Freezing Temperatures Can't Knock out the Champ!

Wednesday December 4th 2013 marks the first freezing day we have felt here in the South Bay area in over 10 years. I will admit that about 5 years ago in the financial district of San Francisco we had icy rain/snow fall. Enough that it covered the ground about half an inch high and sufficient to scoop up a perfectly dripping icy snow ball, but this time was different. No snow as are the coldest days back east. Just a cutting breeze and dry cold cold air. For about a solid week after that we had freezing temperatures. I didn't believe it would happen. When it did it was too late to save the Banana and Plantain plants. Our grape vine instantly went into hibernation mode as well as a couple of our last green pepper plants.
After all of that I am happy to announce that many of the tested tropical plants survived the onslaught including the Neem tree. The Neem Tree is proving to be quite the fighter!

Garden Update: July 25, 2012

Corn overlooking the pool

Well since our last Garden Update we have lost some and won some. Here are the reports: The Strawberries were an awesome experiment, but they dried up in the hanging baskets I made. They definitely needed more soil and root space and I was unable to keep up with them, but next season we will go heavy on the strawberries.

The raised bed was deepened with hand laminated cardboard and the Spinach & Broccoli were taken out. We did get the opportunity to save some seeds for next season when we will plant the Spinach earlier and avoid too much direct light, which was part of the issue. The Broccoli would have done better with a deeper bed as well, but we needed to get our second harvest going.

Outback Garden
Pumpkin flower closed around 2pm

 The second harvest in our updated and deepened raised bed includes Peas, Melons, Cantaloupes, Onions, Pumpkins and Watermelons. Pumpkins grow very fast and quickly take over. We left just 2 plants on either side of the bed and on each corner we added another melon. The onions and peas are in the center, but it may prove to be too sunny for both of those more sensitive crops.
Pumpkin flower open for business
We have a customer! I wonder how many 'Hits' or 'Likes' we've gotten.

Right next to the raised bed are several containers holding our Sweet 'Tollie' non-bell peppers and regular green to red Bell Peppers Chocolate Cherry, Brandywine and a Striped variety Tomato. There are also Eggplants, Hass Variety Avocado Seedling, which won't set fruit for another few years, but will probably be used as rootstock for my West Indian/Caribbean variety avocado. There is a Cavendish Banana plant and it's suckered baby, which was separated and has been brought upstairs so we can keep a better eye on it and hope the Mother plant sets out a few more. In the Musa banana family is also a Giant Puerto Rican Plantain plant, a recently added Golden Pineapple, which will probably be ready for next season and lastly our Calamansi and Dwarf Orange trees.

Still have a few Sweet Peppers (Non-Bell)
Brandywine largest Tomato variety we currently grow
 In the front garden area, which falls within our community living space we have several Corn plants,  Soy, Carrots, Onions, Tomatoes (Sun Sugar variety), Hot Peppers and a few recently transferred Watermelon, Pumpkin, Cantaloupe and Melons plants from the back. The Pinto beans were already harvested and eaten tender before they hardened too much on the vine. No wonder I couldn't keep up. Most of these crops are experimental to see, which varieties grow well and tastiest. Next season we will focus on growing more of fewer better quality crops unless our space gets bigger! :) Enjoy the pictures.

Pumpkins already starting to set fruit.
Banana herb plant is NOT a Tree. This stem/trunk will never get woody.
This will one day become a true Giant Plantain Plant.

Some of this seasons fruit all Red-dy for action!
Towering Corn

Another Pumpkin fruit. Should be ready for Halloween!