Let’s look at all the harvests we made this October, a tour of the California Garden, a very cool gardening product and a whole lot more!
Let’s begin with the harvest we made this month.
Beginning with the banana bud harvest! Once the bananas appear on your banana plant, the bud will be at the bottom and after you harvest it, the bananas will keep growing. You can eat the bud or the flowers inside. You can also look up a lot of good recipes online and this is actually an extremely delicious thing to eat.
Moving on to green beans, we had our bean plants growing along the trellis between our raised beds. The pole beans took up more space but they also yielded a lot more beans compared to bush beans. We also had bush bean plants growing in containers and they provided us with a few beans for our harvest. Luckily, we did get a few extra warm days in October so the bean plants grew better than expected and contributed to an amazing harvest.
Next is bitter gourd or bitter melon. Our bitter melons were growing on a trellis between our raised beds and we got a lot of bitter melons or bitter gourds from just a single plant. We also had bitter gourds growing in a container. Overall,there were a lot of beautiful looking bitter gourds or bitter melons that we harvested.
Bottle gourds were also at the end of their season and we had one huge bottle gourd to harvest. I kept it to save seeds so I can use this for planting in subsequent years.
Then, there was sweet corn. Our corn kernels looked amazing and this was a sign that the corn plant had grown well and was well pollinated. Homegrown sweet corn is absolutely delicious and we had about six plants, each producing about two or three cobs.
Moving on to cucumbers! This is our second year growing the Japanese cucumbers, which are absolutely scrumptious. They may not look as big as some of the other cucumber varieties but they are still a pleasure to grow. Japanese cucumbers have very soft seeds from the inside and are very crunchy and delicious to eat. You can eat these cucumbers raw or you can even juice them, there are a lot of uses. These cucumbers are also very productive as we could continuously harvest this vegetable.
Eggplants! We grew the Indian white or Thai white eggplants in our raised bed and got quite a few eggplants throughout the month. We harvested beautiful eggplants and were back in just a few days to harvest more. This plant was still growing strong even during the cooler months which was quite surprising but it was also reaching the end of its season.
Next is guavas. We had a guava tree that was growing in the corner of our home and started producing these beautiful fruits. I like to harvest these when they are a little bit less ripe so that you can get the full flavor of these guavas. The tropical white guavas are actually very crispy, very delicious and mildly sweet so they are an excellent variety of guava to grow. The white ones are unlike the Mexican guava as it has soft seeds and a very nice, mildly sweet taste to it. It does get more sweet when it ripens more but this is the stage that I love to eat these guavas.
Hyacinth beans; This month was the month where the hyacinth bean plant was extremely productive. The hyacinth beans came out absolutely nice looking and were very healthy beans. Remember that hyacinth beans must be cooked before eating, do not eat them raw. The hyacinth bean plant is one of our favorites and one of our staple foods so we keep growing this in our home garden every year. Also for the most part, this is a perennial plant that will keep growing throughout the winter and into the next season.
Moving on to lettuce. We were growing the green leaf lettuce in a whiskey barrel container, each containing six plants. We got very nice looking leaves full of water, vitamins, and minerals which makes them great for juicing. You can also eat them raw. I have started growing more leafy greens in my garden just because we love to juice them.
My goal is to grow more greens this year, bringing us to our next plant, longevity spinach. This is a spinach variety that is a perennial spinach variety and it’s extremely healthy and extremely nutrient dense. It also has a lot of vitamins and minerals and is once again a great candidate for juicing because it has thick stems and leaves that can be easily juiced. Lastly, it has a good pleasing taste so if you’re looking to grow spinach, the longevity spinach is a great option.
Malabar spinach is yet another spinach variety that’s even more loaded with water and nutrients. They produce really large leaves but are unfortunately bad for juicing. It’s hard to describe but once you start eating malabar spinach you will realize that this spinach has a very unique flavor. But you can find many other recipes to use this spinach in.
Next is mango, my favorite harvest for the month. Our mango tree only produced one mango this year but it had produced six last year due to a phenomenon called alternate bearing. Alternate bearing is where it produces every other year. Cutting open the mango, it had absolutely no fiber and just a lot of good sweet flesh that’s extremely delicious. This was a very sweet mango and I’m really happy to be growing this mango variety.
I’m really happy to be growing moringa pods this year, also called drumsticks. They are a superfood that are the pods that grow on the moringa plant. The moringa leaves, as well as the pods, are extremely loaded with nutrients and it was a little difficult to harvest these pods but the tree grew large and beautifully. I’m really happy to be finally harvesting these pods from the tree and every few days we were coming and harvesting a few fresh pods. So it took about two years for the tree to settle down and start producing moringa, and the trees were actually growing in a container until they were transferred into the ground where they should be as the moringa is a huge tree. With moringa pods, you can boil them with lentils and use them in a dish called sambar!
Mustard spinach is next. This is one interesting vegetable variety as it is a spinach with the flavor of mustard. It’s quite unique and most of the time, people make a dish called sarson ka saag which you can find recipes for online.
Moving on to okras, which we harvested a lot of from our GreenStalk planter. This is nearing the end of the season but we were happy to harvest a few okras from our GreenStalk leaf planter.
Lastly, we have some tomatoes. We were growing our San Marzano tomato in this container and the tomatoes started ripening after quite some time. We still had a few tomatoes growing on this plant so we let the plant grow for a few more weeks and kept harvesting the tomatoes while they were producing. All in all, not a huge harvest for tomatoes but in October, i can’t really complain. These are amazing tomatoes for the month.
Now let’s take a tour of the garden, beginning with the raised beds. In our first bed, we have these onion sets that we planted and all of them have now germinated. Last month, you saw that there was nothing on this bed but now it’s a nice lush green bed. We also have some radish that we sowed in the center and all of them have sprouted and are now growing well. We also have some bean plants. Whole beans towards the trellis and the pole bean plant mentioned in the harvest section. We also planted some bush beans and have a couple of tomato plants.
In the next raised bed, we just sowed some radish seeds. There are two varieties of radish and they have both germinated. We also sowed some carrot seeds. There are also two tomato plants towards the trellis, a few okra plants and even some royal purple radish.
On the next raised bed, we have all our brassicas: cauliflower, cabbage and broccoli. All these plants are growing inside this protective raised bed to keep the insects out. It’s been doing a good job so far. And on the next raised bed, we just planted some kale to continue our efforts in planting greens for juicing. As well as eggplant, the black moon eggplant which is looking good but not being productive. On the last raised bed, we again sowed some radish seeds. This bed has some insect damage so these plants are not growing that well so i’ll have to look into fixing that but we just sowed some spinach seeds here as well. We also have some radish growing here in two rows, the red acre cabbage and the ivy gourd plants on the back.
Let’s now move on to containers. In the first container, we have our cauliflower plants and although protected, it does have some insect damage. We also have our Japanese cucumber plant and our Surajmukhi chili plant. This is also where our lablab bean plant is grown, and it is a really huge plant, like a monster.
We have radish growing in another whiskey barrel container and a determinate Roma tomato plant. We also have our taro root plants and our lettuce as well. Some more plants in this and the next container include our sunchokes plant,a galois medicinal plant, mint, guavas, one turmeric plant and a mustard spinach plant. Some more plants are our San Marzano tomato, our bunching green onions, more radish seeds, our black moon eggplant, a new set of hyacinth beans, our bitter gourd, another bush tomato plant, more brassicas, our Bearss lime tree, our curry leaf plant, a pineapple guava tree and a java plum tree.
On the other side, we have our longevity spinach which has now started growing much better. We have our pigeon pea plant that’s also taken off quite well, and our ivy gourd plant. Moving on to our GreenStalk leaf planter, we have some okra from the previous season, some cilantro, and onions, which we have set up with one onion set per pocket of the container.
In some other containers, we have turmeric along the beginning of the raised beds, we have strawberries, and we have mint in the next one. We also have a fruit tree and next to it, a black moon eggplant is growing. Then we have a couple of okra plants, and recently planted onions and kohlrabi.
REVIEW (GreenStalk Spinner)
In the gardening products section of today’s video, we will see how to solve a common problem: water collecting on the base of your containers.
This is a sponsored review of the GreenStalk spinner and this is a very useful product if you’re growing your plants in containers. I’ll explain to you why I think this is a good product. Although this is a sponsored review, these are my honest opinions. This American company values their employees and is an overall good company to associate with if you’re planning to buy products.
The spinner feels really solid, and the idea is to not only give your plants or your containers some support at the bottom but also to let you spin them around. The most useful thing is the drain pipe because all the water in the base will not drain on your pavers, but it will drain through this drain pipe. It fits our whiskey barrel-sized container very comfortably speaking to its versatility.
It’s a very clever design and a product that I would highly recommend in fact I might use a lot more of this product for my containers so if you’re planning to buy this product head over to greenstalkgarden.com and remember to use coupon code “cag” to get $10 off your order and if you have a lot of containers you will love this product
Watch our episode California Gardening October 2021 Harvests, Garden Tour, Gardening Tips, GreenStalk Spinner Review on California Gardening