Adventures on our Homestead

How Does Our Garden Grow– Update

I worked in the garden today for about seven hours and I thought you might like to see how it is coming along.

Here is one of the pictures from July.


Here is a similar shot from today.


Here were our tomatillos in July.


Here they are today.


I have a ton of winter squash growing.

Winter Luxury  Pumpkin                                                         Red Kuri

DSC_8859      DSC_8861

Galeux d Eyesines                                                      Rough Vif d’ Etampes

DSC_8864     DSC_8867

Sweet Meat                                                               Delicata

DSC_8869     DSC_8870

Queenlands Blue


It is quite a challenge to maneuver around everything that is growing when I need to check on something.

I didn’t take any new pictures of the cucumbers but boy are they growing. I finally got to the point that I had enough ready at the same time that I was able to can nine pints of sweet pickles. I have on-going refrigerator dill pickles that I keep adding to as well.

Today my goal for my time in the garden was to “trim” the tomatoes. What I did was carefully cut off the stems that only have leaves. Why do that? I have a lot of green tomatoes and I need them to be red soon. Here in Oregon I’m not guaranteed nice weather even at the end of August. Instead of sending energy and nutrients to leaves I want the plant to focus on ripening the existing fruit. It also puts a little stress on the plant (making it think it is dying) which forces it to ripen the existing fruit.

Here is one plant before I trimmed it.


Here it is after I trimmed it.


I know a farmer in Milwaukie who stops watering his tomatoes come August 1. Again, the plant begins to die and focuses on ripening the existing fruit. I believe it is the way God designed fruit bearing plants to survive through ripening that fruit which contains the seed. I didn’t have that option this year since I can’t stop watering the tomatoes and still water the rest of the garden.

My in-laws came over early in the afternoon and had a belated birthday celebration for my father-in-law. Great times and great food. What more can you ask for. A good night sleep after a very productive day is in my near future.

Good night,


PS: I think God is smiling. He knows I trust Him but worrying is such a hard habit to break. It is nice He doesn’t mind reminding me over and over again. He is patient with me.



  1. Bryn Gillem Bryn Gillem
    August 17, 2014    

    Hi Dear,
    I had to laugh out loud when I saw the way the squash had grown… so funny! If one of the boys goes missing, at last you will know where to start looking!!! Evidently a person can plant them farther apart (I wouldn’t know a thing about this!) but then said person might not be able to fit in all the wonderful varieties one might wish… :o) Next year=Bigger garden
    So… as per your request… I think the first is a Howden Pumpkin and it’s a new one for me- supposed to be great for carving. The second is Red Kuri. The third is Galeux d’eysines, one of my favorites even though it looks a little funny…Forth is another favorite, Rouge Vif d’Etampes or Cinderella pumpkin. My all time favorite Sweet Meat comes next… you will flip over how yummy this one is… perfect for pies or just roasting and eating with a spoon… no brown sugar needed! The next is Delicata and I think the last will end up being Queensland Blue but I can’t tell yet…
    It’s been so fun to see your progress and I’ve so enjoyed reading the blog. You are a natural born writer…Keep up the good work!!!

  2. ann in E. oregon ann in E. oregon
    August 18, 2014    

    Hi Karen ~ You certainly have a beautiful garden! It looks like (from the photos) that you live on the west side of Oregon. I live over here on the east side of the state. Gardening here is challenging, but very satisfying. After two years of soil preparation, I am planning to put in a big garden next year and am so inspired when I see pictures of successful gardens. Thanks for the great and inspirational pictures! { I found your blog through a comment you left at Mel’s. :-)) }

      August 18, 2014    

      Hi Ann,
      Yes we are on the west side of Oregon. We actually just moved here three months ago. Half of the garden I got started as seeds in the spring at our old house then planted when we got here. The other half of our garden two wonderful friends brought us as starts to plant. All the squash was gifted to us. In our old house I never would have had the space to grow winter squash. I just spent time finding recipes online for all of them .I’m very excited to cook with it. Thanks for checking out our blog. Karen

  3. Saundra Stebbing Saundra Stebbing
    August 29, 2014    

    Looks like the garden of Eden. Thanks for that great tip on cutting of the stems that only have leaves. I’ll be out in the garden doing that tomorrow. Fabulous stuff going on there, Mrs. Espalin.

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