I hope you all are doing good. In this blog post, I am sharing all about the exciting First harvests, I made from my new garden, last year. Since March, I wanted to share this post with you, but I kept postponing this being busy with other work. Now I forced myself to finish this and felt so happy. More stories ahead…
My New Garden.
“New garden”, Yes, a new garden. I got shifted to a new place. And started setting up my garden space in July last year. (If you are following me on Instagram, @diarytale_gardens, or @diarytale, you know this already) I am still building up my garden by adding new plants now and then. You know me and my love for plants. Hi, I am Preethi, a big plant addict for the new readers here.
In the new space, the first couple of plants I started with are a jasmine plant and a rose. Slowly I started adding one after one. So, at first, I had only 10-15 pots, which mainly comprised of flowers and herbs. Later, I started my vegetable patch. Now my garden has more than 90 pots.
Therefore, in this blog post, you will be seeing the harvest I made in the time from February to December. All these harvests are not made in a single day/week. Sometimes I will get only 1-2 radish, the other day, I will harvest more than 20 okras.
Also, I traveled a lot last year, leaving my garden unattended. So, I could not harvest, what I thought I would (in terms of quantity).
MY FIRST HARVESTS
First, Let’s divide my garden into 3 categories. That way it will be easier for me to explain and show the harvest.
- Flower Garden
- Herbs & Greens.
- Veggie Patch
I think it is best to start with my flower harvest first. Let’s dive in.
Flowers add some life and colors both to my life and garden. So, my first option is always to begin a garden with flowers. Everyone like flowers and it is very easy to grow and maintain. If you are a beginner, think about how to start a garden or what to start with. Blindly go for flowers.
Apart from this, flowering plants play a major role in my garden. It attracts beneficial insects especially, bees that help in “pollination”. Also, it attracts harmful bugs from attacking the veggies or herbs around them.
Now let’s see what I had in my garden the past year.
Started with an orange one, and later added a double-colored rose (red with white edges). So, I had and am still having two varieties of roses.
I am having 4 different colors of the hibiscus plant. Red (common), white, yellow, and pink.
This is the first plant I started with. So, it is always close to my heart. The fragrance. It never failed to amaze me.
4. Mullai or Arabian jasmine
Next to jasmine, what I like is mullai. This plant is also called Arabian Jasmine. (just now found its English name) I started with just a small sapling with only two leaves. Now, it is yielding up to 80 flowers per day during the summers.
5. Nithya malli or Jasmine Fluminense
This plant flowers throughout the seasons. It has a unique fragrance. When it blooms, the air is filled with its amazing scent.
6. Jathi malli or Royal Jasmine
Another type of jasmine we love in our house is Jathi or Royal jasmine. This white flower blooms all over the season especially from October to December.
This plant plays a major role in attracting the bugs from attacking the neighbor plants.
8. Trumpet vine
When I bought this, it only had two leaves. I had no idea how it will bloom, what color, nothing. And to my surprise, it bloomed with beautiful orange flowers, that look like trumpets.
Herbs and Greens
Next off to the flowers, come the herbs. They are the easiest to grow and quickest to harvest. So I started with some herbs and greens next. I started all the following greens from seeds except mint and curry leaves. They are quickest to germinate too. So you will not lose your patience while growing herbs.
They need medium light and can be grown even on your balcony or on your window sill. So everyone can grow at least 2-3 herbs in their home.
Now, let’s see what are the herbs I harvested last year.
The first herb I chose to grow to begin a garden is mint. Of course, easy to grow, demands less attention, quick to harvest.
If you are looking for how to grow mint. I have already written a detailed post. The link is given here. Tap to check it out. Blog post – Growing mint.
The herb which every Indian kitchen uses is coriander. I use the dhaniya seeds from my kitchen cabinet, roughly crush the seeds into half and soak them in water overnight before sowing. It takes up to a month for the first harvest.
3. Curry leaves
4. Methi greens
Vendhiya keerai or methi greens are grown well only between December to February. It only takes 24 – 28 days to harvest from the day of sowing seeds. This harvest I made in February last year.
5. Murungai or moringa
6. Palak keerai
This keerai is rich in nutrients and minerals. We used to make palak paneer and palak paratha using the greens harvested from my garden.
7. Aloe Vera
I think almost every home has an Aloe Vera plant. Very less maintenance and grows well in the semi-shaded area. If you are interested in growing Aloe Vera, then click here – Growing Aloe Vera.
8. Kodi pasalai
Among the greens, pasalai is my favorite. The curry made from this keerai is so delicious. This keerai is easy to grow as well as propagate. Here is one of the harvests of pasalai keerai from my garden.
I remember how I always talked and dreamed about being able to grow and harvest all the vegetables I consume daily from my garden. And I always wished to plan my menu for the day by looking at the harvest I made from my garden. It is still a dream for me. Hoping one day, it will come true.
The following are the plants I had in my garden the past year.
1. Okra or Ladies finger
The one plant which you can always rely on for a good harvest is the ladies’ finger. I had only 5-6 plants and I harvest 10 to 15 okras every week. One time I got about 20 okras in a single harvest.
I have already covered a detailed blog post on growing okras in a container in a separate post. If you are interested, click here – Growing Ladies finger in containers.
Quickest to germinate and quickest to harvest is radish. You can grow this vegetable throughout the year. The only hardship I faced growing radish is the ‘bug attack’.
3. Avarai or Broad beans
This is the first time for me to grow avarai or broad beans in my garden. Giving the correct amount of manure or compost at the right time made a huge impact on the harvest. I was so happy growing and eating these beans.
I had fun harvesting these beans. There will be no difference in insight, between the pods and the leaves. So I used to leave only plucking a few pods thinking that’s it. But the next day, I will see more pods hanging.
Tomatoes are common, almost all home garden has this plant by default. I harvested more tomatoes in the summer rather than in winter. I had only 4 plants and got a good harvest. Expected results.
5. Taro root
The biggest surprise I had last year was this taro root harvest. I almost waited 7-8 months for this harvest and I did not expect it at all. I will write a detailed post on this harvest later.
This time, the biggest disappointment is corn. Because, on looking at the plant growth, I expected more no of pearls on the corn and also more harvest. But, I got this. That is ok, for the first time. I am still wondering what went wrong.
7. Bitter gourd
First time growing bitter gourd. It is very easy to grow. Since I could not provide the correct creeper support, the plant retarded. I made only 8-10 bitter gourds in total.
After corn, the next disappointment from last year is brinjals. Because I thought only 3 plants are enough for us. Already I lost two for bug attacks. Only one remained and gave only a few brinjals in total.
So these are all the plants I grew and harvested last year. Some unexpectedly made a huge harvest and some are a little disappointing. But I enjoyed growing these plants and still learning a lot. Hope you enjoyed this post as I do.
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