Adam and I have left sprouting seeds to the pros after last year’s first garden crop didn’t last very long. We replaced all the failing seedlings with established plants, so this year’s garden was also started with established plants. The garden space itself is an above ground square foot garden where each plant has a certain number of square feet to call its own. Adam spear-headed the square foot garden — he figured the the right amounts of manure, soil, and vermiculite to use — while I’ve just been an assistant green thumb. Last year’s garden tomatoes and squash were riddled with annoying aphids and stink bugs. This year we’ve only had to deal with spider mites, thanks in part to an influx of ladybugs, young dragonflies, and lizards feasting on as many pests as they can. I already saw a few baby lizards scurrying around the garden bed this morning during a watering session. Adam and I also use an organically-based soy nitrogen herb and vegetable pesticide by Bonnie Plants.

Onions did not come in as strong as possible, but there’s still time before a harvest. The green onions we tried sprouting from seeds this year did not take to the garden at all and died off after a few weeks. There will be another attempt with tons of left-over seeds later. The tomato plants this year have grown like weeds, while the cilantro plant has not. I think the cilantro sprouted bossoms or tiny berries before we had a change to trim it down. In the name of Adam’s love of cilantro, there will be another attempt at cilantro in our garden. There has already been bowls of hot and sour soup and summer rolls made with tasty trimmings from the garden, so I’m hoping there will be enough jalapeños this season to give a little zest to a jar of assorted pickled peppers. Below are few late-season photos of this year’s square foot garden.