Harvests and cuttings

I’m off to India tomorrow on official work. One of gardening friends mentioned that does one really de-stress while gardening or gets stressed thinking about whether all plants have been watered, fertilized or not. I have decided to place my trust my friend Utiyama-san/my landlord to take care of my office garden and and my wife to take care of my home garden. In the meanwhile, I have been busy harvesting veggies already!

CIMG0018 First potatoes from one plant this year

I was delighted with the 8 or so potatoes from my first plant – I took them home immediately. The funny thing about these freshly harvested potatoes is that you rub against the skin while washing them and  the skin peels off! Wonderful taste – just pop a few in the microwave oven after washing them, cut half way and deftly insert thin slices of butter, a sprinkling of salt and some chat masala and eat them immediately. These were the best potatoes I have ever tasted.


                         Second day’s harvest and rose cuttings

On the second day, I harvested some broccoli and beans. And, as the title of this post indicates, I received some cuttings of a fragrant rose variety and some cuttings of Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, and immediately planted them in deep pots applying rooting hormone at the cut ends before inserting them in special mix. Next year promises to be a rosy one (pun intended)!



Cosmos and Balsam

In the meanwhile, I found small Cosmos plant and Balsam plants scattered all over the field; these were probably from the scattering of seeds from last year. I promptly picked up a few and placed them in a pot. As the flowers bloom, I can present it to some non-gardening friend and see his delighted face!


My cauliflowers and broccoli have turned out quite all right.


Cauliflower                                                                      Broccoli

One or two of the cauliflowers showed a purple tinge in the stems. I wonder why. Any ideas?


View of the cauliflower and broccoli plants

(Left corner shows three gladiolus bulbs that I planted to add some color. Not sure whether flowers will bloom this year)


View of potatoes, edamame and corn

Corns seem to be doing well too. I learned that I had to periodically check the plastic bands that I had used to secure the corn plant to the stay. As the corn grows, the plastic bites into the stem; luckily I unloosened the bands allowing the corn to grow freely. The yellow flowers at the far end corner are marigolds.




The tomatoes have come up fast. Initially thought of setting the stays in teepee shape, but have now set the poles erect and have led two stems from each plant up each pole. I should be harvesting large tomatoes from four and mini tomatoes from four plants in another week or so.

The rest of the plot looks a bit barren thanks to a few pests in the soil that calmly ate up the roots of my Okra and Moroheiya plants!




While eggplants (left row) are growing with gay abandon,  the pepper and cucumber plants have been ravaged by that round fat little worm that gnaws away at the roots and kills the plants. I’m looking to the day when I can round up all these pests and treat them to a gigantic spoon of chilli powder – and I won’t give them any water to drink.




White and pink varieties of the African Daisy (I think)

I’m happy with the blooms of these two flowers at my office garden. They continue to spread too – I cut off the baby plant from its parent and it starts growing independently yielding more flowers. Isn’t nature wonderful?


In the meanwhile, I received rose cuttings again from a friend of my daughter. These are yellow roses; I had the audacity to ask my daughter to go and request cuttings from the neighbor. The good soul sent more than ten of them. It is really not too difficult to propagate roses. Here are the tools and the cuttings:


Rose cuttings and the tools

I guess the photo is self explanatory. The rose cuttings on the right are trimmed to remove flowers and trim off the leaves too. Make a clean cut just below a node, dip the cut surface in a rooting hormone and insert it in prepared soil (which is light and contains vermiculite, etc.). Stick the cutting deep inside so that it doesn’t budge.



Rose cuttings planted

And the results are as you see above.

Until the next post, happy gardening!


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15 Responses to “Harvests and cuttings”

  1. 1 Anita
    June 3, 2011 at 10:59 pm

    The description of your cooked potatoes made my mouth water. I didn’t have much luck with my potato plants. Partly because they were under-watered during the hottest days. (It’s been 40 deg C/104 F).

  2. June 16, 2011 at 6:55 pm


    I so enjoyed your adventures with potatoes and roses! I grow both in my garden in California, USA. You are right, rose cuttings are very easy, and home grown potatoes are the best. I like the variety called ‘Early Rose’. We like to cut them up, salt them, add rosemary, toss them with olive oil, and roast them in a hot oven. This year I’m growing ‘Momotaro’ tomatoes for the first time. The seed company said they’re the favorite in Japan. Any opinions?

    • June 27, 2011 at 12:59 pm

      That sounds like a wonderful way to cook and eat potatoes. Do you add salt and pepper before you eat them? Yes, I’m growing the Momotaro tomato variety in my plot too. It is the standard variety grown by home owners in my area. Just started harvesting mini tomatoes.

  3. June 19, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    Yeah, there’s nothing like new potatoes. Love ’em. Good luck with Rose cuttings.

  4. June 20, 2011 at 2:13 am

    Your potatoes sound and look amazing! The taste of homegrown tatties has really surprised me!

  5. June 22, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    What a great-looking vegetable garden! And now I really want to eat potatoes. They looked delicious. – Cindy

  6. June 26, 2011 at 7:47 am

    What a lovely harvest. Yes, fresh harvested potatoes taste great!

  7. June 27, 2011 at 11:01 am

    Your garden looks great! Do you blanche your cauliflower or is it a self blanching variety? I agree, nothing tastes better than home grown food.

    • June 27, 2011 at 1:05 pm

      No, I don’t blanche it (I assume this means whitening it artificially?). I let nature take its course. This year, a few had turned purple at the stem. One of our friends in Blotanical said it could possible be due to lack of boron. And she should know since she has a Master’s degree in horticulture.

  8. June 28, 2011 at 1:20 am

    Your veg are way ahead of mine – I have only just dug up my first meal of potatoes and broccoli this morning. I love your garden – the soil look very sandy – is it hard to keep everything well-watered.

    • June 28, 2011 at 2:31 am

      Elaine, you are very sharp. And right of course. The soil is extremely sandy. The land is reclaimed land – I think the river flowed through many years ago. So I’m trying to add compost as much as I can to reduce the sandy component. I also water the plots practically everyday in the evenings in summer. Good luck with your potatoes and broccoli.

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