Garden Update 8/8/14

These past 2 weeks have been all about getting my left raised bed ready to start a fall/winter crop.  Some new seeds were ordered (let’s be honest, ordering seeds is addictive) and the plans are shaping up.  Most of my summer crops are chugging along happily so I’m not ready to pull them.  Lost a few battles, but really, who doesn’t in the full heat of summer?  Anyhow, here is what has been going on.

FLOWERING:

Had to vine my heirloom tomatoes over to my vertical trellises to keep them supported.

Had to vine my heirloom tomatoes over to my vertical trellises to keep them supported, growing and producing.

In the sweltering heat of summer, nothing new is flowering.  Okra is starting to hit its stride and those flowers are beautiful.  Tomatoes and peppers are plugging along happily as well.  So since I have no new flowers for you, I’m going to share my tomato “hedge” that has happened with my Granny Cantrell and Pineapple tomatoes.  I have worked diligently to keep them to a single vine, and holy cow, have those vines gone bananas.  The pineapple tomato did get a second vine and I’m cool with that.  So when my 6 ft stakes ran out of room, I guided the tomatoes over to my trellis and have been training them along that.  Seems to be working well enough cause more tomatoes are coming and each vine is roughly 8-10 ft long.  Wowzers!

FRUITING:

Some crazy carrots from our garden.

The “red potato” carrot and the “runaway” carrot.

Again, not much new is happening here.  However, my carrots, while mostly yellow carrots, are really finally ready for harvest.  So I’ll get those out soon and get some winter stuff growing.  I’ve been lucky with SFG in that my soil in the beds is very soft.  So all my carrots have been straight.  Except for the day my kids recently came out to help me pull carrots.  It was the first time my 20 month old helped, so that was really exciting for me and him.  But then this “runaway” carrot turned up to get us all laughing and then my daughter found a carrot that we all think looks more like a red potato.  These entertaining moments really make the garden worth it!

THE UGLY:

Aside from our lost cucumbers, we are fighting other battles these past few weeks.

1&2: Catepillar, their damage and their poop (aka. the easiest evidence to find that they are snacking) 3) my sick watermelon leaf 4) worm sticking out of the hole it made in my butternut squash.

1&2) Catepillar, their damage and their poop (aka. the easiest evidence to find that they are snacking)
3) my sick watermelon leaf
4) worm sticking out of the hole it made in my butternut squash.

1 & 2)The caterpillars are eating every thing!!!!!  Tomatoes, peppers, swiss chard, broccoli (they are even inside the head of my broccoli … see ya broccoli!).  Butterflies are not my friends right now because they leave their hungry little babies behind.  The primary evidence of caterpillars ravaging my plants is the lovely poop pellets you can see in the lower left picture there.  The upper left pictures shows one of the many caterpillars on a partially eaten leaf.
3) One of my watermelon has leaves that look like this.  I honestly have no clue what is causing this.  Its mainly on one vine … but I fear it’s spreading.  Help!
4)  My butternut squash plant started looking like it was on its way out.  Wilting and yellow leaves and such.  Then I was checking out the produce to see how close it was to being ready to harvest when this little critter wiggled out of the hole to wave at me.  GAG!  I think we will pass on these squash.

HARVEST: harvest 8:8

It has been more of a constant trickle than steady waves of late.  These past 2 weeks we have collect:

  • Beets (chioggia): 4 green tops, 3 roots
  • Beets (golden): 2 green top, 1 root
  • Beets (red): 7 green top, 8 roots
  • Broccoli: 3 small florets
  • Carrots (kaleidoscope blend): 2 white, 4 red/purple, 1 orange, 14 yellow, 7 tops
  • Cucumbers: 34
  • Haricot verts (green bush beans): 85
  • Lettuce: 6 side salads
  • Okra (Clemson Spineless): 15
  • Peppers: 2 green, 1 red
  • Squash (butterbush butternut): 2
  • Swiss chard (neon lights): 17 leaves
  • Tomatoes (Amelia): 1 green, 2 ripe
  • Tomatoes (Granny Cantrell): 5 ripe, 1 green
  • Tomatoes (Heinz Roma): 4 ripe
  • Tomatoes (Pineapple): 2 ripe

We are getting ready to do another planting soon.  What will you be planting here in the late summer/prefall time?

Just to end with something pretty, almost walked into a 2-3 ft wide spider web that a pretty small spider made between my trellis and my carrots and the nearest tree.  Glad I saw it inches of my face and not all over my face!

Almost walked smack into this web.

Almost walked smack into this web.

 

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