Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Garden Tour - August 6, 2018

Remember last year, when over a dozen cucumber plants decided to appear along the side of my garden?  I wound up bringing over 40 pounds of overripe cucumbers to a sanctuary.  That doesn't count the ten plus quarts of cucumbers I picked.

Well, this year, I only had one cucumber plant survive.  None grew outside of the garden.  So far only three, oddly shaped, small cucumbers grew this year.  But instead of an over-abundance of cucumbers, I wound up with dozens of cherry tomato plants.  

Yes, those are all cherry tomatoes.  Here's another angle.

But wait!  There's more!

About a fifth of the garden that exists inside the fence is also cherry tomatoes!  But there's more!

There's more growing along and through the slats of my deck!  Geez Louise...

Don't get me wrong.  I do like cherry tomatoes.  I hate picking them.  And now I have a million pounds of them to pick.  I have no clue how they took over the yard.  And it seems bizarre that none of the cucumber plants returned.  My garden grows how it wants.  I'm just here to do the weeding.

Here is the one lone cucumber plant.

Last year this time, I also had a slew of ripe tomatoes.  This year, they're only turning red now.  

I don't remember if these are cantaloupe or watermelon.  I'll find out eventually. 

I planted at least 12 bean seeds, and only one grew.

We already ate quite a bit of the early sprouting broccoli, but now it looks like it's actually growing heads of broccoli.  The rest of my brassicas were eaten by a teeny tiny bunny I've named Cornelius.  He doesn't appear to be growing at all.  He easily squeezes into the garden.  He's cute, but apparently also a jerk.  It is what it is, he needs to eat too I guess.

I use a spray of a half gallon of water, two tablespoons of Super Clean Neem Oil, two tablespoons of Dr. Bronner's Organic Sal Suds Liquid Cleaner and 10 drops of Essential Oils (I mix clove, rosemary, orange, and peppermint) to combat the whitefly problem.  It's been the only thing that works for me.  I've included affiliate links for the specific brands I use.

The peppers are starting to flower.  I grew a mix of hot peppers and bell peppers.  Don't ask me what kind of which plant is which.  I like to be surprised, or maybe I just keep bad records.

The eggplants are starting to flower.  Asian and Globe, I believe.

Either the bunnies or the groundhog ate almost all my peas.  I knew there was a reason I wanted to plant them inside the fenced in portion of the garden...  Hopefully, I'll remember next year.  While badly weeded, here are the carrots.

And the beets.

Chloe loves to go outside, but I strongly feel letting your cat roam about outside unsupervised is a crappy idea.  Do you know some moron cop in Alabama (that statement does not mean I hate all cops or I am anti-cop, I am specifically referring to one cop...why do I need that disclaimer...yeesh) told my mom that it's fine for people to abandon cats outside because they can survive, no problem.  Seriously?  Good Lord, all this technology and information at your fingertips yet people continue to be incredibly dumb.  Point is, I don't let her walk outside because they can be exposed to parasites and I have had enough worm issues with the cat we adopted from the shelter.  So instead.  I tell her I'm going outside, she runs into her crate, and I carry her around and talk to her.

I might wire tie the giant dog crate my dog destroyed and see if I can bring her outside and let her hang out in that.  Either way, it's nice to have the company.

So that's it, folks.  Other than the overabundance of cherry tomatoes, it's been a weird and not super successful gardening year.  Even my gigantic kale plants called it a day.  I started new ones recently.  Hopefully, it wasn't too late.  I'll keep you posted.  Hope you're all enjoying your summer.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Quickie Garden Tour - May 4, 2018

I am so far behind on my gardening tasks, I can't even begin to explain.  The weather was wonky, so I started all my seeds late.  My seedlings are still tiny.  I did sow some seeds outside: cucumbers, cantaloupe, watermelon, three different types of bush beans, dill, parsley, and basil.  I thought my asparagus were all eaten by one of my outdoor critters, so I started 12 new ones.  Then yesterday, I had asparagus popping up!  Who knows what's going on.

The Rutgers Scarlet Strawberry Plants started coming up.  I planted them in three boxes last year.  One is now pretty full, the second has not so much and the third has nothing.  While they are good strawberries, they were hella expensive.  I'm going to get some regular ones at the garden center and put them in late too.

The pear tree went from barren to covered in leaves and flowers in three days.  Literally, three days.

The mint patch is overrun with some random weed, but there is still plenty of mint growing.  I've started the tedious process of pulling those weeds out so the mint has room to grow.

The Early Purple Sprouting Broccoli overwintered, but was covered in whiteflies and their irritating eggs.  I mixed a batch of non-toxic whitefly killer (recipe to follow, I just want to confirm that it works long term).  It did kill all the eggs and the leaves are shiny, healthy and bug-free.  Let's see if this is the cure for my whitefly problems.

This zucchini was the first of my seedlings to sprout and looked just beautiful.  Then I put it outside, and we went from beautiful weather to freezing and it hasn't held up too well.  I am trying to give it some extra attention and fingers crossed, it will survive.

This is the first year I didn't plant my peas on St. Patrick's Day.  But they seem to be doing fine nonetheless.  I planted carrots and beets in the boxes with them.  Hopefully, this year I'll remember to harvest them instead of letting them rot in the box like an idiot.

The rain barrels are set up.  I'm going to turn the blue barrel someone gave me into an overflow barrel.  More on that later.

So not much to show yet, but come back soon.  That whitefly killer spray looks like it could be a winner and I'll post it as soon as I'm sure.  Hope you're all enjoying the warmer weather.