Summer of 2019 and what a great garden

Every year I hope for a great garden. I tell myself each January that THIS year I’m going to grow my best garden ever. Well, this year’s garden is certainly a contender. I have three 3′ x 6′ raised beds in the backyard, a variety of containers in the driveway (yes, I garden in my driveway; it’s sunny there.), and the Garden of Perpetual Responsibility, which always needs weeding. I’ll get to them later. First, check out the Garden of Infinite Neglect shown below, a 3′ x 12′ raised bed in the front yard next to the sidewalk.

The Garden of Infinite Neglect sat fallow for three years while I was battling cancer and then recovering from treatment.

This bed is a riot of winter squash, Crimson Sweet watermelon, Japanese cucumbers, Soleil wax beans, and Arikara Yellow Indian Woman beans. There are some zinnias and marigolds buried somewhere under those huge squash leaves.

I am most excited about the two varieties of winter squash in this bed because, well, I am just plain silly about squash. I am growing Mayo Blushers and Guatemalan Blues in this bed. I have grown the Mayo Blushers before. The seeds are from Native Seed Search, a non-profit that collects native-grown seeds from throughout the American Southwest and Mexico. Mayo Blushers make small to medium-sized winter squash that turn a pinkish color when they are ripe. The first TINY female flower bud showed up on those plants today.

But what really has me intrigued are the Guatemalan Blues. I got my seeds from Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company, but a number of vendors carry them, including Fedco. I have four plants growing in the foreground in the above photo. I have never grown them before, so I am most curious what they will look and taste like. I am expecting something that looks like a long banana squash, only blue. They are supposed to grow to 15-20 inches long and get up to 10 lbs, with moist yellow-orange sweet flesh.

A female Guatemala Blue flower bud about three or four days from opening.
A female Guatemalan Blue flower bud about three to four days from opening.
This is the flower bud yesterday evening about to open. The ovary is almost two inches long.
Ta Da! The flower opened this morning and it is a humdinger.

My garden provides me with so much entertainment. But I am easily amused.

I am going to bring this post to an end because I am still getting used to my beautiful new iMac, and WordPress has changed since I last created a blog post. I am basically stumbling around here.

BTW, about my long absence from my blog… I finished radiation for cancer in May, 2018, and the treatment utterly wiped me out for a year. In May this year, my energy bounced back and I began planting my summer garden. I was late getting it into the ground, but by golly, I did it. My priority was to garden first, blog later. I will post about the back veggie beds and my hens some other time. Hope your garden is growing well this year.

About Lou Murray, Ph.D.

I'm a retired medical researcher, retired professional writer/photographer, avid gardener, and active environmentalist living in southern California. I wrote a weekly newspaper column on environmental topics in the Huntington Beach Independent for many years. I also supervised environmental restoration projects and taught at the Orange County Conservation Corps before retiring in the summer of 2016. This blog chronicles my efforts to live a green life growing as much food as possible for my husband and myself on a 4,500 sq ft yard that is covered mainly by house, garage, driveway, and sidewalks. I am also dedicated to combatting global climate change.
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4 Responses to Summer of 2019 and what a great garden

  1. Lita Murray says:

    I have loved your blog. Learning to use my MacBook has been a very slow process.


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