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jamiemaw

The Coastal Gardening Topic

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I admit I'm pretty scared to take the project on, but it's intriguing, no?

I would say it's definitely doable.

We've had a blueberry bush that has been stunted for the last two years due to lack of sun. It has since been planted in a sunny location. The bush isn't more than 3 or 4 feet tall and the roots weren't particularly big. I'm already seeing some blossoms, so we should be able to pick a handful [edited] of blueberries this year. (Last year we only got a couple of tiny blueberries.)

I think you could also do gooseberries on a sunny balcony. We have one bush that was also moved to a sunny location this year, and it's not very tall, maybe 2 feet. We can already see the fruit, and the foliage is nice.


Edited by sanrensho (log)

Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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Intriguing indeed. I am definitely going to see if this might be workable on my balcony. Thanks for the idea!

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What I really want is some chervil.

I'm with you there. I grew some chervil a few years ago when it was included in a mesculin/herb mix, so it should be easy to grow from seed. Unfortunately, my local nursery no longer carries the same seed pack.

I found a packet of Curled Chervil seeds at Hollyfield's on Granville Island. The packet was produced by Richters and cost a $1.50 - and I planted it in early March and the plant is huge already! I have it in a small pot on my window sill, as unfortunately, our place in the West End doesn't have a balcony, but it's thriving and doing well. (And I still have over half the packet of seeds left!)

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I think I've finished the majority of my spring planting, so here's the full list of what's going in my garden this year. It looks like more than it is. Most of it I've never planted before, so I'll be darn pleased if even half of it turns out OK (doesn't die by my black thumbs).

Fruits from previous seasons: Blueberries, currants (red), gooseberries, raspberries

Fruits new this season: Black currants, black raspberries (if I can still get some from Rona)

Vegetables from previous seasons: Rhubarb

Vegetables newly started this season (majority never planted before):

Beans (runner/garbonzo—starts)

Brussel sprouts (starts)

Cabbage (savoy—starts)

Chard (rainbow—starts)

Cucumber (straight eight—starts)

Eggplant (ichiban/bambino—starts)

Gai lan (seeds)

Japanese greens (shungiku/shinshu kyomizuna, one other—seeds)

Kale (starts)

Pac choi (starts)

Peas (sugar snap—starts and seeds)

Peppers (waiting to get the same ones I got last year from H Mart)

Salad greens (mesculin mix—seeds, arugula—starters)

Soybean (seeds)

Spinach (noble giant—starts)

Squash (buttercup—starts, kabocha—seeds)

Tomatoes (red cherry, sweet 100—starts)

Watercress (starts)

Yomogi (mugwort—received from friend)

Herbs from previous seasons: Marjoram (pot), mint (English, apple), oregano, rau ram, savory (winter), thyme (English)

Herbs, newly started this season: Basil (Genovese, Thai holy—seeds and starts), bay (starts) dill (starts), parsley (Italian—starts), rosemary (starts), shiso (waiting for Fujiya to stock this)

Disasters to report so far: The slugs got to my savoy cabbage and pretty much have killed my buttercup squash starts. Also considering leg traps to prevent my kids (or more specifically, their friends) from stepping on recently planted ground.


Edited by sanrensho (log)

Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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Disasters to report so far: The slugs got to my savoy cabbage and pretty much have killed my buttercup squash starts. Also considering leg traps to prevent my kids (or more specifically, their friends) from stepping on recently planted ground.

That is a great garden you are starting!

I hate slugs and crows...they eat everything! Can we setup a row of hair dryers to stop the slug advancement.


"There are two things every chef needs in the kitchen: fish sauce and duck fat" - Tony Minichiello

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That is a great garden you are starting!

Thanks, this will be an experimental year to see what actually grows and doesn't, and what is worthwhile in terms of actual production/effort.

So far, we've had a few salads of young greens (spinach/chard/kale/arugula/cabbage/pac choi) and I've got some herbs to work with. I'm hopeful that we'll have enough greens moving forward to keep us topped up most days. My main goal is to get access to a greater variety of greens without driving across town.

Due to space restrictions, I'm not planting space intensive crops or things that I can buy readily (carrots, onions, potatoes). At least, not this year.


Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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Was at Fujiya on Saturday and found Eggplant, Shiso and Chilly. They had a small selection. Ended up picking up some Chilly's and an Eggplant.

Our garden this year includes 6 different varieties of tomato, 3 types of eggplant, basil, sage, rosemary, thyme, chives, shiso (if we can find it), oregano, parsley ....

Fujiya will have (Japanese) green shiso plants once the weather warms up. I'll post when they become available. I also saw two types of shiso (green and purple) at the Maple Leaf Garden Centre in Lynn Valley, but the former appeared to be the Korean perilla with a purple tint to the leaves.

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Was at Fujiya on Saturday and found Eggplant, Shiso and Chilly. They had a small selection. Ended up picking up some Chilly's and an Eggplant.

Excellent, thanks! What I am really dying for is shishitou. Any chance those chili plants were actually shishitou peppers?


Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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Sarensho, in my experience all will do very well in our climate, except the brussels. It can be too warm for too long in the fall, when it should be cool and they will bolt and go to seed just as you think you are getting somewhere. Also, they taste better after a good, hard frost, which we barely get before January. :) When all else fails, just eat the green leaves like any other cabbage.

A great trap for slugs is a small yogourt container buried in the soil to the rim, then 1/2 full of beer. Just watch - the next morning you will come out and see it full of dead slugs, and your brassicas will love you for it.

Happy gardening! I, too, am done my spring planting and have saved extra room this year for tomatoes.

-- Matt.

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Almost all of my rosemary died off this year too, except for one.  It's funny, i've heard so many people say the same thing.  The laurel (bay) survived.  Last year I got a great mixed pot of basil from GardenWorks that lasted the whole summer.  My lovage is really coming along strong now.  What I really want is some chervil.

I'm late chiming in on this thread (been busy gardneing :raz: ) - my four year old rosemary survived the winter but bolted from a nice thick bushy plant into a stringy woody mess. Was it our challenging weather this winter that caused my problem and others'? Maybe I am not taking cuttings the right way? What is the best way to harvest rosemary so that it stays more compact and attractive?


Laura Fauman

Vancouver Magazine

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Thanks Matt for the slug suggestion. I need to get a bunch of cheap beer and try it over the weekend.

My wife just picked up a bunch of plants for me at Fujiya. They have two types of shiso, Japanese eggplant and cucumber, and togarashi peppers (didn't get it).

The pac choi has really perked up with this warm weather. Since my last post I will be planting the stuff from Fujiya, plus have planted various Japanese greens and a mesculin mix w/chervil. And a blackcurrant bush. Also thinking about adding more tomatoes, since they're going strong so far.


Edited by sanrensho (log)

Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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Awesome. A whole bunch of other people with rosemary issues! Great resource, thanks.


Laura Fauman

Vancouver Magazine

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I just harvested two delicious strawberries.

:laugh: I've had one.


Laura Fauman

Vancouver Magazine

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We now have kabocha seedlings popping up unexpectedly all over the place. Like asparagus, it feels like Christmas every day. (If you've ever seen an asparagus patch in action, you know what I mean.) The seeds got into the ground courtesy of our compost, and our family's regular consumption of kabocha squash.

We've also got a few other seedlings of indeterminate origin, so it should be interesting to see what they develop into.

Laura: You can prune that rosemary by taking out the lower branches and forming a ball if you want. That's what my neighbor did.

http://www.papagenos.com/blog/template_permalink.asp?id=140


Edited by sanrensho (log)

Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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We now have kabocha seedlings popping up unexpectedly all over the place. Like asparagus, it feels like Christmas every day. (If you've ever seen an asparagus patch in action, you know what I mean.) The seeds got into the ground courtesy of our compost, and our family's regular consumption of kabocha squash.

We've also got a few other seedlings of indeterminate origin, so it should be interesting to see what they develop into.

Laura: You can prune that rosemary by taking out the lower branches and forming a ball if you want. That's what my neighbor did.

http://www.papagenos.com/blog/template_permalink.asp?id=140

My rosemary is only about two feet wide and tall, and most of it is quite straggly, but the ends are very healthy and harvestable. Considering what I read on that gardening website (thanks mtigges) and here, it seems my rosemary was lucky to survive yet another winter without any protective intervention on my part. It's planted in my garden exposed to the elements year round!

I think I should wait until the end of the season and prune it all right back, give it some more love over the winter in the form of mulching or even a burlap wrap, and let it come back with new branches next spring. Meanwhile, it might be a bit unsightly, but I've still got gorgeous fresh rosemary for my cooking! And thanks for the pruning advice, sanresho, but given the state my rosemary is in, I'd have a hard time shaping this rosemary without losing all its leaves that are growing on its extremities.


Laura Fauman

Vancouver Magazine

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We now have kabocha seedlings popping up unexpectedly all over the place. Like asparagus, it feels like Christmas every day. (If you've ever seen an asparagus patch in action, you know what I mean.) The seeds got into the ground courtesy of our compost, and our family's regular consumption of kabocha squash.

We've also got a few other seedlings of indeterminate origin, so it should be interesting to see what they develop into.

Laura: You can prune that rosemary by taking out the lower branches and forming a ball if you want. That's what my neighbor did.

http://www.papagenos.com/blog/template_permalink.asp?id=140

My rosemary is only about two feet wide and tall, and most of it is quite straggly, but the ends are very healthy and harvestable. Considering what I read on that gardening website (thanks mtigges) and here, it seems my rosemary was lucky to survive yet another winter without any protective intervention on my part. It's planted in my garden exposed to the elements year round!

I think I should wait until the end of the season and prune it all right back, give it some more love over the winter in the form of mulching or even a burlap wrap, and let it come back with new branches next spring. Meanwhile, it might be a bit unsightly, but I've still got gorgeous fresh rosemary for my cooking! And thanks for the pruning advice, sanresho, but given the state my rosemary is in, I'd have a hard time shaping this rosemary without losing all its leaves that are growing on its extremities.

Since those tips are so healthy you might consider air-layering a few branches. What kind of mulch are you using? I live in the damp too and have found quarter-minus gravel is a great mulch for my Mediterranean plants.


Shelley: Would you like some pie?

Gordon: MASSIVE, MASSIVE QUANTITIES AND A GLASS OF WATER, SWEETHEART. MY SOCKS ARE ON FIRE.

Twin Peaks

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I discovered today that mint and basil don't play too well together. My mint is aggressively taking over the soil and the poor basil is suffering. Even though the basil is listed as "Queen Basil" the mint is paying absolutely no respect to it at all.

Mint is going to have to get put in isolation. On the flip side I've been able to make lots of tasty drinks as of late.


"There are two things every chef needs in the kitchen: fish sauce and duck fat" - Tony Minichiello

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I discovered today that mint and basil don't play too well together. My mint is aggressively taking over the soil and the poor basil is suffering.  Even though the basil is listed as "Queen Basil" the mint is paying absolutely no respect to it at all.

Mint is like the borg, it will take over everything if given the opportunity. Fortunately, it's also easy to rip out as necessary and/or replant in another location.


Edited by sanrensho (log)

Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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most species of mint don't belong in the ground in a culinary garden. rather, put them in a pot, and make sure the pot is placed on concrete, or it will grow out the bottom and take over. contrary to what is said above, rhizomous mint is not very easy to get rid of. no rhizome is, it's not as bad as bamboo for sure, but don't put it in the ground.

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War has been waged on the slugs. Beer is in the ground. (Finally, a use for Molson Canadian.) Two nightly sticking sessions to dispose of the slugs and even the kids have been recruited as paid bounty hunters.

I noticed that the beer traps seem to work with big slugs, but not necessarily the little baby ones.


Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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They're not of age. Aha ha ha.

Molson Canadian has another use if a "friend" left some behind. Braising bratwurst from Oyama with onions or sauerkraut.

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We now have kabocha seedlings popping up unexpectedly all over the place. Like asparagus, it feels like Christmas every day. (If you've ever seen an asparagus patch in action, you know what I mean.) The seeds got into the ground courtesy of our compost, and our family's regular consumption of kabocha squash.

We've also got a few other seedlings of indeterminate origin, so it should be interesting to see what they develop into.

Laura: You can prune that rosemary by taking out the lower branches and forming a ball if you want. That's what my neighbor did.

http://www.papagenos.com/blog/template_permalink.asp?id=140

My rosemary is only about two feet wide and tall, and most of it is quite straggly, but the ends are very healthy and harvestable. Considering what I read on that gardening website (thanks mtigges) and here, it seems my rosemary was lucky to survive yet another winter without any protective intervention on my part. It's planted in my garden exposed to the elements year round!

I think I should wait until the end of the season and prune it all right back, give it some more love over the winter in the form of mulching or even a burlap wrap, and let it come back with new branches next spring. Meanwhile, it might be a bit unsightly, but I've still got gorgeous fresh rosemary for my cooking! And thanks for the pruning advice, sanresho, but given the state my rosemary is in, I'd have a hard time shaping this rosemary without losing all its leaves that are growing on its extremities.

Since those tips are so healthy you might consider air-layering a few branches. What kind of mulch are you using? I live in the damp too and have found quarter-minus gravel is a great mulch for my Mediterranean plants.

Can you explain 'air-layering'? I'm thinking it's pretty much self-explanatory, but . . .. :wink:

I haven't mulched my herbs before, but I started composting this spring so hope that by the end of the fall I'll have some badass compost to work with.


Laura Fauman

Vancouver Magazine

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