California Gardening Garden Tour – May 2019 Organic Gardening Tips & Advice

October 11, 2019

some interesting additions to the
California garden bountiful spring harvest some helpful tips for your
raised bed garden and a lot more in today’s episode of California gardening
we will begin with a garden tour we will look at all the harvests we made we have
some things for you to do in your garden and finally we will look at some cool
gardening products so let’s begin with the garden tour starting with the raised
beds we have our black Cobra pepper that was overwinter is producing a lot of
peppers now followed by the Anaheim chili peppers which are doing okay and
the container prince eggplant which we planted a lot of these in this raised
bed right next to the eggplants we have the
okras and because the weather has not been very warm some of these okra plants
are not doing that well but hopefully they will start picking up as the
weather warms up and our tomato jungle as you can see here just for tomato
plants but they have taken off and are producing a lot of tomatoes on the other
side we have some more okra plants again not doing that well and we are growing
some beans as you can see here right along the edge of the bed and on the other bed the first bed we
have some onions that are still growing couple of eggplant some cucumbers and
here we have some hyacinth beans that are growing they are just sprouting and
it will be a little bit of time before they become big plants and that
concludes the tour of our raised beds let’s now look at the containers we are
trying to grow a loquat tree for the first time and I’m super excited about
it our volunteer tomato plant has produced
a lot of tomatoes as you can see here in this container our container Prince eggplant has now
produced eggplants as you can see beautiful looking eggplants
and we are also trying to grow a mango tree and I’m very excited for this as
well we have some amaranth greens that are
growing in this container we have a lone cauliflower that will be
harvested next month and our potatoes The Container potatoes
are growing very well and I’m pretty impressed with how long they have been
growing and now let’s look at the harvest we
made beginning with cilantro now cilantro is a cool season crop grows
best in the cooler spring and the fall weather and we were noticing that the
cilantro was beginning to bold since the temperatures were warming up a little
bit this week actually was quite warm and as you can see here the harvest
looks quite good and once your cilantro starts bolting what you can do is start
chopping off the cilantro at the stems and then the top part of the cilantro
will still give you a lot of cilantro as you can see here it’s a pretty good
harvest and fresh cilantro is absolutely amazing and as you can see here the stems have
now become more woody and almost about to bolt and you’ll see a difference once
the stems reach to this size where they have become woody now you can still keep
harvesting it from the sides and let the plant grow but at this stage I think
it’s a good idea to just remove the plants and then use your harvest and use
your container for the next plant you can already see some flowers growing
there and this is an indication that the cilantro has bolted and now let’s look at kohlrabi
we were growing these purple kohlrabi plants in our raised beds and this has
actually been one of the longest growing seasons for our kohlrabi and this time I
made sure we waited long enough to have good sized bulbs the last time I
harvested kohlrabi the bulbs were quite small but they were also a little more
crunchy and more usable than the large bulbs so with kohlrabi it’s just a
toss-up between either harvesting bulbs early where you get smaller bulbs or
wait for a long time and get bulbs like these the ones that you see here
that are a little woody from the outside but once you remove the skin the
kohlrabi inside is very tender very nice and it tastes amazing and here you can
see some more harvests and a question that I was asked on my Instagram post
when I posted the kohlrabi picture was how do I use my kohlrabi well the
easiest thing to do with kohlrabi is to just eat them raw they taste amazing
when eaten raw and they also taste amazing when cooked so when cooking it I
just chopped it up and then I boil it with lentils add some spices some ginger
some coconut and then just cook it up and then it tastes amazing with either
quinoa or rice and kohlrabi makes a great vegetable to grow in your garden
it is just so easy to grow kohlrabi you should give it a shot and now let’s look at mulberries we had
a mulberry tree that’s been growing in our side yard for quite a long time now
and this mulberry is the mulberry that will bloom multiple times during the
year this is I think the third time it has bloomed and produced mulberries on
this tree so although the mulberries are quite small this mulberry tree produces
a lot of mulberries and as you can see here the harvest is not that great in
volume but almost every day we were just coming picking some berries the kids
were eating it right off of the plant so if you want to get a lot of berries in a
small space this is a good variety to grow but I am going to try some other
mulberry variety is very soon and let you know how that goes and moving on to onions we were growing
this small bulbing kind of onions the ones that produces smaller bulbs but can
be eaten as spring onions and we started harvesting them from our raised bed and
these have been growing since fall so it’s been growing for quite a while and
as you can see the bulbs have formed and it’s a good time to start harvesting
these spring onions now the way these onions are eaten is by
just washing them up and then chopping them up just like you see here and
usually eaten raw I love eating these onions raw but you
can use it just like any other onion as well
since our raised bed had so many plants we harvested it little by little and
then eventually one day we just harvested them all
and this is exactly how it’s washed and eaten mostly raw
and kids love harvesting onions it’s one of their favorite vegetables to harvest
because they’re just so easy to harvest and we did grow a lot of onions in this
small space so this was a very productive raised bed and the soil that we are using for our
onions is also quite loose and that is the key to growing good onions is to
have a very well draining soil although onions do require a lot of
water just before harvest a few days or a few weeks before the harvest you can
stop watering your onions but in this case these onions are slightly different
because they are spring onions and they are eaten raw you want a little bit of
juicy flavor when you’re eating the onions
so you don’t have to stop watering completely so that the onions have a
little bit of juice left inside them and you can also harvest these onions and
then dry them just like any other onions you can leave them out in the Sun and
they will do very well they will dry out and you can store them just like any
other onions as well and as you can see here the kids love to
harvest the onions as well the soil for the onion should be light enough so that
even kids can just pull them out this is my daughter she is just pulling out
these onions with great ease and this is how it should be your soil should be
loose and it should be loose enough for the onions to be pulled out very easily
like you see here and once again gardening is a lot of joy
especially with kids kids love gardening and they love to help their parents in
the garden and it’s a real joy to do gardening with kids
and now let’s look at the black Cobra pepper this was overwintered from last
year and it did pretty well I wasn’t expecting this pepper plant to be over
wintered and produce peppers right away but overwintering your plants helps you
get your produce right at the beginning of the season
which means that since the plant is overwintered it will start triggering
fruits in the beginning or as soon as the weather is nice and warm for it to
produce peppers and as you can see there are a lot of peppers and this is an
extremely hot pepper for those of you who want to grow extremely hot peppers
this is a good option but for those of you who do not like hot peppers you may
want to try some other variety now I have a pretty good tolerance for hot
peppers and I find this pepper really hot to eat so this is a pepper that’s
very high on the Scoville rating for sure
and moving on to potatoes we were growing the Yukon Gold potatoes in our
raised beds and it was time to harvest those potatoes now I would have liked
the potatoes to grow a little longer than this harvest time but it’s still a
good time to harvest these potatoes because the potatoes were forming very
well and we harvested one potato plant just to check how big the potatoes were
and they are quite big we are using the trench method to grow
these potatoes we basically planted these potatoes in a trench and as the
plants grew we started covering them up now some people also call this the
healing method but in the hilling method generally you start at one level and
then keep adding soil over the potato plant
in the trench method you can actually plant the potato very deep and then
cover it with soil so there are similar methods but also a little different in
some ways in any case you want to make sure that you cover your potato plants
with soil once they are growing and the reason for doing that is to prevent
green potatoes from being formed on the plant the green potatoes are not edible
they should not be used and this is one of the reasons why we cover the potato
plants as they grow and in this case by planting this potato
plant in a trench it was also able to use some of the nutrients from the
native soil below the raised bed and I think that helped the potato plant grow
quite well and as you can see here these Yukon Gold
potatoes produce a lot of large potatoes and taste wise I think Yukon Gold
potatoes are extremely delicious they have a nice buttery taste to them and I
really like eating Yukon Gold potatoes and they’re also easy to grow so once
you start seeing decent size potatoes harvested from one plant you can go
ahead and harvest the other plants as well now if you are not planning to use
these potatoes right away they will store very well under ground and still
be available for consumption or storage after you harvest them later
but we still harvested all our potatoes together we wanted to use this raised
bed for the next crop and as you can see the potatoes are
quite deep into the soil and that’s because we planted them in a trench and this is one more vegetable that kids
love to harvest and this is how our first harvest looks
like as you can see quite decently sized potatoes they look pretty and they taste
absolutely delicious now since the potatoes were of decent
size we went ahead and harvested the rest of the potatoes from the raised bed and the soil for a raised bed was quite
loose and not compacted at all and that helped the potatoes grow very well in
this raised bed now for growing potatoes you want to use a lot of compost we have
a lot of worms in this bed as well that are producing vermicompost all the time
and we also have some perlite which helps with the aeration and drainage for
this raised bed mix you’re harvesting the potatoes make sure
to look around everywhere in the soil you never know where the potato is
hiding some of these potatoes can be absolutely huge so make sure you harvest
all the potatoes and once you are done harvesting just make sure you turn over
the soil in the entire raised bed and then check for any other potatoes that
might be growing now one of the things about the Yukon Gold potatoes is that it
is susceptible to blight more than most of the varieties that have grown and
when light hits you have to remove the leaves and remove all the plants and I
will be showing that in detail in a later section in this video but that’s
something to note that different potato varieties have different characteristics
and different disease resistance so the Yukon Gold potato although it’s quite
large in size and it tastes amazing it is susceptible to blight late blight
which means that the potato plant will start having discolored leaves later in
the season and eventually die but the other potato variety that I’m growing in
the container did not have this problem so it really depends on what you’re
looking for I would still go for the best potato variety that I like to eat
and which produces decently sized potatoes but if you want less
maintenance then you should try growing some other potatoes and you can see some roots that are
coming into this raised bed and this is a common problem if you have trees
around your raised bed garden and that’s why you want to have your trees away
from any raised bed gardening that you’re doing if you have large trees
especially like pine trees or really large trees they will send out roots and
they will send out roots that go into your raised bed and get all the
nutrients from your vegetable garden and in my case I have some fruit trees very
close to this raised bed every time I harvest vegetables from this raised bed
I do make sure that I remove all the roots around it
and this is how our harvest looks like as you can see beautiful looking
potatoes and we are going to use them right away so we’ve washed them if you
want to store them you can leave the dirt on and they store better in that
case but we wanted to use these potatoes right away and we need a quick weigh-in
for all the potatoes that we had and as you can see a lot of good size potatoes
and on an average you can get about 4 to 5 potatoes per plant so as long as
you’re meeting that target like 3 to 4 at least then you have had a good
harvest because these are organically grown and they taste amazing
they are really fresh if you harvest these potatoes and try to cut them you
can see the freshness you can see that they’re crisp and very delicious
and this is how our harvest looks like and let’s do a final weigh-in and our
potatoes weigh in at 13 pounds which is an impressive harvest from just one 4
foot by 4 foot raised bed and the potatoes will store for about a few
weeks and I hope you like this Yukon Gold
potato harvest moving on to strawberries we were
growing our strawberries in this strawberry grow bag
and the benefit of using this grow bag was that the strawberries were a lot
cleaner when we harvested them as you can see not much of insect damage or any
dirt that can get into these strawberries so I really liked this
strawberry planting bag and I will provide a link to this grow bag in the
video description and the comments below and strawberries will usually produce in
the spring and the summer season and you can see here beautiful looking
strawberries and we were able to harvest strawberries multiple times during the
growing season this month these strawberries just kept producing
and the other benefit of using this grow bag is that you can grow multiple
varieties of strawberry in the same bag and which is why we actually have
different varieties each growing out from each pocket of this strawberry grow
bag and here you can see the strawberries a lot of strawberries that
we harvested so overall I was quite happy with the way the strawberry
planter bag produces helps you grow strawberries that produce
fruits that are quite clean quite nice and harvested fresh from your home
garden and finally Tomatoes we harvested our first tomato of the season and you
can see here beautiful looking tomato and our tomato plants have taken off
quite well and this was a first tomato harvest and we expect a lot more
tomatoes to grow in this tomato bed and now let’s look at the things for you
to do in your garden this month the first thing you can do is plant some
more summer vegetables we are planting some watermelon seeds here this is the
giant watermelon and I’ve usually noticed that the giant variety of seeds
are not very viable this is the giant pepper as well and
we’re going to see how these seeds germinate the viability of the seeds is
a big question especially for these giant seeds but we’ll see how it goes we
are sowing these seeds and this seed packet is from this year so hopefully we
should get a decent germination rate from these seeds now we are also sewing some pole beans
these pole beans will go on to our raised bed where it will grow on the
large easy trellis and you can see here the beans they look amazing these seeds
are quite nice we are going to be sewing these seeds in these seed starting cells
and they will usually germinate in a few days now I was talking about the blight
for the potatoes you can see that the leaf so the potatoes look like this when
they are struck with late blight and in this scenario you can see that the
leaves are quite severely affected now you should be watching out for this I
actually was a little delayed in removing these leaves but if you see
blight you should immediately remove these leaves The Container potatoes
don’t have this problem it was only the Yukon Gold potatoes if a growing in the
raised bed that had the blight but the solution to that is you just remove the
foliage just remove them and do not compost them just throw them
and you can also start transplanting your summer vegetables in this case we
transplanted our okra seedlings we are trying to grow a lot of okra this season
but the weather has been cooler than usual for a spring season which is quite
surprising actually because it’s now end of May and we are still having some
cooler days which is a little surprising for this time of the year but we are
still going to go ahead and plant our okra seedlings because they need some
time to settle down before the summer sets in and once the summer season is on
and when the weather is hot the okra plants thrive we just love to grow in
the warm or hot summer weather so we want to make sure that we get our plants
in before the summer starts and now let’s review some gardening products
this month we will be reviewing some interesting products from a company
called VermiSterra and they have two products that we will see today
one is the VermiSterra vermicompost and the other product is the VermiSterra
worm tea now a little bit about this company first VermiSterra is a
family-owned company located in thermal Southern California they have a huge
warm farm with red wigglers that they feed with organic matter like grass and
tree clippings their farm for over 20 years to learn the benefits of using
natural organic soil amendments and their products our OMRI certified they
take care to make sure their worms are fed only organic matter to create a
great quality vermicompost and warm tea the vermi compost and worm tea are
neutral pH so it won’t burn plants and is safe for seedlings as well so the
VermiSterra vermicompost is a very fine vermicompost and it comes in two grades
one is a standard grade that we are seeing here it’s a little coarse and can
be used very effectively on raised beds and in gardens in the soil and there is
also a premium grade which you can use for seed starting mixes or for indoor
plants now to use this vermicompost I usually prepare my raised beds with a
lot of organic matter so this is a good amendment to the
raised bed and as you can see here you can add this directly on the raised bed
and once you have added this on your raised bed all you do is just mix it
very well into the soil and vermicompost has a lot of beneficial
nutrients that will help your plants uptake all the nutrients pretty quickly
now you can also sprinkle some vermicompost along the plants that you
are already growing in your raised beds or in the ground and this will add a lot
of rich organic matter into your soil and all you do is just use a cultivator
to mix it in very well with the soil and this is also a good time to get rid of
any weeds that are there in your raised bed or the soil and the main benefit of
using the vermicompost or the warm tea is that it helps plants uptake nutrients
and this results in stronger plants that can fight off insects and diseases
and the next product we are looking at is the worm tea which comes in three
different sizes as you see here and it is basically tea that is prepared from
vermicompost and it also has a lot of good beneficial
nutrients that you can give to your plants
now this worm tea has to be mixed with water in order for you to apply this to
your garden and you can do a foliar application as well as drench your soil
with this worm tea this is a 1/3 cup measurement and what
I’m doing is I’m taking about 6 of this measurement 6 to 7 is good enough for a
2 gallon container and you can look at the instructions on the label to see how
much you need to mix with water in order to apply it to your plants
now once you’ve added the worm tea into your watering can
you can just fill it up with water and then what I usually do is just drench my
plants completely with this solution and what I’m doing here is I’m adding a lot
of beneficial nutrients beneficial bacteria into the soil and this will
really help the plants uptake a lot of nutrients now these okra plants were not doing too
great and I really wanted to revitalize these okra plants and the worm tea
really helps in such scenarios it’s very similar to seaweed where it really
invigorates the plants and helps them build a stronger system stronger stem
stronger leaves and this really helps with overall plant growth so it is
recommended that you use this product in your garden every week but I would say
even if you use it every 15 days or so it’s a good addition to your garden bed
or your soil you’re adding a lot of beneficial nutrients in the soil and this product looked to be a very
great quality it was well packaged and we will see the results soon we will
wait for a few weeks or a few months to see how our plants do but if you’re
doing organic gardening this is a great addition to your garden
and I also like supporting family-owned companies especially in Southern
California so if you want to buy their products
please do check out the links in the comments below and in the video
description below so there we have it folks that was our
episode on the California Garden for the month of April if you like this video do
give us a thumbs up if you have any comments leave them in
the comments box below we’ll see you again soon happy gardening

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