It’s been about a month since I planted my garden.

Here’s how it started.

June Garden

Here’s what it looks like one month later. What a little sun and rain will do, when you start with good dirt…

July garden

Without a wide-angle lens, I can’t get the whole thing in. But you get the idea.

So far, we’ve enjoyed Swiss Chard, Bok Choy, the usual lettuces, peas, snow peas, beets, all kinds of herbs (most of which I dry for use throughout the year), and all kinds of berries.

Forget the birds and rabbits. With dogs who like raspberries and blueberries as much as the humans do, it’s hard to collect enough to bring in the house. We usually just stand out in the berry patches and chow down. The only reason these are left is because they’re not fully ripe yet.

garden-july-blueberry.jpg

So far, the rabbits have enjoyed most of my edamame and some of my bean plants. But they’ve left everything else alone.

Zucchinis and green beans are almost ready. Hot weather crops (tomatoes, peppers, eggplants) have quite a way to go. But the vines are starting to take off like crazy. I love my pumpkins and squashes. Can’t tell you why, but they always put a smile on my face.

I wanted to test a couple of new seeds this year. I selected two different snow peas: Oregon Giant and Melting Sugar Snow Peas. The Oregon Giant is truly gigantic and surprisingly sweet for the size (pods are up to 5″ long), but not very prolific. The Melting Sugar is an heirloom and more of a traditional snow pea. And much more bountiful. Because space is at a premium in my garden, I’ll be sticking with the heirloom.

Swiss ChardAnd because I’m always looking for ways to trick my family to eat more of a variety of vegetables (some of which they’re inclined to turn up their noses), I like to share the recipes that are hits around here. The winner, by a landslide, for chard is from Cooks.com

SWISS-CHARD BAKE

1 1/2 lb. Swiss chard
1/2 onion, minced
2 tbsp. butter
4 eggs, well beaten
1 c. buttermilk
2 tbsp. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
Few drops of pepper sauce
1 pkg. shredded cheddar cheese
Wash and peel stems from chard and drop in boiling water. Cook about 3 minutes before adding the leaves. Cook another 3 minutes. Remove from water and cut into pieces. Cook onion in butter a few minutes. Then add the Swiss chard to skillet with onion and butter stirring constantly to combine the flavor of onion and butter. Set aside.Beat eggs, add buttermilk, flour and salt and pepper. Mix well together. Combine cheese. In greased casserole place a layer of chard and a layer of cheese until all in dish. Cover with egg mixture. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Happy 4th everyone.

And please don’t forget to give your noise-sensitive dogs benadryl a few hours before the fireworks begin.

The dosage for Benadryl is as follows: Dosage every 8 hours
Dogs under 30 lbs and Cats : 10 mg
Dogs 30-50 lbs: 25 mg
Dogs over 50 lbs: 50 mg