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A lazy June garden update

Been a while since my last post!!

I’ve managed to find a postdoc position that I love (using “systems immunology” approaches to research the role of CD4+ T cells in Lupus disease pathology), am getting to some teaching, and we have an adorable new kitten who has become Inka’s BFF.  The commute to my new job is shorter- bikeable, even!- so I can spend more time at home with the the hubster and critters, but still, it’s hard to keep up with the garden and all the projects I would love to do.

The garden is coming along, at times very slowly.  The veggie garden is entering its second year and we are losing the battle to massive quantities of uber-vigorous weeds and slugs. I learned the other day that many of the weeds probably came from the garden mulch we brought in- from now on I’ll stick to buying Cedar Grove compost, which is largely weed-free and helps close the city waste loop.  And the slugs…  hilariously, some nocturnal critter keeps slurping up the contents of my slug traps- beer-soaked slugs… like vodka soaked gummy bears at a college party?  We are excited to get ducks next spring- I’m confident they’ll solve the slug problem within an hour.

Our permaculture garden is largely now in place (David says, “We have a permaculture garden?”).  By that I mean we have planted most of the perennial fruit trees, bushes, and vines that will mature into our low-maintenance permanent garden:

–  Three apples, one of which is a grafted combination tree
–  Two plums – one Asian combo and one European combo
–  Two pears – one Asian combo and one European combo
–  A combination peach with four varieties that are supposed to do alright in Seattle… we’ll see
–  A mulberry tree for our future ducks
–  A male and a female kiwi vine
–  Three hops vines, which will provide shade for our BBQ area, and which my brother will use in his delicious home brew
–  Several varieties of currant and gooseberry
–  Many kinnikinnick and lingonberry bushes
–  And the two figs, table grape, raspberries, blueberries, rhubarb, and blackberry crosses we planted last year are doing well.  –  The asparagus is doing ok…

In our annual veggie garden this year we have:

–  Overwintered kale, leeks, and garlic.  The overwintered cabbage froze to death, and the parsnips became woody.
–  Spring peas and radishes got mowed down by the slugs.  The beets might make it.   Looking forward to those ducks!
–  Just transplanted the summer veggies: Tomatoes, tomatillos, peppers, squash and cukes, basil, corn, runner beans.
–  In late July, I’ll plant the fall and overwintering crops: more kale, broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts and “kalettes“- a brussels sprout/kale cross that I’m very excited about, carrots, beets, radish, more leeks and garlic.

This morning I moseyed around the garden with my morning tea, scarfed a few ripe berries, and snapped a few photos:

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