Monday, July 10, 2017

Harvest Monday - July 10, 2017

This is turning out to be "one of those years" - you know, those really bad years that are sprinkled amongst the good ones?

Here we are in mid-July and this is my first Harvest Monday post of the year - THAT'S the kind of year it's shaping up to be.  Firstly, I've been incredibly busy both in and out of the garden - I'm having a hard time keeping up (and truth be told, I'm not keeping up at all but am way behind).  Then there is the frustration of those dang rabbits - they are still getting into the veg areas and I've just about given up.  Many veg have been damaged, among them lettuce, peppers and eggplant, but their primary focus lately has been beans and peas.  The rabbits are, apparently, very particular as some varieties have minimal damage while others are now mere sticks poking out of the soil.

Another unwanted newcomer to the garden that I mentioned in a previous post has ramped up it's presence - from one lone beetle spotted about a month ago to this:

Potato Beetle Larva - All were picked off and dropped into a soapy water solution
minutes after their moment in the spotlight

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Garden Project of 2017 - The Problem

I'm back from the Capital Region Fling and it was amazing - as I knew it would be.  The gardens are always wonderful but what really makes this event special (yes, I know I keep saying this, but it bears repeating) are the people - what an incredible bunch they are!

2017 Garden Bloggers Fling -Capital Region
Photo Credit:   Wendy Niemi Kremer
Once back home I was, as you would expect, faced with mountains of laundry to do and an equally daunting meadow of weeds to pull.  The good news is that I also found quite a few harvestable goodies, including snow and snap peas (finally!).  With our cool spring, these were a long time coming.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Year of the Pest

When it comes to gardening, one thing is inevitable - no matter what size space you have, be it a balcony or an acreage, you will inevitably encounter a pest or critter that makes you go "ARGH!!"

It's only mid-June and I've already had more than my fair share of "ARGH!" moments - in fact, I've had more pest issues in the past two months than in any full year in the past.

So here's a rundown of what's been plaguing my garden, starting with those critters and pests that I've already spoken about in previous posts.

(1)  Rabbits

The bunnies have been finding gaps in my fencing and feasting in my I know how Mr. McGregor felt.

Bunny #1

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Early June Update - Part 3

Last but not least in my June garden update series is Area #2.  This is the smallest section of the vegetable garden, containing only four beds.

First up is the brassica bed, which is having a peculiar issue that I've not seen before - sowbugs eating the greens (aka pill bugs, aka roly polie’s, aka wood lice – I think these guys corner the market on the number of names they have…over 17 according to Wikipedia!)

Sowbugs enjoying their lunch

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Early June Update - Part 2

Up on the hilltop, most of the spears in the asparagus bed have been left to fern up and feed the developing roots.  This will be the last season of holding back on the harvest - next year it will be full steam ahead!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Early June Update - Part 1

With all the rain we’ve had this spring, things are growing at breakneck speed – not the least of which are the weeds!  Our mild winters in the past couple of years have also been a bit of a curse as I firmly believe that they’ve resulted in weedier and buggier growing seasons.  Even previously well-behaved ornamentals on the north side of our house such as sweet woodruff and lily-of-the-valley have become aggressive in their spread.

As is usually the case each year, I went from being on top of things in the early spring to falling behind - now I'm playing catch up.  There have already been some setbacks in the veg garden but, overall, things are looking good. 

In this post, I'll concentrate on what's happening in Area #1 and first up are the tomatoes.  I’ve reduced the number of tomato plants I'm growing this year from 28 to 24 (which I spoke about HERE) and am spreading them out over 3 beds.  One side of each bed holds tomatoes, while the other is planted up with a different companion (eggplant, basil or beans).

Tomatoes (right) partnered with eggplant

Thursday, May 25, 2017

A Fruity Look at 2017

The Berries

High on the priority list over the next couple of weeks is cleaning up the raspberry and blackberry runs.  I mulched last year but the grass & weeds just keep taking over as I’ve never had enough time to would think I'd know better by now.  The raspberries are doing well regardless, but the blackberries have taken a beating - I'm sure our hot, dry weather last summer didn't help matters.

The blackberry canes are so small that if it weren't for the flags,
we wouldn't know where the runs are.