Friday, June 12, 2009

What's growing in my garden this year

Thought I'd make a quick list of what we have growing this year in our small 33'x 20' urban backyard (part of which is patio). It doesn't get any more local than this!

  • Raspberries

  • Gooseberries (although they are in even worse shape than they were here)

  • Blackberries (new this year so won't fruit until next year)

  • Potatoes - yukon gold (using the tower method)

  • Beans - hopi black, scarlet runner, royal burgundy, thibodeau du comte beauce, ozark

  • Peas - spanish skyscraper, sugar snap

  • Broccoli

  • Eggplants (planting this weekend)

  • Green peppers

  • Broad beans

  • Tomatoes - italian plum, orange cherry (not sure of the proper name), brandywine, plus some other seedlings of various types that got a bit frosted but I'm still going to try to squeeze in somewhere)

  • Spearmint

  • Peppermint

  • Thyme

  • Anise hyssop

  • Lemon balm

  • Sage (not sure what kind)

  • Oregano

  • Parsley (curly)

(yes I also appear to be growing pests!)
  • Caterpillars (on gooseberries - picked off my hand - ineffective)

  • Black fly /aphids (on broad beans - going to try spraying with soapy water but am open to suggestions!)

  • Mystery pest (on raspberries but seems to be under control)

  • Earwigs (on everything - don't seem to be doing too much damage so am not worried)

  • Flea beetle (on the beans - going to plant some sacrificial sorrel this weekend)

  • Squirrels - the bane of my existence

What's growing in your garden?


Anonymous said...

i know refigerators are power hogs, and we use our small very carefully. but i am curious about freezers, and ice, too. if you open and close the door rarely, that must help; but it takes a lot of power to freeze and keep things. what is the comparison, i wonder? canning is also an energy intensive project. i bet drying is more energy efficient way to keep things, but frozen stuff is more to my taste. of course if the power is out for long, that's a lot of eating in a short time...or a big neighborhood party.

what do you think? any idea where i could go to see figures?


Green Grrl said...

Hi kj,

Good questions! There is a lot to think about when attempting carbon footprint reduction huh?

I've found that figures are pretty hard to come by (in terms of what is best) because it depends entirely on usage.

Take the kWh info that comes with a fridge. That's a best case scenario figure. If you put your fridge next to you oven or if your house is hot or if you put hot/warm stuff in your fridge, or if you open the door a lot, it will use a lot more electricity.

I've thought a lot about the extra work the freezer does to make the ice. I figure we still come out ahead though since:
-we keep our freezer in our basement which is at 15 degrees C or cooler year round
-we only open it once a day
-it's a top loader
-we only make ice in the freezer part of the year (when its cold enough we make ice outside)

The other factor for us was that we had the freezer anyway. Since we still eat some meat we buy it all locally. Which usually means we have to buy a lot at one time, so the freezer is kind of essential. Also I agree with you that in some cases frozen is the best option for storage (e.g. berries, peas, beans).

Re: canning and dehydrating, I must admit that part of the reason I do this is for food security. It is possible that my canning uses more electricity than say a commercial canning operation, but I wonder if even so my canning is better since I use green electricity?

I def. don't have the answers. I'm sort of muddling through. Trying things to see what works. :-)

The biggest test I use is if my electricity use goes down. And it def. has. Check out the 'Electricity' link at the right. I try to regularly post my electricity bills.

Irma said...

What's in my garden? Peas, peas, ane more peas. Five kinds of tomatoes. Tons of garlic, lots of onions. Four potato plants. Thyme. Lots of carrots. Did I mention tomatoes? Bush beans.

My gardening space is limited (for now) so although there are lots of veggies and fruits I'd like to try, I have to be realistic regarding how much space is currently available and plant accordingly.