I was actually thinking my garden was a "late bloomer" because I kind of started later than usual this year (mid- March). I definitely should have gotten the seeds in earlier, my corn and sunflowers are way behind. The pepper sna eggplant are actually left over from last spring, believe it or not! I kept them alive all summer just by watering them, and we covered them a few times this winter with sheets (we had an *awesome* winter, IMO, with only a few overnight frosts.) I wasn't sure they eggplants'd come back because they looked a little brown for quite awhile, and the first fruits were yellow and squishy. But they're all coming around now. Pretty cool.
So, I've tried broccoli a couple of times with no luck. I mean, I get broccoli for a little while, and then the bugs take over. I'm wondering about this "insecticidal soap" you mentioned, seeing_stars. What is it and where do yo get it? My mom told me the Queen of Clean recommended a baking soda solution for afids, but I never tried it. I always end up pulling the plants because I don't want them spreading to anything else. I know it's more of a cold climate veggie so I'm trying to have the problem taken care of by the time I'm ready for autumn/winter planting.
I'm trying not to sound "braggy", but I'm super excited that I made veggie stir fry with fried rice tonight and all the veggies were from my garden!