Seaview June Garden Journal Update - New Projects and Things Are Growing Fast! - Seaview, Lower Puna, Far East Big Island, Hawai'i - June 7, 2022
Warm greetings all! 🙏 💚
It's June 7th, and things have been hopping in the garden at The Sanctuary of The Blue Dragon, here in Seaview, Lower Puna, far East Big Island of Hawai'i, both in plant growth and new projects. I wanted to give y'all a tour of some of the notable fantastic growth and development of several of the plants in the garden, and of the newer projects on which I've been working.
I extended the forest border bed a good bit. This expansion took a lot of work, over multiple days. I weeded, dug a trench, removed an astonishing number of lava rocks that were mixed in with the soil from the trench, and built a lava rock wall with the stones that I removed.
I added lots of organic waste, such as dead logs and branches, chopped coconuts, bones, egg shells, and kitchen waste, to the bottom of the trench, to slowly breakdown and release nutrients over time.
Once the wall was built and the organic waste added to the bottom, it was time to add soil. Luckily there was a long pile of soil next to the new bed from previous big machinery work, so I used that, which served two purposes. One, I leveled the ground in front of the new bed, and two, it gave me lots of soil to add to the new bed, so I had much less soil to haul in with a wheelbarrow.
When the soil from the long pile in front of the new beds was added, I added six full wheelbarrows of 10-year-aged macadamia nut soil mixed with cinder.
After the soil was good, I added a few full wheelbarrows of mixed wood mulch. At this point the bed was ready for planting! Yay!
The day after I finished this bed I planted a good array of useful plants in it.
A very vigorous white-fruited strawberry that does very well in our tropical climate. If it's happy, it will spread very quickly indeed. I can't wait!
I plant Cuban cilantro, or culantro, everywhere I can, as it is so incredibly useful, both for food preparation and medicinally. It's an important component of my medicinal tea blends.
Hawaiian hot peppers. This is a wonderful locally adapted hot pepper variety that can live for many years, and can grow more than six feet tall. I can never have enough of them!
I am also in love with Krishna tulsi, and plant it everywhere too! In this bed I planted two different clones of Krishna tulsi, both for our own use in medicinal teas, and to trade or sell.
The view of both the new part of the forest border bed (visible in the far left) and the older section that I completed a few months ago.
A closer view of the older section of the bed on the right. Two white mulberry trees can be seen in front of the wall, along with a young papaya on the far right.
I planted two varieties of sweet peppers in this bed, many of which are growing really well now. The seedlings of what looks like a new basil species that spontaneously appeared in the garden in two places, can also be seen amoung the pepper plants. I've been potting them up, and planting them in more appropriate conditions, to allow them to develop fully, so that both identify them and make use of them.
The thimbleberry that I planted a few months ago is also growing very well. It's sending up new stems now, and has been producing fruit pretty much since I planted it. It will form a nice thicket here, with lots of yummy fruit for all! It's a raspberry, so it's also medicinal!
The Vana tulsi that I planted on the left side of this bed, near the beginning of the new bed, is exploding with growth. I am so happy and excited for this, as Vana tusli is exceedingly beneficial medicinally, and it's also an important component of my medicinal tea blends. This is another species that I want to plant everywhere! It will grow over ten feet tall when fully developed.
This Vana tulsi was moved a few weeks ago, as it didn't like the conditions in its previous spot. That was a first for me with this plant, as I'd previously never seen it not do well. In any case, it's been doing much better since I moved it, with vigorous new growth finally appearing. Yay!
One of the new projects on which I'm work ing now is weeding, leveling, adding cinder and mulch to the area to, under, and around this noni tree. At this point I'm still leveling it with soil from one of the pond excavations. Soon I'll create a path to it, and a comfy spot under it to sit. It will be a great place to contemplate and meditate. There is an Ohia tree in front of it and behind it, around which I'm also clearing. I can't wait until I get this area done! Inspired work! Noni is also an exceedingly medicinal species, which we use often (both the leaves and the fruit.
This is a patch of very happy mullein plants thsat sprang up right at the entrance to the community event building. Mullein is another wonderfully medicinal species, which has an astoundingly wide climactic adaptability, growing both here in our very tropical location and up in the much colder areas, way up to the limit of plant growth on Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa.
The bed of tropical milkweed and ramgoat dashalong that I planted months ago is also doing quite well, with wonderful growth and lots of flowers on both species. One area of challenge with the tropical milkweed is that with so few plants, the monarch butterfly caterpillars have been completely defoliating them. I've made it a habit to gently collect the caterpillars every few days, to transfer them to a far more robust giant milkweed, that is far more able to tolerate so much caterpillar munching. The milkweed has red and yellow flowers, and the ramgoat dashalong has larger yellow flowers (sadly most of them had already started to close for the evening when I took theese photos). A few defoliated milkweed can alo be seen. Thankfully they usuaally reboubd pretty quickly. When I propagate and plant more of them this won't be such an issue.
The round mound bed has some plants doing very well, as well as a few that don't seem to like it in this location much. The kale, arugula, and green onions are thriving, while the sweet peppers and two kinds of parsley have declined quite a bit. The spineless amaranth that I planted on the side has grown huge, and is providing lots of nutritious greens. The large Hawaiian hot pepper plant that I transplanted here has lots of new growth, and will both look better and begin producing lots of hot peppers soon.
The bed of Krishna tulsi and comfrey under an Ohia tree is looking great. Both species have grown very well indeed. We actually just did a full harvest of our Krishna tulsi to sell or trade. This shot is a few days after harvesting. Well likely do full harvests every few weeks. Both species are very important ingredients in my medicinal teas.
These are two other Krishna tulsi plants located in another section of the garden. The clone on the right is notably more purple, with wider leaves. I'll be propagating a lot that one! This photo is also a few days after our full harvest.
We recently created a lava rock wall around this bed, which has become our herb garden, to protect it from wild pigs which had been making a mess of the garden in various places. Many of the plants here have utterly exploded with growth, with several forming large mats. We stuck stems of green ti plants around the perimeter, as the bunnies, which live in their bunny pen near this garden, love green ti leaves. They don't look great now, but they root and send out new growth fast.
We also created another mini planting bed, surrounded by lava rocks, and right next to the walled herb garden, for the bunnies as well. We planted it with collards and green ti.
These are a few shots from the walled heb garden. This is orange mint. It has spread quite extensively, which makes me very happy!
Purslane, also looking great.
A newly planted peppermint plant can be seen behind one of the three vervain species that I've collected and planted. Some of the Pink-flowered tobacco have grown immensely, others not so much. As can be seen in this shot, the one in the left is much larger than the small one on the right.
This shot has a large tobacco leaf to the upper left, another newly planted vervain species under the tobacco leaf, a newly planted spearmint plant in front of that. One of the new basil species which spontaneously appeared elsewhere in the garden, and which I transplanted here, can be seen right behind another basil species which grows wild here. I'm still working on identifying both. Purslane can be seen off to the right.
A newly planted chocolate mint, between two well-developed tobacco plants.
The mugwort has developed a lot in a very short time, so much so that we can now harvest from it. Woot!
This is a pretty shot of some mushrooms popping up amidst some very happy gotu kola.
In another bed, the pineapple sage is also growing like crazy, and expanding quite a lot. It's also beginning to get its lovely bright red flowers. This is another wonderfully medicinal species that we use in teas.
The young patchouli plants that I put in this shadier bed are putting on some nice growth. Patchouli is a very useful medicinal species that is also important in my tea blend. I plant it everywhere too!
I planted the patchouli plants in this bed quite a bit before the other bed, and they are also showing some excellent growth! Super yay! The Persian shield (big purple and silver leaves, is also growing really well now.
One of my two surviving tea plants can be seen in the foreground of this shot, surrounded by sticks. I had to move them due to unsuitable conditions. I had three, but one died. Thankfully this one is also sending out excellent new growth!
My second surviving tea plant is also recovering well, very thankfully.
The Brazilian cherry that I planted a few weeks ago is also sending out lots of new, beautiful growth!
This is one of a few Moringa trees on the property. Moringa is super nutrient-dense, and a wonderful food plant to have around. I have to heavily prune this one so it doesn't get too tall. The cut stems can be planted, and the leaves can be frozen or dried, for future use.
I gave this taro bed a little love. I weeded it, added more soil, cinder, and mulch. I'll add a lava rock border soon.
We have several racks of bananas maturing now. We harvested one yesterday, and chopped up the stem on which it was growing, which will be used in new planting beds as organic material to release nutrients over time.
The rack of bananas that we harvested. Yummy little devils!
We also have lots of papayas to eat lately!
*Me harvesting a papaya!
Would you like a papaya? Me, in the garden, naked as always (except for the hat! The sun can be intense on my bald head!)!
That brings me to the end of this June Garden Journal Update! Thank you all for joining me on the tour! Until next time!
Thank you all so much for allowing me to share more of the beauty and magic from my life and my world with you, and for your continuous appreciation and support! I am deeply grateful! 🙏 💚
Image created by @doze.