Gardening at Starlight Cascade Gardens is for food, seed saving, therapy, and getting to know the land and the vegetables and fruits you grow.

We mainly grow environmentely, and organic food. We do not use pesticides, fungicides,or herbicides. All bug squishing is done with fingers and heels. This also gives you the chance to see the plants up close, and learn what is normal, and what is now.

Heirloom Tomatoes, beans, peas, potatoes, broccoli, dill, cucumbers, egg plants, zuchinni, lettuce, radishes, leeks, onions, carrots and peppers are what is being grown for food and seed saving in 2009. The garlic is getting ready. The potatoes have flowered, and the Blue Victor has produced seed balls. Some of the potatoes had to struggle to grow this year, due to the seed potatoes sprouting to early, and expending all their energy. For three of them, Carola, Warba, Russet, these potatoes will all be kept for seed next year, and better cooler storage for the fall of 2009.

This is the first year we have grown onions, leeks, egg plant, broccoli, which is an Italian variety, and the cabbage moth and worms, love them.

There are a few garlic plants that were harvested last night (July 30, 2009). This year is the first year that the Leek Moth showed up in our garlic in April/May, and right away we were squishing the little worms. the 2008 plantings were in Garden 1, which is located on the North side of the fence line. Good drainage, and most was covered with straw. There were three rows of uncovered garlic that were lost to the winter cold.

Here is a chart of what was harvested July 30, 2009

  • Name of Garlic -Inchelium
  • Size- 1″- 1 1/2″ in diameter
  • Comments-These were bulbouls from 2008 harvest. These were platned in a large pot, they were root bound, with 3-9″ long roots-also planted in the spring of 2009
  • Name of Garlic-Shouldice
  • Size-1- 2 1/2″ diameter
  • Comments-New planting in fall 2008 fairly small, and only 4 cloves- early variety
  • Name of Garlic-Alberta Hardy
  • Size-1-1 1/2″ diameter
  • Comments-small 5 cloves, lost 1 in winter, new planting in fall 2008
  • The Tomato plants have lots of green and flowers some tomatoes, but not as many as last year. We tied them up to late this year, and this may have hampered some of the growth. Lots of rain, not many days of sunshine or heat as well.

    The tomatoes where hiding the carrots, though the tops are quite tall. I only had a few seeds of each varieity, the Scarlet Nantes, and Chateney.

    I grew an Italian Broccoli this year, not sure if I would grow it again, lots of leaves, hardly any broccoli bits, and they go to flower to quickly. The Cabbage moths love them.

    Only two cucumber plants came up and are now in bloom, the others died off. Only one eggplant has grown, so this will be for eating. The three zuchinni plants are finally blooming, and there are small zuchinni’s growing.

    There are many new varieties of tomatoes this year. One called Elbe from 2001 seed, is growing nicely. Many little experiments with the types, Eros, the Green Tomato?? unknown, growing for identification. Three plants that are a red tomatoe, apparently early and likes cold weather, growing for identification. One tomato plant from a set of 4 French Tomatoes from France is growing. We have Traveller, Mortage Lifter, Black Krim, Yellow Pear. Our favourites, Black Prince, Pineapple, Brandywine, Golden Yellow, Burgess Stuffing, Orange Russian, and ground cherries that have a husk coat over them.

    Again, I planted too much. We ending up getting a few more potato types, Irish Cobbler and Green Mountain and these went in the large dirt pile, we have have Potato Hill. The deers like the Irish cobbler tops, and the potato beetle bug like the all. Including the other potatoes, Morning Glory, Blue Victor, and the Blue Victor potatoes grown by the 2008 seed ball seeds from Kathy Rothermel of Windkeeper Farms, who got them from Robert and Carol Mouck.

    Another project, the Japanese radishes have gone to flower and seed, but I took a radish from the market, and planted one out. It grew leaves and went to seed. It has produced seed pods, but they have not dried out yet.

    The three types of peas, Alaska, Grey Dwarf (my favourite) and Monk Peas, are drying on the vines now. The lettuce (Honey Crunch, Rouge Hiv’re, Black Seed Simpson, and Artic King have gone to flower. I only had about 6 seeds of the Black Seed Simpson left this year, and they all came up, but I don’t know if the flowers all opened or not. We have had so much rain, and so little warmth and sun this summer.

    The garlic bulboul tests are doing well, one as noted above is harvested, there are still three sets not ready yet.

    Lots to do, so hopefully tomorrow we can get some more garlic harvested.

    Now my question to everyone, when do you pull the potato seed balls and smoosh them out for seed, and when do you lie down the onions to make the bulbs bigger? Do you do this with the leeks as well?