Good Plants and Holey Plants

The garden is growing so quickly, so it’s time to post some more photos.

The pea plants are beginning to climb the trellis.

Many of the greens are almost ready to be harvested…

The bean plants are taking over.  It’s a jungle out there…

It won’t be long before this one begins producing some squash…

Isn’t this beautiful?

Look at those super-sized leaves…

This is so amazing…

This bean plant is climbing all the way to the top…

Here is another bean plant that has reached out to grab the trellis…

We are also growing potatoes in 5-gallon buckets and feeding them fish water every few days…

Here are some blueberry bushes and flowers in a raised bed garden next to our sidewalk…

….and lots of strawberries are on the other side of the sidewalk.  Unfortunately, we just learned that we have termites in our home, so it will be treated with Termidor on Monday.  We would prefer a green treatment, but we haven’t found any effective alternatives.  The worst part is that the exterminator said we won’t be able to grow any edible plants within five feet of our home for the next ten years, so all of these strawberries (and many others) will be transplanted this weekend.

We also have a holey plant.  This broccoli plant has been invaded by some type of worm, larvae, or caterpillar.  I squashed them all after this photo was taken, but there are probably more.  It’s surprising that we have only found them on the broccoli.  Do you know what these are?

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49 Responses to Good Plants and Holey Plants

  1. Looks fabulous! I can’t wait for my garden to get going!

  2. Megan says:

    Wow! Your plants look fabulous! I might have to try your methods next year!

  3. vkhanson says:

    I am a weee bit jealous of you all. Wish I could have that ecosystem….but am content enough with mine. Keep those pics coming as I am gardening vicariously though your blog.

  4. AmySue says:

    Wow, everything looks great! I love your pea trellis and am jealous you already have greens. Could the worm eating your broccoli be cabbage worm? Have wonderful weekend!

    • Yes, I’ll bet you’re right. Now the challenge will be to find a way to get rid of them without harming the fish. Maybe ladybugs, green lacewings, or praying mantis? I wonder if diatamaceous earth will work.

  5. keileigh says:

    Evrrything looks so happy! Love seeing all those green leaves! 🙂 Hope the termite problem gets resolved quickly.

  6. narf77 says:

    Those holes are probably Pieris rapae The cabbage butterfly. It’s amazing how they can find even 1 cruciferous plant in a garden bed! I love how everything is so green and healthy and it looks fantastic. That sucks about the termites but we once saw just how terrible a termite infestation (and expensive) could be to remedy so its best you knock them on the head now. Until climate change kicks in, we don’t actually have house eating termites (apparently called “dry” termites) in Tasmania. We also don’t have foxes or heartworm in dogs and cats all thanks to being an island off the derierre of Australia. We do, however, have our Aussie equivalent of those delightful Cabbage butterflies and I dare say long after humans have left the building there will still be little white flitting butterflies hunting out those last few self seeding cruciferous vegetables…

  7. narf77 says:

    By the way…have you thought about putting your strawberries on a vertical hydroponic (could even be adapted to aquaponic) system? You could even make it an arty piece like some of the really pretty ones I have seen online. Strawberries, in particular, seem to love being hung up and elevated and the insects have a harder time finding those sweet juicy jewels when they are head height…might be something to consider?

  8. looks beautiful! good job! I can’t wait till we get our system built and we can start planting. So sorry about the termites…hope transplanting goes well. Thanks for the continued update on the garden =) how are your chickens?

  9. Meredith says:

    Nice! Looking good. Too bad about the termites, and the strawberry patch.

  10. The main problem we have with strawberries is the snails. But snails are easily dealt with – just pt a shallow dish of beer out there for them.

  11. I’m jealous, your beans are way bigger than mine! They look great. I like your trellis, I may need to attach something like that to the sides of my beds. Keep up the good work!

  12. If it’s the cabbage moth caterpillar it would be a green caterpillar. Is that it? When I get them (and I always do on brassicas) they tend to eat larger chunks and whole leaves,not just small holes. My defence is to 1) pick them off (I now feed them to my chickens – wouldn’t your fish like them?) 2) squash all eggs (small white or light green specks on the leaves) 3) spray with a homemade mixture of a couple drops of oil, a couple drops of dishwashing soap, a roughly squished garlic, a chilli and a liter of water. If you make a batch and leave it for a few days the chilli and garlic saturate the water. The soap and oil kill any eggs (smothers them – also kills aphids and other sucking insects) and the garlic and chilli smell repel the moths so you should get fewer caterpillars in the future.

    I leave the squashed garlic (don’t really crush it or it will clog your sprayer) and chilli in the bottle and keep adding more water/soap/oil as I use it up.

    To be honest, this is only moderately effective. It needs to be reapplied after rain (or ever couple of weeks), can’t be applied in hot sun (spray at the end of the day) or it burns the leaves and I still get some of the caterpillars. Hence 1) and 2) above are an every present gardening activity.

    Good luck!

    • They were about 1/4″ to 1/2″ in length and very thin, light green to yellow-green in color, worm-like, and very fragile – easily squashed. They were laying flat on the leaf and did not move like an inch-worm as some sites describe. I didn’t see any eggs. Thanks for the suggestions!

  13. Yep, that’s them.

    I should mention the oil I refer to in my homemade repellant is normal veggie oil – whatever you have in your kitchen.

  14. All of your plants look Wonderful!

  15. Looking good. Get rid of snails with compost tea. Compost tea is more or less a liquid version of compost. You take your solid compost, and soak it in water and let the mixture sit around for a few hours or a few days. Then you pour the liquid through a screen, or through cheesecloth or something similar to strain out the solid material into a bucket. What you have then is compost tea.

    Compost tea is great, because it is a very mild, organic liquid fertilizer that provides beneficial live organisms that improve the soil where you use it. It doesn’t burn plants like store bought fertilizers can. All the best!

  16. Looking good. Here in Yorkshire (norhtern UK) I’m waiting for my peas to germinate. Later today I’m going to be planting some sweet peas. Also I’ve never come across the instructables site before, its great!

  17. croftgarden says:

    Green gardening – feed the bugs to the chickens.
    Congratulations you’re doing really well, don’t know how you have time to blog!

  18. babso2you says:

    It all grows so quickly doesn’t it? Did you know that marigolds act as a bug repellent in the garden? I scatter them around the garden. They do not get rid of everything, but they help! I am not sure if they can get rid of those worms, but like the idea of letting the chickens get involved!

  19. Wow – what great growth! We had more snow last week…but seedlings have now been started inside so hopefully we are timing it just right…. Love all the nice green leaves!

  20. Lynn says:

    Hi there! I only have pepers and strawberries but I feel very proud on how they are growing.
    I couldn’t say what sort of worms they are.

  21. Everything is looking so healthy!

  22. Very cool. And if you find out what the bugs are, be sure to let me know.

  23. Love the pics. Maybe I’ll catch some of you green thumb!!

  24. Barbara Good says:

    Wow, that progress is amazing! I’ve just read you’re blog from the start, what an interesting growing experience. I love the concept and the thought of growing your own fish and prawns, well that would be amazing. Can’t wait to see how it continues.

  25. Wei-Chuen says:

    btw, what made you decide a raft system instead the hydroton grow bed?

    • Two reasons…First, we learned about aquaponics from Susanne and Tim at and they use the raft system. Second, we would like to start a commercial aquaponics business someday, and we have heard that the raft system is the most efficient and cost effective way to grow commercially. We hope to add some Hydroton grow beds soon so we can grow carrots and larger plants.

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