Erik started his begonias indoors during the winter and in the spring moved them to the garden boxes where they are now in full bloom. (Erik Jacobsen photo)

Erik started his begonias indoors during the winter and in the spring moved them to the garden boxes where they are now in full bloom. (Erik Jacobsen photo)

Midseason review: Has your effect been achieved?

Erik takes a few moments to ponder if the garden is meeting expectations

For many of us who like to work in the dirt and enjoy the fruit of our labour is a lifelong experience.

We can all agree that gardening is hard work. The bonuses are the joy of using one’s imagination and feeling good about it.

Today after thinning one more row of carrots, I started summer pruning my fruit trees again. They have sent out shoots of nearly twelve inches long.

I water my Raspberries twice a week but not for very long because the roots are shallow. When I start picking the berries, it will be necessary to water them every other day and best after sunset, even after some rain. It will soon be, or the raspberry picking is on the way.

It would be a good idea to trim back some of the weaker raspberries’ canes and cut down the ones for next year to a height of five feet. It will make the picking much more accessible.

My yellow raspberries have also started ripening. It will be pick, pick, pick for the next several weeks.

It will soon be time to water hanging baskets and other planters every day. Those containers do not hold enough water, even with the ever best potting soil. Again, I repeat, the moisture meter takes out the guesswork and replace it with reality.

This time of the year, when everything is growing or flowering, I take a few minutes to consider if my effect has been accomplished. Even for the best of us, including me, our outcome has not met our expectations, or new ideas have surfaced.

I spend time planning for next year and take some notes right away before they disappears into thin air.

My tuberous begonias are now in full bloom and greet me each time I walk by the flower boxes. It still astonishes me to think back to February when I planted the tubers inside under light, stored from last year, and watched them slowly come alive.

I believe we can all learn that patience is essential to gardening.

My strawberry plants are now finished producing, so I decided to dig up one more row of the two left. It was in reality an easy job because I used a narrow spade.

When finished, I noticed a whole lot of small strawberry plants from the runners. I want to add one more row of plants to the new location where I planted the other row earlier.

Unfortunately, I now have other crops growing in that space, so that will have to wait until next year. I am going to dig those young plants up in the fall. I will plant them close together as “bare roots” in a container using potting soil or peat moss and store them in the root cellar until next spring to be planted out. It is significant not to let them dry out, or they will die.


Harvesting has begun on raspberries, red on the left, yellow on the right. (Erik Jaobsen photo)