Thursday, July 15, 2010

The good, the bad and the ugly.

Let's start with the good.  The things I like about my garden.  I love these tomato supports.  They're keeping everything healthy and are working out very well.  I'll be putting some twine along the outside to try to keep everything contained.

The tomatoes are producing like mad.  I haven't had any red ones yet, but there are so many on the vine, that I should have a banner year.  No sign of disease either!

This has been my absolute best year for peppers.  Usually they do nothing until late August.  Many years I've had to buy peppers to make salsa.  Not this year!

This is a Rouge Vif dTemps or Cinderella pumpkin.  It's getting bigger by the minute and is being joined by many other pumpkins and winter squash.

The corn is getting very tall and starting to tassle.  I am so excited for my first taste of corn.  This is my first year attempting corn, so far so good.

Now onto the bad.

The weeds are unreal.  This is by far the worst.  This is my strawberry bed.  It was created from the composting of all the waste removed when I expanded the garden a few years ago.  It was covered with a tarp to kill weeds and compost everything  down.  It clearly needed to cook a bit longer.  The rest of the garden is weedy, but this is insane.  I swear I could clear this away today and it would look just like this within 3 days.  There is even a rogue lettuce and pumpkin growing haphazardly in there.  I'm seriously considering forgoing the strawberries and covering the whole mess with the tarp again. 

Then there are the squash vine borers.  I get them every year.  I've tried everything you can think of to combat them.  Some years I get a good crop before they're eaten, some years I don't.  This is one of those years where I won't get much.  The gold rush are holding their own, but not producing much.  The black beauty just got pulled out with not a single squash. 

Overall, it's been a great year.  The unprecedented warmth we've had has been wonderful for many of the plants.  The accompanying drought, not so much.  I've been watering lots, but have been unable to keep up with weeds.  My asthma has made it virtually impossible for me to breath in the 90 + degree heat with humidity in the 70s.  Thankfully, things seem to be struggling through the weeds for the most part.  They got a good head start.  Next year I'll mulch better to keep down the weeds.


farmwifetwo said...

I got smart and cut way back this year. Same space, less in it. I planted what we could eat, plus a little extra but that was all. There's much more out in the field b/c I told Dh he couldn't plant it in the garden.... I don't have time.

Tonight for supper is sausages, red potatoes from the garden, salad with lettuce and celery from the store, broccoli, carrots and red onions from the garden. My cherry tomatoes aren't ripe yet, nor are the 500 plants (half beefsteaks, half roma's for canning) in the field.

It's made for a much happier and productive gardening season.

I am going to try lettuce in august. It's always sour so I'm going to wait until it cools down. My raspberries will all have to come out this year :( and my strawberries may get a berry or 2 before the season is over but they have settled in nicely. Will add more next spring but I expect a crop off of them.

The pail of sour cherries is in the sink thawing to be put into pie sized pkgs and refroze. 6 cups of blueberries from the fruit farm are in the freezer and 8 cups of black raspberries - wild - from the farm are there too. Dh will pick me the wild elderberries when they are ripe and they too will go in the freezer.

The Mom said...

Farmwife, it sounds like things are going well in your garden. Dinner sounds delicious. I'm trying to figure out what is worth my time and what isn't. Next year's garden will probably look quite different.

Karen Anne said...

I got so overwhelmed with weeds in one area that I put down some cardboard I had around, with rocks to weight it down. Take that!

I'm amazed at all you got done with asthma. I open the door in the morning, all set to work in the garden, and it's like a sauna, so everything is mostly fending for itself.

The Mom said...

Karen Anne, I'm thinking the whole thing is going to be covered for the next year or 2. The asthma is kicking my butt this summer. Hopefully it will end soon.

kitsapFG said...

I think your plan to smother that section for a year or more is a good idea. The weeds look like they have a strong foot hold and smothering them out is a good idea. I would cover it with carboard and plastic the first year. Following year, remove the plastic and turn it all over again (to expose the dormant seeds, and do it all over again. One of my strawberry patches is getting over taken with a perennial plant that has crept into it - I am going to move the strawberry patch new spring and probably do this treatment to that bed myself.

farmwifetwo said...

It's taken me 12yrs to shake the "super Mom" syndrome :)

Last year I was injured - steel projectile picked up when Dh was mowing grass = 3" scar in my right shin - so my Dad planted my garden... who needs 3 hills of cucumbers?? One is more than enough...

I'm on R&R this summer. It was a long "autism" school year... but it's been settled and sorted for next year and I'm just doing what needs to be done. Kids are going to the sitters one day/wk instead of having a teenager in to help... They and I are enjoying the break.

Still have canning to do. 2yrs of poor tomatoes and no fresh canned... Makes you appreciate the work that goes into them and how much we miss them.

Now... anyone have time to come and prune my bushes?? If I ignore them long enough the pruning fairy will come and do it for me...right?? :)

The Mom said...

Laura, it's good to hear it from you as well. At first I thought I just needed to do a better job, but there doesn't seem to be a way to get the weeds under control.

Farmwife, I need to get over the super mom thing. I also need to pick a few necessary crops and go from there.