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Gardenhob is a drop
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It’s learning to be useful,
simple and in short.
It’s about my gardening,
and personal thoughts.
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Thank you.
Gardenhob

First blog postIMG_7776b1

 

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Featured post

My Malabar Spinach Pot

As you see my group of spinach were planted in the garden pot. They are starting to climb onto my homemade trellis. The spinach are beautiful with big dark green heart-shaped leaves and some young flower clusters.

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I placed the Malabar pot close to the nectarine tree. I hope that they can climb onto the tree if there is no more room on the trellis for them. I am still wondering whether they will affect the nectarine tree production or not. I try this to see what happens on both of them.

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I usually harvest the spinach by snipping their leaves and some branches in order to encourage them to produce more new branches and leaves. Have you eaten this kind of spinach? Check its nutrients in the USDA database and try it if you want. I hope you don’t hate it. Gardenhob will be silent until 4/21/2018.

How To Grow Malabar Spinach

You can plant it by following the instructions on the seed packet or guidelines attached to small pot of Malabar spinach seedlings being bought. If you buy a bag of Malabar spinach in a grocery like I did, you can do as follows.
1. Place some Malabar stems with small leaves or without leaves into a filled water cup.
2. Wait for roots formed from stems about 1 inch in length. It takes about more than two weeks.

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3. Transplant them into a garden pot. Press down the soil mixed with manure or compost around it firmly. You can plant them in a sunny area with good water drainage if you want.
4. Water it to keep soil moist until small new leaves come out. At that point you know it is alive. Continue watering for its growth.
5. Install a trellis for Malabar spinach to climb and grow.

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Harvest Malabar spinach.
You will know that the spinach is growing well when the Malabar main stem is bigger and longer with many young branches and leaves. At that time, you can harvest by snipping the tender stems and leaves. You should harvest it often before it flowers for the better flavor.

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Why I Grow Malabar Spinach

Do you want a natural purple? if yes, you can try planting Malabar spinach or rau mồng tơi in Vietnamese to get the juice of Malabar tiny fruits that has natural purple.

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For me, I want to grow it because I love the Malabar spinach shrimp soup. My wife sometimes makes this dish, which I always enjoy it.

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To Harvest Luffa

I almost check my luffa plant every day in summer to make sure its fruits are young enough for food. I harvest them when they are still heavy, young and green about two weeks after fruit forming.

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I let one fruit get mature this time because I wanted to make luffa sponges. The fruit became light and turned brown. I removed its skin and got its seeds.

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My luffa plant left my garden in the last week of October last year. Too early? Sad!

 

 

How To Grow Luffa From Seedlings

Luffa is not difficult to grow. I did not have luffa seeds, so I bought a young luffa plant in a small pot in last spring without planting guidelines.

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I planted it in my garden bed. You can plant by your own way, or here are some tips:
1. Make a hole a little bigger than the young plant pot. Loosen the plant pot and remove the luffa plant.
2. Install it into the hole. Fill in soil mixed with manure and press down the mix around it firmly.
3. Water to keep soil consistently moist for its growth. Install a trellis for it to climb.

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After about 4 months, you will have a wonderful green luffa vine bearing beautiful yellow flowers and fruits at the same time. There are male and female flowers on the luffa vine. Both are yellow but the female one is single and male is in cluster. Butterflies, bees, or winds will help pollinate female flowers for fruits. You can also help by taking the center part of the male flower and touching it to the center part of female flower.

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What Is Luffa?

Luffa is a fruit of a vine with green leaves and beautiful yellow flowers. Luffa plant is often grown for natural luffa sponges and young fruits. Young fruits are used in many kinds of Vietnamese dishes such as luffa shrimp soup or canh tôm mướp hương in Vietnamese, luffa pork soup, stir-fried luffa or luffa and Malabar spinach mixed with shrimp soup, and so on. But my favorite soup is shrimp luffa soup.

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Spring Comes In My Tiny Garden(contd)

Spring is coming.
All of the things happened Sunday morning have caught both my eyes and my mind. I suddenly realized that the weather was changing too. They were the signs of the arrival of the spring. I pressed the button of my smartwatch on my left hand to check the date. It was March 4. So, spring is just around the corner.
I am living in the Northern hemisphere. The March equinox has not come yet. I’ve learned that the March equinox means the beginning of the spring which is around March 20. So, there are about two more weeks before the spring comes to us.
I was planning a lot of things to do in my small garden around my house during this enjoyable spring season. I am going to reorganize my tiny garden bed and grow some plants and veggies. I am also going to take some photos of crocus in my backyard before they are gone.

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I posted this last part of ‘spring comes in my tiny garden’ today (3/21/18). It’s the second day of the spring. So the spring is already here!

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Spring Comes In My Tiny Garden (contd)

Spring flowers
I took my cup of coffee to place it on the kitchen table. I mixed ‘half and half’ milk into my coffee and began enjoying this hot coffee on my early Sunday morning. While sipping my coffee, through the patio door, I could see my ‘bonsai’ peach bearing beautiful white, pink, and red flowers. The bonsai peach is the small peach I grow it for flowers only. Its branches that were decorated with full flowers and buds, had not many young leaves.

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My ornamental Mickey mouse plant was also blooming.

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My persimmon tree was producing buds.

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A blue bird unexpectedly landed on the fence post. I stepped closer to the patio door to get a better look at the blue bird, but it flew away. I wish I could have captured her picture in this beautiful morning, but I missed the chance.

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Spring Comes In My Tiny Garden

Birds and spring leaves.
Sunday morning, I woke up late. I heard birds were chirping in my backyard. I guessed that they were either on my golden delicious apple or on my nectarine tree. As usual, I walked to my Keurig coffee maker and made my morning cup of coffee.

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While waiting for the Keurig to alert me that my brew was ready, through the kitchen window, I could see my pomegranate tree’s branches peppered with plenty of beautiful small young leaves. They had many colors on them such as pale green, orange yellow, and dark green.

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I came back to the Keurig. Two bright blue light buttons were on. I put the handle down to close it and the two blue light buttons began blinking. I chose less coffee and pressed the left button. The coffee started filling into my cup. After no more coffee drops fell into the cup, I turned the coffee maker off.

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