Archives for category: Grow Fruit

I’m from the South, and there’s nothing I love more than corn, tomatoes and watermelon. I knew if I had a garden I had to grow all three. You’ve seen my tomato episode. Please watch and share “Kaye’s Watermelon Story” – Episode 19. Since I only had a 6’x6′ space, I had to grow baby watermelons.

If I had it to do over again, knowing what I know now, I would grow them in raised beds with trellises to save space. Hope you enjoy my little tale! – Kaye

This is the first year in the ten years we have had the pineapple guava tree that the squirrels have left the guavas alone, and I have been able to gather a handful of fallen guavas every day. I also have guavas on one of the bushes planted in pots.

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Pineapple Guavas

I’m not a fancy cook, so I really didn’t know what to do with them and regret I’ve let some go to waste, but there were so many today, I had to come up with something. I’ve never even eaten one, so my neighbor, C.L., told me to slice them in half and spoon out the insides. I decided to make a simple non-dairy smoothie.

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Pineapple Guava Fruit

I scooped out about two cups of fruit. And since guava juice makes me think of Hawaii and pineapples, I added a cup of pineapple chunks and a cup of ice. I did not grow the pineapple!

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Blender with Ice, Pineapple and Pineapple Guava

I blended it, and gave a cup to my teenager, who loved it, and knowing how he loves popsicles, decided to pull out the popsicle form that I haven’t used in several years, and poured the rest into that.

Popsicle Form Full of Pineapple Guava

Popsicle Form Full of Pineapple Guava

I froze them for a couple of hours, and my son tried one, and he loved it! These no-drip forms are really cool and you can suck the melting juice from the built in tube.

Pineapple Guava and Pineapple Popsicle

Pineapple Guava and Pineapple Popsicle

Pineapple guava has a very distinctive, indescribable taste, so blending in a little pineapple gives it enough familiarity to make it delicious, and you don’t need sugar. With all these warm winds that have been blowing, I’ve been feeling a little tropical, so this cool treat hits the spot!

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Pineapple Guavas Hanging from the Tree

Pineapple guavas are exactly the color of the back of the leaves, so they are really hard to see until they fall to the ground. Luckily, the skin is hard, so unless you have squirrels taking a bite out of them, harvesting is as easy as picking them up off the ground. Anyone ever tried growing pineapple guava or making something with it? Have a recipe to share? Thanks for stopping by! – Kaye

My baby watermelon plants are confused. Do they not know it’s nearly Halloween? I think they think they are pumpkins!

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Baby Watermelon Growing in Late October

I photographed four baby watermelons, on separate vines this morning at 8AM.

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Two Baby Watermelons

After a long summer of low production, my neighbor, C.L., remarked he thought I should be watering more. Because I hand-water everything, I get tired of standing over my watermelons with the hose, and the water was staying near the surface and not penetrating through my hard clay soil to the roots. When I started leaving the hose dripping over each vine overnight once or twice a week, the plants started coming alive and I have numerous blooms and more little melons.

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Yellow Watermelon Blossom

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Sweet Baby Watermelon

The infamous Santa Ana winds are blowing and did a number on my newly planted Asclepias speciosa milkweed last night. But, the baby watermelons are snug to the ground so it will be interesting to see how these develop and how long it goes. I vow not to pull up my vines as long as there is a melon growing on it!

Thanks for stopping by! Are you still nursing summer crops or is that all finished for this year in your garden? – Kaye

I took Melissa, from Live Love Be Green’s, advice about my little lemon tree, and removed all leaves with mealy bugs. I agree it was mealy bug. I disposed of them in the garbage. Then, I mixed up a batch of spray: a few drops of plant-based dish soap, a teaspoon of raw apple cider vinegar, and for good measure, 2 drops each of peppermint and thyme essential oils (I have no idea if this will do anything, but, it smells nice!) in a large spray bottle of water and sprayed each remaining leaf, front and back. The ants, which were racing all around the cottony puffs of mealy bug, were not happy. Neither was a spider that had spun a web between two lemons. I also removed two sucker branches. This is how it looks now.

If I removed every yellow leaf on the tree, it would be pretty bare, so I left the few without bugs. I would cut back some more of those long sucker branches, but, they have lemons on them. This is the only lemon that’s starting to turn. This is a Meyer Lemon tree. I love Meyer Lemons!

I recently fed the tree and changed the watering schedule, so, fingers crossed! Thanks for stopping by! – Kaye

We planted several olive trees before I ever started on the vegetable garden. Only two are in the ground, and they both have olives.

Naturally, I paid no attention to the variety when they were planted. When one of the potted olive trees grew a single olive, I read up on olives and it seemed like a ton of work. No more olives came, and I thought, “Whew!” And forgot about it. But, now, the two trees in the ground have olives. The smaller tree above, has two dozen and they are olive size. The larger tree has a couple hundred, I’m guessing, of these little olives, and they haven’t gotten any bigger in a couple of months.

I guess I better read up on olives again! Thanks for stopping by on a real hot day! – Kaye

My so-called “everbearing” lemon tree, has not born a ripe lemon since last November. It had quite a lot of blooms in the spring, but, it’s September, and, though carrying two dozen lemons, the leaves don’t look so well. I recently gave it more iron, organic plant food, alfalfa meal, worm castings and biodynamic compost, and dropped daily watering to twice per week deep watering. I’m hoping that helps. I could have been watering too much. There’s a long sucker branch that’s grown out of it this year. Are you supposed to cut those off?

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There is one bloom on it now. I’m not sure what to make of that. One of the green lemons is starting to turn yellow, but it’s got a ways to go.

I should have not taken on so many different fruits and vegetables for my first garden, since I didn’t know anything about gardening. But, I did, so any advice is welcome! Thanks for stopping by! – Kaye

Today a few raindrops fell. It hasn’t rained since April, so I grabbed my camera.

This Japanese melon did not get wet, but I included it because it’s green!

This is about all the rain we got before it stopped.

Imagine growing a whole summer garden of vegetables with only city water, but that’s what you have to do in an urban So. Cal garden! Thanks for stopping by! – Kaye

Well, it’s been a lot longer than the 73 days marked on the seedlings tag to get ripe watermelons, in fact, only five have been removed from the vines, either by me, or two by a thief. It began to look like my watermelon exercise was a bust. Alas, my neighbor, C.L., observed that I might not be watering enough. So, for the last week, I’ve watered every day whether the ground was wet or dry. Today, I counted more than a dozen new blooms! Blooms are only about an inch in diameter.

There were three melons growing together on this one vine.

Remember the odd-shaped one from the earlier post, “Watermelon, Watering & Bugs?” This is how it looks today. It’s filling out!

I removed some of the vines that I had stepped on one too many times, and with the additional watering, and continuing hot, sunny weather, I may have a few good melons to savor after all! Thanks for reading! – Kaye

I finally decided to cut my fourth baby watermelon. It had not gotten any bigger in two weeks. You recall two were stolen and smashed by critter or human on my neighbors’ front steps. I draped netting over the patch after the theft. The first one I ate and it wasn’t very sweet.

I cut this one and popped it in the frig before I slaved in the hot sun, pulling out the corn, and turning the soil over with a shovel.

So, when I finished work, soaked from sweat, I went to my prize, and sliced her open. Alas, too late. It was sweet, but too far gone. I got a few bites out of it. I shouldn’t have waited.

I remember so well growing up and visiting my grandmothers, and we’d cut open a melon, and if it wasn’t perfect they’d say, “Go back to the field and cut another one.” And we would, and we’d sit around in a circle on the lawn under the merciful shade of a big maple tree, and eat watermelon, (with salt!) till our insides hurt. Well, I had one more in my patch the same size, but younger. I took a chance and cut it. Nope, not ripe. Oh, for some more space to grow watermelon! 🙂 Thanks for stopping! – Kaye

I seeded this Royal Burgundy Bean inside in the middle of June.

Along with this Japanese Melon seedling. Out of 12 seedlings of various vegetables planted, only three were viable, and a Japanese Parsley croaked outside.

I hardened these seedling outside on the front porch with part sun, part shade, for a couple of weeks.

Then I planted them, did everything right. I planted them in the bright sun (figuring we only have about a month left of long sunny days and they’d need every day), still in the cups, which are supposed to biodegrade. After one week, the bean looks like this.

It added a couple of leaves right away, then, the original leaves fell off, and the rest are yellow and withering. I am watering every day. So, it’s either too much water, or too strong of sun. It’s been very hot and sunny for here, so it was quite an adjustment going out there, or maybe I’m just overwatering? The melon is faring better.

The same melon species, but, a month older.

Advice welcome! Thanks for stopping by! New episode of “Late Bloomer – Monarchs and Milkweed” will be online tonight. Please check it out! – Kaye

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