It’s been about 2 months since this year’s garden was first planted. We’re finally starting to see fruit on practically all of the plants, though we’re still patiently waiting for our first real harvest. A lot has been going on since the last update so let’s take a look and see what all of this growth is about.
We’ll start June’s Garden tour with the Pepper portion. At the start of the month the plants were off to a good start but still looking a little sparse and young, there were lots of flowers but only a couple baby peppers starting to emerge.
By the end of the month the pepper plants have really blown up, we have lots of peppers forming and the plants look nice and bushy. You may notice there are a couple of non-peppers in this section too. We’ve added some Basil and some more tomatoes to the mix.
The first to mention are the Guajillo Peppers, they were the first to appear and seem to have grown large rather quickly. There’s about 10 larger peppers on the 3 plants in this small pot and more flowers coming. Guajillo Chilis generally grow to about 4 inches and are considered to have mild to medium heat. I can’t report on the spice of our Guajillos as of yet, but we’re already up to 4 inches on several of the chilis. Now we are waiting for these peppers to turn red before we harvest them.
Then we have the Chiltepins, or Tepins. To be honest, I have no idea what these are all about, other than what I’ve read. I know that I have never eaten these peppers fresh and I think I’ve had them pickled before- this the main reason for selecting them this year. I always like to go for the unknown (to me) varieties, I like the process of seeing how their story unfolds. Here they are at the beginning and the end of the month.
The Chiltepins are the odd ones out in the pepper garden, they grow a little different than the rest. Their limbs are long and lanky, their leaves are small and close to the stems, their flowers are a bit pointier than the others, and their fruits are small drops. They kind of look a little sad compared to some of the others, but they sure don’t seem to be struggling, we’re seeing a lot of peppers coming. Though they are small, Chiltepin peppers are said to be extremely hot, some say hotter than habaneros. I will report on the heat as soon as possible, the heat in peppers vary greatly due to the growing conditions, the harsher the environment the hotter the peppers. Generally more water equals milder heat.
The Hot Cherry Peppers are coming in nicely, there are 3 plants along with 2 Jalapeños in this large pot below. The Cherry Peppers are growing nearly twice as fast as the Jalapeños.
We’ve been getting a ton of round Cherry Peppers over this past month, but hardly any Jalapeños until the very end. I’m not scared though, I know the Jalapeños will deliver plenty. They’re a staple in the garden and I’ve always have great luck in growing them. For now, we’ll just take a glance at these plump Cherry Peppers.
The last of the peppers in my garden are the Cayenne Peppers! There are many by now, but I especially liked to watch the progress of this one from flower to full Cayenne. This growth takes place over about 2.5 weeks.
I love how the flower remained on the pepper through out. It’s kind of cartoon-like as the Cayenne pepper grows out of its clothes.
We also started some basil seeds in the end of April, once we brought them out to the yard they started to grow very fast. By the end of the month they started to burn a bit, so they are now in a slightly shadier spot, needing to be harvested before they bolt to flower.
Baby Grasshopper break! Baby Grasshopper! This little guy was hanging on tight as the wind was blowing fiercely. He was so cute sitting there on that leaf, just over a quarter inch long. Awww!
On to the Tomatillos! I posted about these last week in a bit more detail, you can read more about that here: Tomatillo Update. These guys really grew a lot this month. At the beginning of June, I installed some small tomato cages and bamboo stakes to help with support. By the end of the month, they are really sprawling out with lots of large husked fruit hanging.
They are probably the quickest plant growing in the garden this year, oddly enough they are also the only one to be attacked by pests so far. I have yet to figure out who has been eating small holes in the tomatillos, but since the middle of June, they have seemed to calm down a bit- perhaps they are getting full.
The life cycle of a Tomatillo has been as exciting to watch as expected. Once the flower falls the papery husk begins to develop and create a balloon like shell for the Tomatillo to hide in as it forms. As tough as it has been to leave these little Tomatillo packages alone, I have only slightly “squeezed” one to check if there was anything growing in there- and luckily there was! So I’m hoping that we will be harvesting many Tomatillos in the near future.
The Cherry Tomatoes are doing well, we started to see small green tomatoes at the beginning of the month with plenty more on the way. The Tomato flowers this year are looking a bit shaggy, I’m not sure why, but they seem to be more shriveled that other tomato flowers. Doesn’t seem to affect the fruit though and they’re still beautiful!
By the end of the month we have started to see a few very red tomatoes ready for picking! Also, we have had several very hot days and and we are starting to see a handful of burnt leaves on these plants. They are sitting in relentless direct sun every day, so it’s not surprising to see some fried tomato leaves in the mix. We have grown tomatoes here for several years and they always do really great- but it’s inevitable that eventually they start looking a bit fried and unsightly. By fall they look like they are just hanging on, trying to bear just a few more tomatoes before the season is over. I guess that’s just part of potted garden life. We will be harvesting a handful of these over the weekend! Homegrown tomatoes are the best!
And last I will mention that the Tomato seeds that I started last month have been transferred to a pot near the pepper garden. They are way crowded in this small pot, but are actually growing quite well. Over this past month they have grown about 6 times the size of when they were planted in this spot. I have more sprouts inside that I suppose I will have to plant somewhere soon!
Thanks for checking in on my 2 month garden update! If you’re interested in more of this years garden progress check out the posts below…
What have you been growing this year? Do you have any tips or gardening secrets to share?