May Garden Update

Indoor plants: 

The key lime tree is now about 10 inches tall and has begun to grow branches. It also developed tiny thorns, which I find adorable and will continue to do so until one stabs me. I’ve been meaning to start clipping the thorn tips with nail clippers, but that hasn’t happened yet.

Small thorns on a young key lime tree.

The African violet, grafted cactus, and Thanksgiving cactus seem to be very content with their part-shade spot in the living room. I have one little ivy plant left from the garden club plant sale this spring that I’m nursing back to health. It suffered a combination overwatering/dropped pot accident but seems to be doing much better now. It put out its first new leaves yesterday, which is a good sign.

Outdoor plants:

Well, my thyme has died. I think it wasn’t a fan of the hotter weather we’ve been getting. The lemon balm is struggling and the basil has bolted. I think the unglazed terra cotta pots they’re in dry out too fast for them to be happy.

The strawberries are doing well, but again, I’m having a problem with the pots without saucers drying out too fast. It doesn’t quite make sense because it’s so humid here. The plants are growing, blooming, and starting to set tiny strawberries though so they can’t be too unhappy.

Lemon balm, currant tomato, carrot, basil, and strawberry plants on a balcony.

My tomato plant that I started last July is still blooming, much to my surprise, as is the one I started this winter. Both seem to be doing well and I’m looking forward to having lots of little tomatoes this summer. The carrots I’ve pulled so far have been very sweet and flavorful. I should probably harvest the rest soon. I definitely plan on growing this variety (little finger) again.

Apple trees, ivy, and strawberry plants on a balcony.

Despite being in “isolation” and relatively neglected, the apple trees are still alive. I expected the spider mites and the heat to kill them, but nope. I also can’t find any signs of the mites any more. The ivy in isolation is fairing a bit worse, but it did have more extensive mite damage.

Summer Garden Plans:

The most important of these is to NOT get any more plants. It’s so tempting and difficult, but I’ll be moving back home at the end of the summer and am not planning on taking many plants with me. Most of the plants will either be dead by the end of the summer, or I’ll put in the community garden. I also have an awesome friend who will be taking the strawberry plants, but I still need to figure out what to do with the apple trees. I don’t want to kill them, but I don’t necessarily want to take them with me either.

Instead of getting more plants I’m hoping to plan out my fall garden. I will have access to a 3’ x 7’ raised bed and I have to decide what I want to grow. I also hope to read through a botany textbook. I think having a better understanding of plants will make me a better gardener. Other than that, I don’t really see much happening on the gardening front this summer, just trying to keep everything alive.

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