Jul 2, 2009

Around the Garden

Well the weather has finally started co-operating a bit. There have been a few days were there has been more sun than clouds, and the temperature has gotten up above °70 on those days too, and that is a big plus.
In the big garden the tomatoes are finally flowering and a few even have little baby tomatoes growing.I have also noticed a bit of blossom drop. This is a first for me, and seeing that the weather has not been very hot, I have no clue what is doing it. Although in all reality I have never watched as closely as I am watching this year so this may be a normal occurrence in the garden. All in all, I have said to myself many times this year that if I even harvest 1 tomato per plant I will be thankful. I attribute this general less than hopeful feeling to how the weather and the killer aphids have wrecked havoc on the plants. I really hope that everything plays catch up over the next handful of days and I can look forward to canning up dozens of jars of sauce....but I am not holding my breath.
Also coming along in the big garden are the zucchini. I planted a variety called Parthenon for the third time this year, and for the third time it looks like I will be harvesting zucchini. Now this may sound strange to some, but before I found this particular variety I could not for the life of me get zukes to do their thing. Most people have to dress in black and creep under the cover of darkness leaving their zukes all around the neighborhood, like a reverse cat burglar. But not me. Nope. I am the scourge of anything summer squash. Not with Parthenon though!

Around the rest of the gardening yard, I have been starting to pick my Black Raspberries in earnest. We eat about half of a cereal bowlful in the morning and then I freeze around the same amount for jamming in the Fall. The berries will be coming in full force by the beginning of next week, then I may have to make some Raspberry shortcake...yum! I am thinking that this is going to be the year I have to aggressively prune back my berry patch...it is getting too tall and mighty rowdy. Can't have a rowdy bunch of berries now can we.

The wild blueberries are bluing up, but I am having a hard time beating the birds to them. The regular blueberries look as if they want to start bluing up but just cant make up their minds.

The Pole Beans are still trying to overcome the damage made to them by the mystery bug. The Yardlong beans are just waiting patiently for hot Summer weather to finally grace us with its presence. Also, I have this runner bean that is absolutely covered in gorgeous bright red flowers, and growing like nobodies business. It is a variety called 'Insuks Wang Kong' Runner Bean. I received this bean from a very generous gentleman whose wife the bean is named for. I wasn't going to plant it this season, but I took a shot as I have heard such good things about it, and man am I glad I did. Now I cant wait to eat them .I will get a picture of them up soon.

The corn is starting to actually grow....it hasn't reached knee height yet, but it's growing. The Tomatillos are covered in blossoms, as are the extremely stunted cucumbers. I even spied a few baby cukes, that makes me extraordinarily happy. I don't think I will have enough to pickle, but seeing as there are still about a dozen jars of dills left from last year I think a year off from pickling might not be a problem. The Edamame have had a tough go of it because of squirrels. I had to replant the seeds three times already, and now they are finally taking off ...but Arghh (picture me ripping out my hair) I have had enough of them darned squirrels this year. The watermelon flopped...too cold for them this Spring(must make note to start them inside next season), and the three sad tiny cantaloupe seedlings are down to one sad 4 inch tall seedling...squirrels again ARGHH (Again note for inside start)

The peppers and Eggplants are in various states of growth. The Poblanos are big and flowering. The sweet cherries are next in line with a batch of nice buds. The Cubanelles and Bananas are still trying to catch up, and the Habeneros and Lemon Drops are waiting on the hot weather along with the yardlong beans. Eggplant has only done well for me once, but I keep trying anyways. This is not looking to be a good eggplant year for me.

In the pumpkin patch , the winter squash vines are small but thriving, and the area where there would have been Cinderella pumpkins now has stunted Brussels Sprouts. To my surprise I do have one pumpkin growing big and strong, and as of this morning I believe it is sporting a newly pollinated pumpkin. Of course I have no clue how the plant got where it is. Oddly enough it is growing in my horseradish patch. I didn't amend that soil this year , or last year either, so maybe a dreaded squirrel planted that seed....maybe....and maybe that is why I pull my hair out but still tolerate those furry menaces. But they had better stop eating my baby apples.

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