After the chaos of December, I had great intentions of giving my veggie patch some TLC this month, especially early January as the office would be closed until the 6th and I could potter in the garden to my heart’s delight.
However, Mother Nature had a different idea for me! There was a week long heat wave with temperatures in the 40s at the start of this month and I ended up starting work in the office earlier than I thought I would.
Luckily it cooled down by the middle of this month. But I have found that the middle of a SE Queensland summer is not a great time to be planting veggies.
However, to satisfy my craving to plant some veggies, I did buy some lettuce and corn seedlings at the local market. Lettuces are not doing great, they are protected under shade cloth but with the hot and humid weather, they tend to bolt.
I bought the corn seedlings because out of the 20 seeds that I planted only 7 germinated. And out of that, I managed to step on (and squish) one of them – it didn’t survive, despite my efforts to make up for squishing it by providing extra water and fertiliser. I also thought that adding the extra corn seedlings would help create some rows which helps corn with pollination.
Only two cucumbers came out of my nature strip veggie patch. This wasn’t a surprise, as I haven’t had much luck with cucumbers recently. My three cucumber plants that I had visions of climbing up the trellis and providing me with an abundance of cucumbers didn’t live up to my expectations! But two cucumbers are better than no cucumbers and I appreciated them in my lunch time salads.
One baby sized watermelon also made an appearance in the nature strip veggie patch in January – I can’t remember what variety the seedling was – whether is was a baby watermelon or one that will grow into the largish variety. Seeing that one watermelon lead me to have a flashback to a time where we had grown some moon and stars watermelon. We had a few watermelons that we thought were ripe – being our first time growing watermelons – We thought ‘if they look ready they are ready’ . They were not ripe so clearly this was not the case!
I love the internet because I can Google a question and it gets answered! My daughter calls it ‘Dr Google’ because she Googles all her medical ailments – That’s where I draw the line in my google usage! But it has been a great tool for gardening advice and information.
1. Check the tendril closest to the vine that comes out of the top of the watermelon. It should be brown.
2. Check the ‘spoon’ – (the small leaf closest to the top of the watermelon.) It should be brown.
3. There will be a creamy yellow spot on the bottom of the watermelon.
My watermelon is not ripe yet – it’s actually pretty small but I can’t wait to test this knowledge and see if the tips help.
Lastly, I did get a few snake beans out of the patch this month however my children thought the guinea pigs would enjoy them more than us and got great enjoyment out of using the beans as moustaches!
So there is a quick rundown of what has been happening in my veggie patch this month. For more regular updates, don’t forget to Like our Facebook page.
PS Forgetting what variety of watermelon I planted reminded me that I want to start a garden journal this year. So I pulled out one of the kids blank scrapbooks – now to fill it in!
What has been your January happenings in your veggie patch? We would love to know! Please let us know in the comments below.