Archive for July, 2010

17
Jul
10

Harvests from my office garden

The veggies from my office garden have made me one happy camper! Except for a rather sluggish harvest from green pepper, all the other vegetable plants have produced well. 

Cauliflower Potatoes
Cauliflower, potatoes, cucumber, eggplant Cucumber

From top to bottom and clockwise: Cauliflower, potatoes, a day’s harvest of potato, cauliflower, cucumber and eggplant, and cucumber (click to enlarge)

After a long struggle with the green worms that I picked one by one assiduously from the plants, there arrived a day when I couldn’t find any more and my green leafy vegetables started growing rapidly. The cauliflower in the photo is one such – the leaves were badly scarred but I finally won the battle; no pesticide used, just my trusty old chopsticks.

The potatoes were the best I have tasted until now; just washed, cooked them in the oven, applied some fresh butter and salt. Delicious!

The cucumbers have faithfully arrived on the scene everyday and made its way to my breakfast table.

First SQG bed

New veggies in this SFG bed: Capsicum, Peanuts, Okra one row each in addition to carrots in the foremost row (Corner flowers are Nasturtium)

The above is a slight dated photo. Until today, I have harvested capsicum (bell pepper), carrots and okra several times.  This okra is a pink variety that turns green when cooked.

Second SFG bed

Second bed consisting of bell peppers (first two rows), okra (green) and tomatoes (last row) (click to enlarge)

Corner plants are marigold and petunia

Again, I have had excellent harvests of tomatoes, bell pepper and okra until today (July 18). I discovered that the sooner you pick the vegetables, the faster others come up. So I generally harvest them a day or two earlier; they are fresh and taste good.

Third SFG bed

Third bed a very productive one – starting from front row – edamame (soya), eggplant, green pepper, and cucumber (click to enlarge)

The edamame turned out to be delightful. The pods were firm and large, and the boiled beans with salt consumed the same day were unbelievably tasty. The edamame is the sole reason that I am growing my own vegetables today. A freshly harvested edamame beats the refrigerated one sold commercially hands down!

I found that cucumbers grow rapidly in summer. I missed harvesting one hidden under the broad leaves and found a gigantic one the next day. Very juicy and fresh. I think next to the edamame, the cucumbers have given me the most joy.

FourtH SFG bed

Fourth SFG bed –  Beetroots, radish, Molokheiya (an Egyptian plant good for soups), and beans

the first row of beetroots (seeds brought over from India) have finally grown well and I harvested them. My friend Utiyama-san, thoroughly enjoyed the beet and even found the leaves to be delicious. He washed them, boiled them for a while, and cut them into thin strips, mixed them in natto and found the combination to be wonderful! The second row is half empty, with half the row occupied by radish (small variety). The third row is Molokheiya, which is the prime ingredient for Molokheiya soup. I cut bits from the top plants everyday and new leaves come up immediately from below. A very productive and nutritious plant. The fourth row is beans; its harvest has also been satisfactory.

Beetroot Various veggies
Various veggies Various veggies

Photos of a day’s harvest from my office garden (click to enlarge)

I also planted green chilli – the hot, spicy variety and they have been a boon to Indian cooking at home. Just a small bit of chilly in the dishes brings back memories from home! Now if I could only lay my hands on a curry leaf (kadipata) plant and my Indian dream would be complete. 🙂

 

CIMG0237 CIMG0238
CIMG0239 CIMG0240

Some more photos of daily harvests (click to enlarge)

The top right photo shows edamame (soya beans) at the right bottom corner. The green chilli are in the photo at the bottom left, below the beans. The two varieties of okra can be seen in the photo at the bottom right.

All in all a vegetable grower’s dream come true!

 

Happy gardening!


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