Tending the gardener's garden is a lot of pressure.  But the gardener will be home soon and we will have tomatoes for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  (Guest post by the Patient Wife)

Old school

The boys had fun working with some of their great grandpa's tools.  They're really embracing this urban homestead thing.  The chickens had to come in for a closer look at these weird contraptions.    
This year we had a pretty nice crop of apricots and plums.  Looks like the squirrel eradication program is finally working.  It was tuff getting the fruit into the house, between the boys and me eating them, we were lucky to bring in half a basket.  PW made some apricot ice cream and plum sorbet, delicious!

A platter  of our Sweet 1 Million, Yellow cherry, and basil.  Wish I could have had some.  PW had to hide it so the boys and I would not eat all of it before she left. 

Mid Summer in the Valley.

The Cherokee's are starting, should have more by next week.  Rose tomato as well, and one pepper.  3 more limes from my new tree, planted last fall, a Bearss Lime.  My dad has a Bearss Lime tree, actually now just a branch, that is over 25 years old and kicks out some serious fruit, dare to dream.  Nothing like a fresh lime for the beer on a hot summer day!  Maggie is not so into being farm dog when it's 100 degrees outside. 

  Planted 2 types of pumpkins.  Top one is a Full Moon Hybrid, should give me white pumpkins 48x30, 60-90 lbs.  We'll see.  Bottom one in a Wyatt's Wonder, says that they can reach over 200 lbs!!  Hope I don't get squashed, garden humor.  Last year tried pumpkins but 2 60 foot trees fell on them.  Very small pumpkins.  Picture from one of the old entrances to the house, looking through to the orchard. One of the trees that I planted in the fall, Cara Cara orange.  A sweet orange with pink flesh.

Harvest Monday

 I am having to pick the peaches early so that the animals do not get them first.  I have one old peach tree that is basically a branch, but it does have a few pieces of fruit on it.It's a race to see who will get more?  Stay tuned

 A snack platter from the yard.  All of the fixings came from the garden.  Basil, lemon cucumber, eggs, tomatoes.  Good stuff. 
The cherry tomatoes all came from one plant, Sweet 1 Million.  Next year I might plant a few more.  There would have been more in the picture, but we got hungry. 

The Green Zebra's are starting to go off, as are the Early Girls and the Better Boys.   The Heirloom's have lots of fruit on them but nothing red yet.  Peppers are looking good as well, just waiting for them to get bigger, squash and zucchini are spreading.

My first Lemon Cucumber, pretty tasty.  I have 4 plants that are on the ladder, see previous post, and all have lots of flowers.  Looking forward to eating more.  The boys loved them!

What once was lost, now is found!

Funny thing happened on the way to the coop.  Lara came across a cache of eggs, 19 to be exact.  Looks like the chickens had not stopped laying eggs after all, they had just changed their location.  Found them in a small patch of ferns.  Classic.  We had convinced ourselves that the heat had shut them down, guess we were wrong.  Set them in a bucket of water, they sunk, which means that they are still good.  If they had floated then air had entered the egg and they are spoiled.  We'll see, big fratatta tonight.

Ry's Blood Orange, Moro, a few small oranges, planted this tree in the fall. The older one did not set as much fruit this year, bummer! 

 The Cucumber ladder, I have 4 lemon cucumbers, can't wait to try them.  It's taken them a while, I think that they needed that heat that we got over the 4th.  They have taken off.

Meet the new girls.  We just got a Jersey Giant, I want to name her Snookie and  a Barred Rock hen, Princess Laya.  The ladies have been very welcoming, pecking the the newbies whenever they get out of line.

The Boys "helping" pick tomatoes.  Their baskets were not very full, I think they eat 2 tomatoes for every 1 they put into the baskets.  Standing in front of the Watermelon Heirloom, should give us tomatoes that weigh 2 pounds!

New tress, projects complete

Finally finished the rain gutter on the "Man Shed", now all we need is some rain to fill the barrel.  Picture of one of the two new Pomegranate trees that I planted in the fall.  One tree has 5 pieces of fruit on ot the other has 3.  Hopefully they will make it.  Things have cooled down around here, only reached mid 70's in the past few days.

Maggie laying under the Heirloom Watermelon Tomato plant,
she is going to make a good farm dog.

looking around

 The ladies on a little walk around the yard looking for some grubs.

Can you guess which one is the heirloom?
Monday's harvest:  First Green Zebras, mostly Early girls, a few Better Boy,
The heirlooms are coming.

Things are finally starting to cool down, however the chickens have stopped laying.  Looked it up, during times of extreme heat, we live in Woodland Hills it's hot, the chickens will stop laying, not sure when they will start up again?  Squirrels are back...not for long! 

Summer time in the valley

Maggie having a tough day

Cool to see how everything has grown over the past few months, this is the first summer without the 2 HUGE Eucalyptus trees, each one was probably 50 -60 feet tall.  I think the garden is happy they're gone

Giving the upside down growers another chance, never had much luck.  So far so good.

Another hot day in the valley, Maggie and I took lots of breaks and made sure we were well hydrated.  Strung up second level for berries.  Both the Boysenberry and raspberry flowers have dried up?  Not sure what happened, going to have to do a little research.  Tomatoes are happy, lots of fruit, squash climbing all over, beans have slowed down, lots of future fruit on Valencia, Navel (2), Grapefruit, a little on the Tangelo and Murcott, not much on old Blood, new Blood & Cara Cara have good amount, new Brown Turkey looks good as does old BT. 

First tomato harvest

Baby avocados.
Cool purple Sunflowers

Sweet One Million's

This is the first official harvest of the tomatoes, and a few other things.  I was way for a week, spending some quality time with the family back east, came home to this.  Can you say salsa and beer!  Horn worms have started, it's on!  Hot in the valley, what's new?