Archive for the 'Urban Agriculture' CategoryPage 3 of 8

Garden 2015 – Update #2: First Tomatoes!

We’re finally getting a normal rain pattern in St. Louis. A good soaking rain about once a week is just what the garden needs besides my daily watering. Getting some nice ripe veggies on a regular basis… this is why I love to garden!

The following garden pics were snapped on July 26th and on August 5th, voila, the first ripe bounty for my eating pleasure!

garden1 July 26 '15

garden2 July 26 '15

garden3 July 26 '15

garden4 July 26 '15

garden5 July 26 '15

garden6 July 26 '15

garden7 July 26 '15

garden8 July 26 '15

garden bounty1 August 5, 2015

I’m one happy gardener :-)



Garden 2015 – Update #1

So far this season the garden is doing well despite being drowned by all the rain we’ve been getting. A total of 11.25 inches of rain has fallen so far this month alone! Some baby tomatoes and jalapenos are starting to form already. My basil seems to like all the moisture because it’s growing like crazy. I harvested enough the other day to make a big jar of pesto. I also harvested some oregano. It’s being dried out and will be used in tomato sauce and crumbled on top of pizzas. The zinnias are looking beautiful, but the hollyhocks were so badly damaged from rust disease that I removed them from the butterfly garden yesterday. The following garden photos were taken on June 24th. The pesto and oregano pic was snapped this morning.

garden1 6-24-15 Zinnias

garden2 6-24-15 Basil in the foreground

garden3 6-24-15 Lettuces, greens, etc.

garden5 6-24-15 Baby tomato

garden6 6-24-15 Baby jalapenos

garden4 6-24-15 Butterfly garden

garden7 6-24-15 Wildflowers

garden9 6-24-15 Herbs

garden8 6-24-15  Veggie enclosure

pesto 2015 Oregano and pesto

Until next time…


Garden 2015

This year’s veggie garden was seeded on March 29th and planted on May 6th. The weather conditions were optimal to get everything in the ground early this year. All plants are thriving w/ the exception of the hollyhocks which have rust disease. I’m trying to nurse them back to health. Fingers crossed they survive. Here’s a list of what went in the garden this year:

3 Waltham butternut squash

2 Aconcagua red bell pepper

1 Jalafuego jalapeno

1 Sierra Fuego jalapeno

4 Early jalapeno

2 Red Winter kale

2 Lacinato kale

2 Ruby Red Swiss chard

2 Mixed chard (Pot of Gold/Ruby Red)

4 Black Krim tomato

2 Brandywine tomato

2 Crimson Carmello tomato

1 Pineapple tomato

1 Gold Medal tomato

1 Speckled Roman tomato

1 Pompeii tomato

Baby Mesclun lettuce

Spicy Micro Greens

Wild and Regular arugula

Siam Queen and Italian Genovese basil (direct seeded)

Zinnias (direct seeded)

The following photos were taken on 5/25/15:

garden1 5-25-15

garden2 5-25-15

garden3 5-25-15

garden4 5-25-15

garden5 5-25-15

garden6 5-25-15

garden7 5-25-15

Happy Gardening!!


Final Harvests 2014 and Pickled Jalapeno Peppers

This morning we had our first frost here in St. Louis, so for me it’s the end of the gardening season for 2014. I harvested the remaining bounty on 10/30 because the forecast for this morning was in the low 30’s. I just checked the outside temperature and it’s 31.8 F. It’s been a great growing season! The jalapenos I harvested on 10/18 were pickled and the ones in the photo from 10/30 will be candied. Below are photos of the plentiful pickin’s and the pickled peppers (with an easy recipe if you’re flush with peppers too).

harvest 10/18

harvest 10/30

pickled peppers


Pickled Jalapeno Peppers (recipe adapted from


30 medium jalapeno peppers (sliced into rings)

3 tablespoons fresh oregano (chopped)

3 tablespoons fresh chives (chopped)

3 tablespoons fresh tarragon (chopped)

3 large cloves garlic (crushed)

3 tablespoons kosher salt

9 tablespoons sugar

2 1/4 cups distilled white vinegar

2 1/4 cups water


1) Combine water, vinegar, sugar, salt, garlic, oregano, chives and tarragon in a saucepan over high heat. Bring mixture to a boil, stir in jalapenos and remove from heat. Let mixture cool.

2) Pack peppers into jars using tongs, cover w/ vinegar mixture and refrigerate until needed.

Yield: 3 pints

I hope your garden bounty was plentiful too!!


Garden 2014 – Update #4

As the garden fades from Summer into Fall it continues to produce a nice quantity of bounty. There are still some tomatoes, jalapenos, basil and hopefully a few butternut squash to be picked. I made some pesto the other day w/ the Asian basil that I picked and have been enjoying the tomatoes in salads, sandwiches and stir fries. The following garden photos were taken on October 11th. The garden bounty photos have been snapped on various days since my last update.

Brandywine, Pompeii and Black Krim tomatoes

Pineapple, Black Krim and Pompeii tomatoes

Jalapenos, butternut squash, Pineapple, Black Krim, Gold Medal, Crimson and Pompeii tomatoes

Pompeii and Pineapple tomatoes; Siam Queen basil


Happy Eating!


Garden 2014 – Update #3

Wow, the garden is going bonkers! This is shaping up to be the best year since 2009. I’ve harvested quite a bit over the last month, but it looks like the best is yet to come. The combination of the weather and me learning from my mistakes throughout the years has proven fruitful! Here are a few photos I took on September 17th and bounty photos I’ve taken over the past month. (click on photos to enlarge)

 Brandywine and Speckled Roman

 Black Krim and jalapenos

 Crimson, Black Krim and Gold Medal

 Black Krim and Crimson

 Pompeii, Black Krim, Speckled Roman and Crimson

Gold Medal, Pompeii, Speckled Roman and jalapenos


I’m diggin’ the dirt this year!!


Garden 2014 – Update #2

Although a month delayed by the cool, wet summer we’re having in St. Louis, the plants are coming along quite well. I harvested a few tomatoes the other day as well as some jalapeno peppers, chard and kale. Tonight I’m going to dice one of the tomatoes, slice one of the jalapenos and add them to the pan w/ the chopped kale and chard, give it a quick saute’ then combine it w/ some cavatappi pasta. Topped w/ some freshly grated Parmesan cheese, this will make a delicious meal!

Here are some photos I shot on August 5th and the garden bounty I harvested on August 8th:


Crimson tomatoes

Black Krim tomatoes

Speckled Roman tomatoes

 jalapeno peppers

 chard and kale

 baby butternut squash

 hummingbird/butterfly mix



 garden bounty


Green thumbs up!


Garden 2014 – Update #1

Everything seems to be progressing nicely in the garden. I taste caprese salads and salsa in my near future!

The following photos were snapped on July 8th:


hummingbird/butterfly mix




chard and kale

butternut squash


Live long and prosper…


Veggie Garden 2014

Welcome to the 2014 version of my veggie garden (as well as herbs and flowers). Seeded on 3/22/14, and transplanted on 5/28/14. It started off as a cooler than normal spring so my seeds took longer to grow seedlings large enough to transplant. Currently the weather has been perfect… not too hot, good, soaking rain showers w/ dry days in between. Fingers crossed for another great growing season! This year I have 12 tomato plants (3 Black Krim, 3 Pineapple, 1 each of Gold Medal, Brandywine, Crimson Carmello, White Tomesol, Roma (Pompeii), and Speckled Roman; 6 jalapeno plants (3 Early Jalapeno and 3 Jalafuego); 2 types of basil – Siam Queen and Italian Large Leaf; 4 chard (3 Ruby Red and 1 Pot of Gold); 4 kale (2 Nero Toscano and 2 Red Winter) and I direct seeded 3 butternut squash (Waltham). I also direct seeded 4 types of lettuce – baby mesclun, wild and regular arugula as well as a spicy micro green mix.

On the flower side I again have a variety of tall zinnias which got leggy because I waited too long to transplant, and I direct seeded some shorter zinnias (Lilliput Mix) in pots in the enclosure. I think I’ll direct seed the tall zinnias next year to avoid the problem I had this year. Some of the Hummingbird Haven mix I direct seeded last year returned this year. I supplemented this section of the garden w/ cosmos and Bring Home The Butterflies mix. I added some new lavender plants this year because most of my old lavender plants didn’t survive the harsh winter. Also in that section of the garden I put in new rosemary and thyme plants.

I snapped the following photos on June 15th and was planning to do this post the following day but the hard drive on my computer decided to die. My computer is still getting repaired so I’m working on a loaner computer. (As always, you can click on the photos to enlarge.) 

Ahhh, the joys of summer!


Garden Update # 5 – Here Today, Gone Tomorrow!

What a difference a day (or week) can make. While I was out of town we had our first frost on October 25th. My garden went from green to brown, colorful to drab. As you will see in the photos below, most of the plants didn’t survive the frost and my flowers went from technicolor to no color overnight. I can’t complain. This has been one of the best years I’ve had in my garden despite the not so ideal (cool and wet) conditions. I harvested what remained on the wilted plants – one ripe and many green tomatoes, one tiny butternut squash, lots of habanero and jalapeno peppers and a nice pile of Swiss chard. Thanks Mother Nature!


Goodbye garden. See you next year!