August is practically over and that means we are nearly in the final month of the garden season. This is the month when the true potential of the garden can be seen, as the plants will reach maturity and even begin to produce a bit. This month has been a struggle for the garden. We’ve had a mix of cool and hot weather, along with bought of dry weather and days upon days of heavy rain. Pests have been a major issue in the garden this month as well, something I don’t normally see until September as things wind down. Despite all this, I am still somewhat happy with how the August 2022 garden has come along. It may not be perfect, but the plants are doing their best with the conditions they have been given.
August 2022 garden
The main garden
This large garden space is where most of my vegetables grow. Initially, things looked pretty good here. However, over the course of the month, I’ve noticed a lot of plants have either stopped growing or have been ravaged by pests. This is not what I usually see in August but since every year is different, I’m simply chalking it all up to a bad growing year.
The green beans have been doing alright. The plants were slow to get going but finally reached a good size. They are also putting on a decent amount of beans. However, they have been hit early with pest damage, which normally wouldn’t happen until September. Nearly an entire row of plants has been eaten by something, though I have yet to see what pest is destroying them. I will begin harvesting them in the next few days and hopefully, I can get a decent harvest from them before they are completely killed off by pests.
The tomatoes are struggling a bit. Though we started off with warm weather this spring, we quickly reverted back to our usual cooler temps for most of August. While the plants do have tomatoes on them, they are quite small and many have not put on any flowers or fruit. A number of the fruits also began to rot before they put their size on, likely thanks to having several cooler nights. I will say the Tiny Tim variety has been doing well. Most of those plants have so many tomatoes on them that you can barely see the plant. I have been checking the tomatoes daily and will be pulling off anything that is ripe or close to it in the coming weeks.
As far as the zucchini and peppers go, they are a loss this year. The peppers never grew once they were planted into the raised beds. While the zucchini plants grew some, over half of them were wiped out by pests and those that survived have been stunted and haven’t put on many flowers. In fact, most of the remaining plants are starting to die off. I did get one zucchini from them and there is one small one forming now, so with luck, I will get a second zucchini before the season is over.
The sunflowers have been doing well. I initially didn’t think they would flower well, as they seemed to be lagging behind on growth. But this month they really took off and nearly all of them have produced at least one flower head. Despite growing a variety of red sunflowers, so far, only one of the plants has produced a red flower. The others have produced yellow or orange flowers. While they all look amazing, I have a special love for that single red sunflower. The bees have really been enjoying these flowers as well, so I plan to grow them again next year.
The remainder of the garden, which is herbs and flowers is doing alright. Much like most of the other plants, they are stunted and aren’t really producing like they normally do. However, I’m holding out hope that they will get a burst of growth in the coming final weeks of the growing season.
The new garden
This garden has done okay. I hadn’t expected it to flourish because it is a first-year garden but all things considered it has done well. The brassica plants have grown quite a bit this month and many of the broccoli plants started to form heads. Unfortunately, shortly after they started to put their heads on we ended up having two weeks of hot weather. This caused the broccoli to bolt, turning the heads into flowers before we could harvest them. It’s not a complete loss, as the rabbit can still eat the leaves and flowers of these plants.
The cabbage plants have not done much since they were planted. They did put on some size but it’s clear now that we won’t get any cabbage this year. The Brussel sprouts, while full of leaves show no signs of producing sprouts. Even the kale remains stunted.
The lettuce is finally starting to grow well. It had been stunted all summer long but is finally getting some good size to it. I’ve been harvesting the lettuce regularly this month. However, the Swiss chard and spinach have been a huge disappointment. Most of it never sprouted and what did come up never grew beyond a minuscule plant. The radishes are also starting to grow, though I’m not sure they will get to a good size before I am forced to harvest them.
The front garden
The chocolate mint is still going strong. In fact, the plant is a good 2 feet tall and takes up about half of the front garden. I’m hoping that next year it will spread throughout the entire area. The mint is also starting to flower.
What’s next for the garden
As you can see, I still need to add gravel to the paths in the new garden. I had hoped to finish that in August but never got around to it.
I have decided to hold off on adding a fence to the new garden. While it’s still in the plans, I don’t want to rush into putting one up. I will take my time to decide on the best fence for this area and then I will put it up.
I need to get back into the habit of regular weeding again. I do little spurts of weeding but never enough to get it all done.
Harvest time is just around the corner. The beans are near ready for their first picking. Some herbs can also be harvested along with any ripe tomatoes. Honestly, I think the harvest overall this year will be lackluster given the state of most of the garden.
I hope you enjoyed my August 2022 garden update. What is growing in your garden this month?