The Grovestead

Farm, Family, Fun.

Tag: peas

Garden Update

Garden beds

Tomato starts

Planting tomatoes in late Spring

Garden update 2015

With the new barn construction taking most of our attention this summer, we didn’t have as much time to devote to the garden. But we still managed to get our favorite crops planted: tomatoes, corn, peas, onions, potatoes, beets, cucumber and another testbed of watermelon (we have yet to be successful with watermelon).

Corn and potatoes

By the way, did you know beets make excellent salads? Just chop up the beets and leaves (throw the stems) and add some dressing. We’ve been eating them daily around here. In fact, beet greens are the healthiest part of the plant and are ranked among the world’s top 10 healthiest foods!

Health Beets

The main lesson I learned from last year was that you can’t slack on the weeding and “make it up on volume”. It’s much more productive to plant a smaller garden and keep it well weeded that a huge garden that doesn’t get tended. The harvest of corn, peppers, potatoes and onions last year was pathetic where I let the weeds take over.

Blueberry patch

Another lesson learned is how incredibly “fruitful” our perennial fruit plants are. The blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and apple trees are healthy, abundant, and require almost no work on my part. Minimum input, maximum output.


This has led us to more conversations about what other kinds of fruit we should be planting. Cherry, apricot, peach and plum trees may be in our future.

The only trick is finding ripe fruit before our kids do.

Picking blueberries

Maple syrup and more

Bottling the last batch of maple syrup

Been a busy week here at the Grovestead. We finished bottling the last of our maple syrup on Wednesday. We collected a little over 2 gallons of syrup this year out of 65 gallons of sap. That made 35 half-pint jars of 100% pure Maple Syrup. We even have enough to sell some extra this year. Stay tuned!

Hardening off tomato seedlings

Meanwhile… I’m about halfway through the process of hardening off our tomato seedlings. I started setting them outside for 2 hours a day, and gradually increase the time each day. Next week they’ll be ready to transplant in the ground.

Planting more garden beds

Planted peas and onion sets today between thunderstorms (and sometimes during). About 200-300 of each. This is my first experience with plastic mulch. I’m not sure what to think yet.

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