How My Garden Grows ~ Mid June 2012 ~ Reno, Nevada

My small garden has taken off with the warm nights and hot days we’ve been having lately here in Reno!

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Barrel full of Red Onions

Potatoes, Chives, Thyme, Oregano, Tarragon, Rosemary, and Catnip.

Beets…lots of them with garlic to the right and some more onions in front.

3 types of zucchinis on the left with a bunch of beans on the right.

Sugar Peas…there are carrots to the left.

BABY zucs!

Back right ~ japanese eggplant, Left ~ cucumbers, Front ~ pumpkins

Big box has oodles of heirloom tomatoes, two containers on the left have tomatillos.

Lots of different peppers and one basil.

Grapes…lots of grapes forming on the very old vine.

Pears are getting larger…branches are starting to droop.

Garden Update….as of Father’s Day 2010

My potato plants are starting to bloom…very pretty, indeed. I planted both yukon and some sort of purple potato.



I planted two purple tomatillos into pots…they get pretty big and I had no room in the little 4×4 planters. They are starting to put on blooms/fruit.


The romas, black russians, and brandywines are also putting on blooms.

Peppers too!

Also doing great are the garlic and onions!

2010 Garden Is FINALLY In! :)

I had to hold off on planting my garden this year due to a very cold and wet May…we were still having snow. Sheesh.

Today was 88F and very humid…29% humidity! You all in the south, just hush your mouth! That’s humid for us!

From the looks of it…most of my garden will make great Italian sauces! 🙂

In the first box I planted:

Brandywine Tomato
Black Prince – a Russian Heirloom
two types of garlic (planted last month)
Greek Oregano
Orange Bell Pepper
Sweet Basil
Flatleaf Italian Parsley

Second Box I planted:

2 Roma Tomatoes
Red Bell Pepper
German Thyme
Cayenne Pepper
Beebalm
Italian Flatleaf Parsley
2 Sweet Basils
Yellow Sweet Onions (planted 1 week ago)

In the Third Box I planted:

7 Yukon Potatoes (planted 2 weeks ago)
5 Purple Potatoes (planted 2 weeks ago)
Flatleaf Italian Parsley
2 Straightneck Squash (planted 1 week ago)

You can see the Rosemary I planted in a pot that I found in the trash the other day.

Here’s a closeup of the potatoes….

I still want to get two tomatillos, two cucumbers, one dill , and one green chile…those will go into containers.

August 2009 Garden Update ~ Sparks, Nevada

Well…it’s almost the end of August and here is what is left of my garden. I don’t think it produced as well as last year, but I tried different plants than last.

Cucumbers…I’ve oodles of cucumbers. The best producing ones have been the Lemon and the Homemade Pickles. Both I bought as seedlings from the UNCE Plant Sale, and that particular Master Gardener got her seeds from Botanical Interests in Colorado.

Cucumber ~ Homemade Pickles Seeds

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They have made many many many pints and quarts of pickles (picture shows lemon and homemade cucs):

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Lemon Cucumber Seeds ~ These are tasty little cucumbers!

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Spacemaster Cucumbers round out my cucumber plants. It’s not producing as many as the other two…but supplies us with great cucs to slice into salads and add with red onions and vinegar.

Squash…I’ve diddly-squat in the squash department. Squash bugs ate my whole crop. I couldn’t smoosh them fast enough.

I do have a mystery volunteer that is coming up in the decomposed granite in between two of my boxed tomato plants. I’m thinking it’s a winter squash of some sort…or a mutant. Anyone have any ideas?

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Tomatillos…I’ve tomatillos coming out of my ears. 🙂 They grow well here in Northern Nevada, that’s for sure. I think I may decrease to 2 plants next year. I’ll be making more salsa soon. I’ll add a bunch into pesole that I plan on canning (going to break out that pressure canner that I got for my birthday soon).

Peppers…peppers ALWAYS do well here! I’ve been picking bell peppers, hungarian stuffing peppers, yellow pickle peppers, jalapeno, cayenne, and sweet italian. I’ve borrowed my sister’s dehydrator and plan on using it and the pressure canner to put up my peppers after roasting them. I read that you can dehydrate peppers even after roasting them. Will be making sauces up and canning them too.

Sweet Italian peppers starting to ripen

Sweet Italian peppers starting to ripen

The corn did ok, not as well as last year. I planted it in a different spot, guess it didn’t like it much.

The heirloom Brandywine tomatoes did not do well at all. The plant looks ok, it blooms, but then they drop. The heirloom Siberian tomatoes are producing very well.

Beets did great. Carrots not so well. Radishes did well. Brussels sprouts not so well…I finally yanked them as they were full of bugs. Cabbage did great. Cantaloupe got eaten by squash bugs. Horseradish is doing great…well, the top part is really big, not sure about the root part yet.

Herbs do great in my yard. You should see my one sun room…loaded with brown lunch bags of herbs drying. Basil, fennel, chamomile, oregano, thyme, parsley, rosemary, and sage.

Garden Pictures For Today ~ Sparks, Nevada

Pictures today…it’s been one heck of a week here at work! Seems all I’m up for are picture postings. Sorry.

Maters! We ate our first garden tomatoes of the year! Red Siberians. Yum Yum YUMMMMMIE GOOD!

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I’ve cucumbers growing! There are four plants throughout the yard…here are the Spacemasters.

I still think these wee bees (they are not honeybees, some other type or bee-like) are the cutest things…they were all tucked into the sunflower this morning. 🙂 NOTE: I talked to the beekeepers at the Nevada State Fair (8/26/09) and they said these guys are Native Bees!

The Lemon Queens are blooming! They are also over 8 feet tall! Holy Cow! I was finally able to submit data on the Lemon Queens to The Great Sunflower Bee Project. My other data submitted was for the honeybees on the lavender, russian sage, beebalm, and coneflowers.


Please look past the water stained windows (they are very very very old…like 70 years old) and instead gaze on the pretty jar with lavender buds and white vinegar. I’m making my own clothes softner/rinse.

Wednesday Ramblings ~ 17 June 2009 ~ Sparks, Nevada

Just a Smörgåsbord of things today…lots of different pictures of things I took over the weekend.

Let’s start with Lucy-Goosey ~ she is much better, less stressed out, kennel cold over with. She’s a funny, funny, funny kitty. Eats like a horse. Me thinks we’ll have to start rationing out her food!

Leo is a bit blury…he was licking her face.

Hurry up and take my picture…

The Lemon Queen Sunflowers ~ these are part of the Great Sunflower Bee Project. This picture was taken over the weekend, they are over the top of the fence now, taller than me…I’m 5’4″ (no short jokes, please! 😛 )

A close-up of a soon-to-be sunflower.

The Chamomile is blooming…

The Blueberries are still green…

I’ve tomatoes bigger than the plant…had to string the plant up to support the buggers. These are the Siberian Red Heirloom tomatoes that I bought at the UNCE Master Gardener Plant sale in May. My other tomato plants are starting to bloom.


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This is Piggy…our neighbor’s cat that we are feeding for the summer while he’s away on a drill rig in Eastern Nevada. He’s a pretty cool cat…gives one hellacious head-butt.

My yellow onions are growing much faster than the red ones…

We got this cool dude at Goodwill…someone had welded him out of steel. Sorta has a Southwestern Predator look going for him. LOL! Soon he’ll be taking on all of the sunflowers growing around him.

Tomatoes in Northern Nevada

While at the UNCE Master Gardener Plant Sale I bought 5 heirloom tomato plants. After listening to Rachael (a master gardener) I decided to pick up a Siberian Red (2), Silver Fir Tree (1) and a Brandywine (2). The Brandywine was my choice as I really love their flavor.

I picked two Russian Heirloom tomatos to try…as most of you who have been living here in Northen Nevada for any length of time know, you just don’t know what the heck our weather will be from one day to the next.

Siberian Red Heirloom Tomato~

An open pollinated tomato from Russia that sets fruit in cool weather, it’s an excellent plant if you have short, cool summers or to plant first thing in spring (think Nevada springs!) as this plant will set fruit at temperatures as low as 38F and will continue to set fruit in early fall! This is a very early ripening tomato that performs very well with heavy yields and excellent flavor. The Siberian Red is semi-determinate and produces round, brilliant red, juicy fruits that weigh between 3 and 5 oz. The tomatoes have a slight flattening at the top. It takes approximately 65-75 days from the time of transplant to mature tomatoes, although it’s been known to produce mature tomatoes in under 50 days in mild climates.

And guess what!!!!???! I’VE ‘MATERS GROWING ALREADY! Hee! I planted one Siberian Red in a Topsey-Turvy and the other in the 18″x18″ above ground box…and they’re both blooming and setting!

Siberian Red Heirloom Tomato in topsey-turvy 5/25/09

Siberian Red Heirloom Tomato 5/25/09

Red Siberian Heirloom Tomato in planter 5/25/09

Red Siberian Heirloom Tomato in planter 5/25/09

Silver(y) Fir Tree Heirloom Tomato ~

An heirloom from Russia with distinctive silvery fern-like foliage and round red fruit that are very decorative and great for containers and hanging baskets. They are compact 24″ tall plants that may need to be staked. An early determinate that has 3″ to 3-1/2″ fruit that are round and slightly flattened with a classic tomato flavor. They mature around 58 days from transplant.

Brandywine Heirloom Tomato ~

This indeterminate tomato is an Amish heirloom that dates back to 1885. It has a large,thin-skinned, reddish-pink beefsteak-type fruit that is rich in flavor and can weith up to 1 pound. It must be staked or caged and will grow until the autumn frost.

NOTE: I had a comment that asked about how to dry tomato seeds, and since it sorta looked like a spam I’m going to answer it here. HERE is a great link on how to save tomato seeds for next years garden.