal climate for growing corn, yet this garden in East Vancouver has an entire border of corn in its front yard, still looking surprisingly green on November 20.

On December 7, I spotted these brown cornstalks in the front yard of a house on the west side of Vancouver. There appears to have been a vegetable garden here. A more fastidious gardener would have removed the stalks, but that would have prevented the view of the corn stalks in the snow of December 24.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Sidewalk Garden of Basil

Anyone familiar with Vancouver would know that this fascinating duplex is located in some other city. In fact, it is likely that the house was built before Vancouver existed. It is rented out to quite a number of residents, some of whom are interested in growing vegetables. Since the back yard is quite shady, and the front yard barely exists, one resident has taken to growing various types of basil in containers on the sunny front sidewalk. (The above photo taken in January does not show the placement of the pots of basil.) Remarkably, no one walking by disturbed the plants, although the gardener suspects that a tomato plant would provide more temptation.

Spinach Lover's Garden Under Snow

You can barely make out the ridges of snow over the rows of cloches that are protecting the spinach. The gardener probably did not expect such a heavy snowfall to occur and to remain for so many weeks in Vancouver. Typically there is rain in December. Let's hope that the spinach survives! (Refer to previous blog: Spinach Lover's Garden Under Development.)