Saturday, July 25, 2015

Onion harvest

It's been a weird growing season.  Overall a productive season so far, although some tomato plants have taken a hit.   Since it hasn't rained for nearly a week, which is notable, the garlic was dug out early this week.   Today it was time to dig up the onions, which were flattened by a passing storm about 10 days ago.  The onion patch, about 20 square feet, was a weedy mess:

A pitchfork was brought to the battle scene, but it turned out that most of the onions had 'popped out' of the ground and could be removed with a twist of the hand.  Some of them needed a little assist with a hand digger, but the job was easy enough.  Amazingly, after nearly a week of abundant sunshine the soil is still very damp, although no longer saturated.  These are Ruby Ring onions, a variety I really like, which means Johnny's will no longer carry them next year.  In the left of the picture are a few Red Tropea onions.

The onions are very nice sized this year, and mostly uniform.  I'm very happy with this, it looks like about 20 pounds.  Onions from seed are very labor intensive at the start - the seeding is tedious - but once in the ground don't need much attention. 

Around the garden, the slicing tomatoes look awful.  After weeks of cloudy, rainy weather they just never resumed growth.  Usually the cages would be full of foliage at this point.  Still they will give me some tomatoes, although I don't expect them to produce for long.  At least the sauce tomatoes are doing well.  I don't know if these plants are afflicted with early blight or bacterial spot, but whatever it is it is taking its toll.

This bed is a hodgepodge of plants.  It began as an overwintering bed for spinach, with a plastic cover through the winter months, and it grew the first set of cole crops.  As the spring crops came out other crops were put in.  Of course it needed, and got, more fertilizer, spinach and brassicas are heavy feeders.  Starting from the left there is a row of beets, a row of Tropea onions (now on the drying rack), a Genovese summer squash, two Millionaire okra plants, and a row of Provider beans.

Summer squash are considered bushes but they always tend to fall over and grow in one direction a bit.  I directed this one towards the onions, now out.  I'm hoping the beets will mature before the squash grows to them.

The Calypso cucumbers are still producing an amazing amount of cucumbers.  For some reason I made the trellis out of garden fence with 2" x 3" openings.  It's not enough to reach through so I have to set a board across the bed and put one foot on the board in order to pick most of them.  This one grew through the trellis and got stuck.  I was just able to push it back through.  In a few more hours it would have been ruined.

It's getting easy to overlook a cucumber now that the trellis is covered in leaves.  I should have gotten this one yesterday.  No loss though, it was still green enough to pickle.


Daphne Gould said...

I don't really have a great trellis for my cukes. Just strings going up and down. It isn't as good as one that goes sideways too. Occasionally I have to tie them. Though I suppose I never get my cukes caught in the trellis that way.

Unknown said...

Your onions and cucumbers a beautiful! I am going to try growing onion from seed. I have only tried sets, and they didn't really do well. I am also thinking of trying Calypso cucumbers. They look like they would taste great. You've gotten a nice crop from them. How many plants did you sow?

Mark Willis said...

I empathise concerning the tomatoes. Even when the other crops are good (like your onions), somehow the growing season is not complete without a good crop of tomatoes.

gardenvariety-hoosier said...

Audrey - I put in 4 Calypso plants and 1 Diva.

Margaret said...

Your onions look wonderful - I just harvested a good chunk of mine this past week. It's such a satisfying crop. That's so sad about the tomatoes - I hope that your sauce tomatoes continue at a good clip and somewhat make up for your lack of slicing tomatoes.

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