We started planting the garden in late October, 2011- lots of chillies (habanero, jalapeno, arbol, New Mex, serrano and others), various greens, tomatoes, Thai basil, lemongrass, dill, tea tree, sunflowers and a bunch of randoms like purslane and indigo. Some things never sprouted at all, some sprouted and died soon after, and some flourished. Holly’s green thumb, diligence and love of tiny sprouts meant that most things made it and by March 2012 we were starting to harvest tomatoes and chiles and few leaves of greens and herbs.
Battling the white grubs (beetle larvae) that like to eat sunflower roots, we learned about “Calcio-Boro” (calcium-boron), a natural fertilizer that these pests avoid, and the wonders of neem which grows abundantly in Nicaragua (more on neem in another post ; )
When we went to visit Rancho Santana, we did a great tour of their really nice organic garden with the local ladies who run it. We learned a bit more about how to use neem and how to make “torta de neem” …mmm, neem-cakes for use in the garden as a natural pesticide.
We are planning to apply what we learned about soil formation, composting, irrigation and natural pesticides to our garden in Northern Nica (we want chard that looks like that).