Sunday, April 24, 2011

A Productive Afternoon

I busied myself in the garden most of Saturday after spending an hour exploring the Elk Grove Community Garden. After making a few purchases at the annual plant sale there, it was interesting to see what was going on in the plots of other gardeners. Most beds were empty, a testament to a late start to the summer vegetable gardening season. Only a few plots were winding down on winter crops. I saw beautiful chards, lettuces and onions. There were a few growers with peas and fava beans in their plots as well. Many had strawberries awakening from their winter naps. At the sale I picked up three tomato varieties and two perennial plants. 

There was a wide variety of tomatoes to choose from however I was disappointed there were no descriptions of the many types I’d never heard of. Just as well I guess, since I tend to choose tomato transplants based on their names anyway. Here are the tomatoes I chose and descriptions and photos I mined from the internet:

Beauty Queen described as a good producer of very striped red and yellow fruit that have clearly defined markings much like Green Zebra.  Small to medium in size beefsteak-shaped fruit have excellent flavor. These have proven to be very popular at farmer’s markets. Beauty Queen is a smaller version of Beauty King which arose in the fields of Brad Gates of Wild Boar Farms, Vacaville, CA. 

Beauty Queen (web image)

A search for a variety labeled  Lemon Oxheart  yielded results for Giant Lemon Oxheart described as a gigantic glowing, pale yellow beefsteak fruit with a very sweet, good taste.  It resists cracking and produces well. 

Giant Lemon Oxheart (web image)

Williams Striped is a favorite at farmers' markets with large fruit weighing a pound or more. Fruits have beautiful red and yellow colors inside and out.

Williams Striped (web image)

I was lucky to pick up a couple of perennial divides to place out front.  Santa Barbara Daisy has delicate white flowers, conserves water and attracts beneficial insects.

Santa Barbara Daisy (web image)

“Magic” Aster features purple daisy flowers during late summer and early fall. Relatively low maintenance it attracts butterflies and is a good cutting flower.

"Magic" Aster

And I got them all for just fifteen dollars. All except Beauty Queen have been transplanted. I ran out of room in the raised beds for Beauty Queen but plan to add it where there are currently radishes and perhaps where the peas are when they peter out.

I also placed two bell peppers in large containers and tried my luck with another round of flower seeds here and there. So far a I’ve got seedlings of Morning Glory, Nasturtium, Zinnia, Sweet Alyssum, and sunflowers scattered throughout the garden.

Nasturtium, sprouting outside a raised bed.


The Cast said...

All that for $15. Great deal!

Christine said...

They have great deals! One of the daisies was marked fifty cents but I went ahead and gave them a dollar for it since they are non-profit and all ;)

Beth said...

Wow! That's great!
I love the little baby nasturtiums- they are so fun :)