Sunday, July 12, 2009

Vegie Garden Update + Request for HELP!

In late-April I decided it might be nice to plant a vegie patch and make an attempt at growing some Winter vegetables.

I knew it was going to be a challenge, as I am very much a gardening novice. But I went ahead and chose the spot in the back garden that I thought would be best for planting some vegetables: Where there is sun in the morning and shade in the late afternoon, where water retains, where the pup cannot reach and destroy, and where I can best keep a watchful eye.

At first the plants were growing beautifully, especially the cabbage and the spinach. They shot up and appeared wonderfully healthy, and I thought I would see vegetables in no time.

But, alas! The plants were then attacked by grubs, particularly the cauliflower and cabbage plants, and I had to make a bee-line for some organic bug spray otherwise I would have been left with no plants at all.

The spray has worked wonders in keeping the pests away. Yes, the grubs and moths and grasshoppers still get in the occasional nibble, but I'm not left with nothing but a stem, which is good.

However, over the past two to three weeks I have noticed a significant lack of growth from the cauli, cabbage and spinach plants. They are pretty much the same size as they were a month ago and I cannot figure out why.

I water. I fertilise. I mulch. I keep the pests away. Yet my plants are starting to look a little wiltered and shriveled.

I'd blame frost if we'd had any, but we havent.
There has, however, been some terribly cold mornings, a lot of cloudy days, and a fair bit of rain. Could it be my plants are not getting enough sun/warmth? The soil appears good, but perhaps I need to add more fertiliser, or try a fertiliser of a different kind? Perhaps it has been too wet (if that is possible for our particular area: Flinders Ranges)?

The onions, carrots and parsley I planted appear to be doing fine and are not suffering the same fate.

If you think you may know what is causing the problem with my vegie plants (if indeed there is one), and know how to fix it, I would very much appreciate the help. These plants have been in two months already, and I just thought they'd be bigger by now.


  1. I don’t know much about growing veggies but… My first guess is the temperature. Maybe get, I don’t know what it’s called in English but it’s this kind of cloth and you tuck them in when there’s a cold night, we do that here in Sweden in the spring.

    Or maybe you can build a cold frame or perhaps some sort of cloche/mini greenhouse so that the plants stay warm. It doesn’t have to be that hard, just a clear plastic box over the plant should help.

    You can also try to isolate the garden with a wall and bushes, it will make the garden more sheltered from wind and cold and can help a little.

    Hope it helps

  2. Isn't it disapointing when the veggies don't thrive? Good luck!

  3. Bummer! I wish I knew the solution to growing things- I'd love a garden myself. Alas, I don't think it is meant to be. Good luck!

  4. How are they doing now? I grow my own veggies too (or try to at least!) and I remember thinking something similar about some of my plants. I planted everything, it looked wonderful at first but then everything seemed to just stop for a while. I don't have an explanation for it, but then they did start growing again. I hope yours are doing well now!

    Oh, and I love your blog so much I've added you to my blog roll too =)


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