22
Mar
09

Peas, figs, favas, fencing and flowers

The title says it all – a summary of the work I did this week on my garden.  I was lucky to have better weather than in the past few weeks, and I made full use of the good weather to get some work done in the garden.

I was excited with my first harvest of green peas – they were fresh and sweet. The faster you pick the almost-ripe pods, the faster they grow. Here are some photos of the green peas in the planter on my balcony.

Green pea plants

Green pea

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My children saw green peas in pods for the first time! I’m quite sure that many kids in Japan have never seen peas in pods – they generally come in frozen packs or cans!

 

Equally exciting for me was the first of the fava beans jutting out from the spent-out flower. I was a little worried that the flowers of the fava bean were calling it a day with no sign of the beans – but no, they had done their work! The beans, although tiny made their first appearance today.

Bean jutting out of spent flower

Bean pointing to the sky

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The photo on the left shows a fava bean jutting out of the flower, and on the right is a bean pointing to the sky (called “sora mame” in Japanese, literally “sky bean”).

 

The highlight this week was the framework of bamboo supports and net that my son Uday helped me to put up. This is in preparation of the tomato and cucumber plants that I intend to grow in the last row of squares in my patch.
We were pretty pleased to put up the framework with whatever materials we had on hand, and when we finished it, it appeared to be fairly solid and stable and most likely would have the capability to withstand the weight of tomatoes and cucumber and, of course, the strong winds and typhoons in summer!

Uday

Uday surveying his handiwork!

View from the back

Another view from the back of the framework

We set up the structure so that the net would be inclined and light to the vegetable plants would not be obstructed when the cucumber and tomato plants were fully mature.

I also got my fig plant from the nursery and replanted it in a pot. I have had success with the fig tree in the past, and I might try to grow it in a planter this time.

Fig

 

Fig tree replanted in a pot

Used akadama tsuchi: fuyoudo : kanuma tsuchi in the ratio of 5:3:1. The type of plant was “Maruseiyu” — would that be Marseilles? I need to get hold of a good horticultural dictionary. I picked up gardening after coming to Japan, and my horitcultural vocabulary in English is rather limited; so you are likely to find this blog with a lot of Japanese terms!

 

 

 

 

I planted my first few “sugar snap” pea plants in another part of my garden that I had just prepared. I have strung up nets against the wall just behind the plants and will guide them over the nets as they grow.

Sugar snap peas

These sugar snap peas supposedly have soft pods that can be eaten. This is again a first for me. I prepared the soil by mixing it with lime a week before to reduce the acidity. Just before planting these, I mixed it up with compost and compound fertilizer (N:P:Ca = 8:8:8). I also included a small amount of organic fertilizer just before planting them.

Two rows of mini-radish plants have also come up at last, and so also the komatsuna plants.

Radish

Komatsuna

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To end this week’s post here are some flowers from my garden – the pot marigold is a different one than last week’s.

Another pot marigold in bloom

Pot marigold

Yellow pansies nodding their heads

 Pansies

Until the next week, happy gardening!

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