Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Garden update (only one tomato blushing)

The garden is going gangbusters. Here are the details (and I mean details, you might want to skip this post if you're not into garden specifics).

Plant issues and diseases:
   Vine borers are the bane of my garden existence. I've had to perform surgery on every squash plant out there. I was doing awesome at catching the darn things while still small enough to easily find and remove right up until I went traveling for three days. Amazing how quickly a pest can take hold in that small amount of time. I think I've caught back up and only lost on summer squash plant, so not too bad.
   Powdery mildew - I was keeping ahead of this by using a mixture of 4 cups water to 1/2 tablespoon white vinegar to spray the plants each morning. Then, you guessed it, travel interrupt and BOOM! white leaves when I returned. I've cut off the infected leaves, burned them (strangely satisfying), and resumed my spray routine and everything looks good again. (It should be noted that the travel was well worth any catch up I've had to do - post coming soon).
   Green stink bugs - huh? Where did these things come from? We've never had them before so I have to assume the eggs arrived either in the new soil that we purchased this year or in the starts that we brought from up north. Either way, we've got them now. Fortunately they seem to prefer the sunflower plants to anything else in the garden so I'm using those as lures. Unfortunately my sunflowers are about 10 feet tall and the bugs like to munch at the very tops of the stalk. Still, better those than anything else in the garden.

   Yellow squash - so much squash! All of these plants are producing at rates that just amaze me. In fact, I'm getting so much that I'm harvesting young, small fruit so that they're more tender and the volume isn't so hard to use.
   Zucchini - One plant is producing at a nice steady pace. And it's actually put down squiggly white roots along the main stem which helps save it if I miss a borer. The other two zuke plants are barely producing despite looking gorgeous.
   Basil - crazy good. Will forever buy grocery store basil and plant it from now on.
   Dill - awesome dill crop. If only my cukes had produced...
   Cucumbers - meh. Turns out I had three different varieties: green pickling cukes and two types of white heirloom cucumbers. All taste great but aren't producing enough at one time to pickle easily. So I'm quick pickling what I have and will hope for a blow-out in September.
   Winter squash - I sure hope I can figure out how to use all this stuff. I have three massive Hubbard squash with more growing, and multiples of kobacho, buttercup, and butternut.
   Tomatoes - many, many green tomatoes. There is one showing the first blush of ripening. Hopefully this time next week I'll be awash in maters. Looks like I ended up with only beefsteaks, no paste tomatoes, no cherry tomatoes.
   Tomatillos - going crazy but nothing ripe yet. They're so cute in their little green jackets.
   Jalapeno - ate the first one yesterday and it was awesome. Great heat combined with flavor. Many more are forming. Fresh pico de gallo soon!
   Cauliflower - they are supposed to head up, right? Gorgeous leaves, nothing forming in the middle. I think caterpillars are retarding growth and my experiment with diatomaceous earth was unsuccessful. I've purchased caterpillar spray for next season.
   Kohlrabi - saved two from the voles.
   Sunflowers - gorgeous, huge, and starting to head.
   Cilantro - meh. Started seeds late hoping the plants would come in just in time for salsa season but they're barely growing. I have the worst time with cilantro!

The little kitchen garden is in desperate need of a redesign. The kale is doing well, as is the oregano, lemon thyme, and chives but everything else is sad. Not enough sun seems to be the issue. So I'll be moving landscape timbers and shifting it further west next year. I do have two volunteer cherry tomato plants that managed to set fruit but it's very green and I'm not sure they'll have time to ripen. I hope so. And I'll save some of the seed to actually plant up in the main garden next year. Obviously this is strong seed!

And now, since you've been so patient, here's a nice picture of Cooper enjoying the fire pit.

Wonder what she sees...


No comments:

Post a Comment