Thursday, September 23, 2021

The Garden at Summer's End

Yesterday, when summer ended and autumn began, I took a stroll around the back garden and took some pictures.  The garden is still green and thriving at the end of summer!  May I share some of my garden delights with you?

Red Okra

The okra, which was slow to get started, is doing very well and loving the heat!  I will definitely plant them again, next year, too, but, perhaps in a different spot in the garden.  I think there is a little too much shade for the okra where it is planted, right now, from the bottle brush tree and the curry leaf tree.

New Watermelon Vine

The watermelon vine that was grown from the newer seeds that M gave me (the vine that has produced "Baby" which is not pictured) is growing well, taking over the rest of the bed and escaping under the wire mesh to go where the zucchinis grew in the adjoining bed!

Going Where the Zucchini Used to Be!

Meanwhile, the old watermelon vines (grown from old seeds that I had) are starting to shut down:

Old Watermelon Vines

But, they've produced Wawa Melon and Walter Melon III (still clutching his feather, although it is pointing downwards, now, and no longer at its previous jaunty angle), which are continuing to do well!  I think they might require another two or three weeks to be ready for harvesting.

Wawa Melon
Walter Melon III (aka Dandy Macaroni)

Elsewhere in the garden, the potato plants (grown from regular supermarket potatoes that sprouted) have flowers!

Potato Flowers

They are so pretty that I am almost tempted to grow a bed of potatoes just for the flowers!

Nearby, the nectarine tree (newly planted earlier this year, which produced two delicious nectarines) is starting to shut down, its leaves beginning to turn yellow.  

Nectarine Tree

Also starting to shut down are the tomato plants and the recent almost 100F temperatures didn't help!  In fact, most probably both the Roma tomato plant and the Early Girl plant will be pulled up this Friday (and the last of the tomatoes picked).  Both plants produced well over the summer and I picked over 15 lbs. of tomatoes, total, from them. 

Early Girl Tomato Plant

But the serrano chili pepper plant is thriving in the heat!  

Serrano Chilies

The moringa plant's leaves are turning yellow, too, especially after the recent heatwave, but, there are plenty of moringa pods and flowers (sorry, the picture is very blurry; I'll try to take a better picture, next time):

Moringa Flowers and Pods

One last picture before I leave the garden tour, a peek into one of the flower pots:

Is That You, Lois?

I am grateful for a garden that has blessed me and my daughter with an abundance of fresh flowers and produce, through the year, and continues to provide joy, a pleasant hobby, space in which to spend time during this period of keeping social distances and staying home for the most part, and, yes, even an opportunity to meditate as I observe the cycle of life, the natural order of growth, decay, death, and renewal.

Thank you for coming along with me on the tour of the garden at summer's end.  I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!


  1. I thought the red okra looked interesting! One year my hubby grew okra with seed from Egypt. The pods were huge and it did not get slimy when cooked. We are in Central Texas, USA Where are you?

    1. The red okra turns green when cooked! I picked a pod today that was over 6 inches long! I'm in southern California. :)

  2. I always enjoy a garden tour. I tried growing potatoes in bags this year, but they didn't work out so well. When I went to harvest them, all I found were grubs. Lots of very gross grubs. Yuck.

    1. Oh, no! Grubs! I'm growing these potatoes in pots. The first 2 pots yielded some tiny, rather hard potatoes, but no grubs! I hope the other 2 pots will give me a better yield!

  3. The potato flowers are lovely. I've wanted to grow potatoes, but after reading live and learn's and your comment, I'm not so sure! Maybe I'll have better luck! Unlikely! Your naming of the fruit makes me laugh, particularly the melons! I hope Lois does well. Best, Celie

    1. Celie, you might have better luck with the potatoes, if you try to get what are called "seed potatoes". They are meant to be planted and aren't treated to prevent growth as grocery store potatoes are! Also, I didn't bother to fertilize the potatoes or provide them with good soil - I just dug up some soil from the garden, without any amendments, etc. I think I'll be able to grow better potatoes, next year, with more attention and care! Lois is up and I have a new picture of her to be posted! :D

  4. Your garden is looking great and the tomatoes have produced well for you this year. I have one small plant remaining, which I will pull out once the fruits have ripened. X

    1. Thank you, Jules. I think the tomato plants will be pulled up, today. It sounds like your summer garden is also coming to an end. It's almost time to put the garden to bed, isn't it?

  5. Such an interesting selection of plants in your garden and your photo has made the potato flowers look quite exotic! My tomato plants are at no risk of heat but might just drown after all the rain. Yesterday evening it was coming down so hard and then managed to come down even harder! Fortunately our area is an ancient sandy lake bed so the water manages to find somewhere to go.

    1. Thank you, Bushlady. I think this was the first time I have seen real potato flowers! I used to have a flowering vine called a potato vine (Solanum jasminoides) and the flowers look very similar. I read a story, as a child, about a young girl who wanted to enter some flowers in a local fair or competition, but, her father had said they didn't have any room in the garden to grow flowers as he needed the space to grow vegetables for food; apparently, the only flowers that were available for her were some potato flowers, which she picked and entered. In the story, the judges were so intrigued by the pretty, delicate flowers that they awarded her first place and the prize was a packet of flower seeds! And since she received first place, her father had agreed to giving her a small plot in the garden to grow her flowers, after all! Ever since reading that story, I had always wanted to see what potato flowers looked like! :D

      Wow, you had a lot of rain! Good thing the ground was able to absorb it all! I am looking forward to some rain, myself (nothing in the forecast, however). I just received my water bill and it was enough to bring tears to my eyes! :D

    2. What a lovely story about there potato flowers!

    3. It's funny how I remember some of those old stories I've read! :D

  6. Thank you for the tour of your end of summer garden. Your garden has been very productive this year and is thriving well with yours and M's attention.
    We will never forget this year of the zucchini that's for sure! But other things have been prolific as well.
    My neighbor gave me a potato slip from a bunch of seed potatoes they ordered and I did end up harvesting 4 potatoes so that was a fun experiment.
    My tomatoes did not do well - my fault I'm sure.
    A couple plants still have fruit so I will let them go until the bitter end and see if they ripen.

    1. My pleasure! The garden has done very well, this summer and of course, it was the summer of zucchini, wasn't it? :D

      Yay for the potatoes you grew! Will you try growing them again? Too bad the tomatoes didn't do that well. I know M spent a lot of time and energy encouraging the tomatoes to grow. Apparently, they require a lot of water and fertilizer! I hope your remaining fruits will ripen before you get your first frosts!


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