U.S.A., Washington State. USDA zone 8a. Sunset climate zone 5

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Kitchen Garden Blooms

There are some lovely blooms in my kitchen garden right now. They look like bright splashes of color on the green beds and cheer me up during the not-so-bright days which are too cool and wet even by our northwestern standards.

Tuscan Arugula. The other names of this herb are: rocket, roquette, rugula, garden rocket, rocket-salad, oruga, rocket-gentle, raukenkohl (German), rouquelle (French), rucola (Italian). I find its flowers fascinating, although I would prefer not to see them so soon after planting. We barely tasted these aragula before the plants started to bolt. It was rather unusual since this spring was so cool and wet. I think I will try to save some seeds.

Collard Greens
Aren't they beautiful, these blossoms? Again, as with the aragula, I was a bit disappointed with these plants. The store-bought starter plants were planted in fall. They never produced good leaves and the best that I had were these lovely yellow blooms. I am going to let some of them go to seed. Were you lucky with your fall planting of cool season varieties?


Squash. This is an example of how tricky a photograph can be. The bloom is pretty, but the same can not be said about the whole plant. It was purchased at a school plant sale. It is small, doesn't look strong and might not make it. Honestly, I bought it just to show my support to the students who grew it. On the other hand, squash is a tough plant and it can surprise me. I'll give it a chance!

Tomatoes. So far, I planted 14 tomato plants. In comparison with the plants shown in the other photos, they are doing well. Some of them are blooming. My Sungold already has several little green tomatoes. I bought it at the local farmers market, and it's my biggest tomato plant. The others, which are smaller, don't look as impressive as the Sungold. Tomatoes need at least 55 degrees at night to grow well and so far it has been too cool.
Fava Beans. I love their small delicate blooms.
These are upright plants. They can grow without any support, but I staked them anyway.
By the way, do you know that fava beans (also known as broad beans, pigeon beans, horse beans, and windsor beans) actually belong to the pea family?

Broccoli is doing good and will be ready for eating soon. I laughed when I read what Millie wrote in her blog Dogs and Country : "The bizarre thing about producing beautiful vegetables.. is that we help them along and then ..EAT them." It's true!

Chives. Reminder for myself: remove the flowers before they seed! I already have more chives then we can eat. Before the school year ended, I potted some of these plants and gave them to the teachers.
Next week promises to be sunny. After a cloudy and wet May as well as the first part of June, we need some sun!

Copyright 2010 TatyanaS


  1. AnonymousJune 12, 2010

    Dear Tatyana, Such a pretty potager - good enough to eat! It really is amazing, as you show here, the variety and beauty of the flowers of vegetables, fruit and herbs.

  2. I could do with some nice cloudy days, as we have been in the high 90's and we are expected to get in the triple digits ( w/ humidity )for the next 4-5 days. hot , hot, hot ! take care, Gina

  3. Beautiful pictures of your veggies! 14 tomato plants! WOW. What other types did you plant? Sungold is one of my favorites. I have to make the same note-to-self. My chives have overrun my herb bed!
    Hope your squash produce for you. We've had mixed success.

  4. Beautiful T! A gorgeous post and tribute to the kitchen garden treasures!Yay!!

  5. You have made some beautiful photos from things I see every day. Even you found a way to include some information. Yay for you!
    I love the little purple chives flowers. I am not currently growing any...but I did see some pretty yellow flowers on a couple of Joi Choi that were to slug-eaten to be marketed. They are similar and very pretty up close. A few of my veggies are bolting because of heat and humidity. Bleh.

  6. Hi Tatyana,

    Nom nom, I'm feelng hungry now!!! Yummy Tomatoes to look forward to later in the season :)

  7. Such a nice kitchen garden and loveley photos, thank you for sharing

  8. AnonymousJune 12, 2010

    I agree with you on arugula flowering too soon. We had only 2 weeks of harvest and then it bolted. But it looks pretty.
    You have a beautiful veggie garden.

  9. Wowsers what a busy vegetable gardener you are. Curious flowers at the top. And how about that arugula, never saw it flower.
    Bet you the squash will make it. Like you said, the flowers are pretty, but the rest is kind of not.
    The faaaaava, so coool. Must look for that one. I purchased some plants the other days, but missed the bean section.
    Don't know how much experience you have with broccoli, but I recommend you soak the florets in generously salted water before you cook to relieve it of potential and likely broccoli worm.

    Sounds good with a sunny week ahead.



  10. AnonymousJune 12, 2010

    Tatyana, All these flowers look lovely, even if you would prefer that some of them had held off for another few weeks. I have made that note to myself about the chive flowers more often than I can count, but I have never actually gotten around to deadheading them all -- with the predictable result that every year there are more of them to deadhead! -Jean

  11. What a pretty kitchen garden! I haven't planted many herbs this year. The parsley never came up so I planted more seeds. I hope they take.

    This year the poppies came up from last year's seeds. They don't transplant well so I'm glad they are in a good place and can grow where they are. When I plant seeds I do it in December. I sprinkle them on the ground. I'm not sure how they would do in your climate but I'll be glad to send you seeds to try. Email your address and I'll mail seeds to you in late summer.

  12. It's so much fun to see the delight in the beauty of growing veggies!

  13. Such beautiful pictures, and so much colour! You have the pretties kitchen garden ever!! :o)

  14. The arugula bloom is very pretty! My own vegetable garden is small, but I was just thinking today as i ate a fresh tomato, that veggies are ultimately as satisfying as ornamentals. There is just nothing like eating my own produce!

    I wish I had some of your cool weather! Current temp here is 93, but with the humidity feels even warmer!

  15. Your veggies are wonderful looking! They look better than many of the perennial border plants.


  16. Wonderful shots of healthy robust plants from your garden!

  17. AnonymousJune 13, 2010

    You know, Tatyana, my green have begun flowering already too. I have a theory about that. I might be wrong but I think it might have more to do with daylight length than temperature. In other words when we've got a sunrise at 5:30AM and a sunset at 9:15PM, [approx.] this is an awfully long day light period and maybe this is what sends our leafy greens bolting.

    Despite my theories, your flowers are lovely. You treated yours with much more respect than I did with mine. Into the compost bin they went. :)

  18. Your vegetable all look good despite the weather. The slugs ate quite a bit of ours, including the zucchini plants I just planted last week.
    Hopefully you had a nice sunny weekend down there and I bet your plants loved it.

  19. AnonymousJune 13, 2010

    Hi Tanya,

    You have the prettiest kitchen garden ever!! Enjoyed going through the photos of all your healthy plants!

    Loved that you stopped by my blog the other day...thanks:))

  20. I honestly feel relieved that for once we don't have a monopoly on cool evenings and wet weather.

  21. You can make chive blossom vinegar, Tatyana. Beautiful vegetables in bloom!

    That is funny about how we nurture their progress merely to eat them; I guess almost alll farming is the same, really. :)

  22. that rucola is awesome, I must have it ;-) thanks for showing ...

  23. So many overlook the beauty of vegetables. I'm so glad you don't and that you shared these beautiful photographs with all of us! Thank you!


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