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Personal blatherings, living simply, gardening, cooking, canning, dehydrating, knitting, spinning and more.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Smallish update (Black Thumb of Death Gardening)

Edit: I have imported this from my The Black Thumb of Death Gardening Blog to my regular blog...  

There is not much to report. Everything is planted. Sprouts are appearing and the seeds we started inside are now in their spots. Only a couple went roots-up, but I had a couple of back-ups ready. We are keeping the plastic over the hoops at night. We put sections inside where the tomato and peppers are planted, making little greenhouse-like areas until our nights get warmer.

The photos are a bit bright, no matter how much I fiddled with them. It was a bright day!

Though we had watered that morning, the wind sucked the moisture out of this area's beds. sigh... The boxes in the middle has potatoes growing in them. Most of the plants are about 8" at this point. Sorry, I forgot to take photos of them.
You can just make out some of the green of the new plants. We will be adding some dustings of compost to aid the soil. I will also plant lilac bushes around this area to make a living fence. I had the fishing line up, which seems to work for the deer when they get spooked after bumping into "nothing". After finding a dead hummingbird that missed the line, I took the line off for now. We clamp the plastic on top during the day, making it easy to let down in the evening.  The photo to the left is one strip around the previous area. The peas are coming up at this point. I just planted the corn around three of the sides, sunflowers on one. The other sides will have pole beans. Between the corn, sunflowers and either replacing the fishing line or putting up string, the peas and beans will have the ability to climb. I had done this in another area with success.
This is the beds by our driveway. It has mainly potatoes and cabbages, with a variety of veggies planted among them. You can see the potato leaves. The tall leeks are from last year. They came up this spring. I will be pulling them soon to go into a soup. This was the area we had a lot of trouble with moles. This spring, Himself set the traps, getting two. So far, no more moles. I have old straw sprinkled around the outsides of the beds to keep the dust down a bit. Toads like it, as do the ants. I have traps made up and set around most of the beds. this year, no illegal aphid work camps will be allowed.

These are the bush beans, with one bed having a line of peas. It is mostly dry bean types- cranberry and black beans. There is a small patch of green beans. I ran out of that variety of seeds. something is eating holes in the leaves. Out will come my books. Normally, neem with a little sploosh of soap works for most everything. I spray in the evening after the bees are home and the toads and frogs are on their way. I try to be careful.

These two long beds have a variety of root veggies and lettuces growing among squashes, pickling cucumbers, tomatoes and peppers. The furthermost two areas have small artichoke plants coming up. they will most likely not produce this year. You can see the tall plant there? A spinach that came up this spring. It is bolting.
The strawberries are very happy. We got 6 strawberries today. We ate them. (laughing) I plant onions among the plants. they seem to like each other, the onions seem to repel pests. The dark area in front of the strawberry boxes, surrounded with straw, has watermelons. We can always try, yes? The circles of stone by the boxes? I had three extra tomato plants. It looked like a good spot, so why not? I sprinkled a little powdered eggshells to give them a boost.

The last photo is the herb beds. There are a lot of teeny sprouts, most do not show in the photo. I have cooking and medicinal herbs in these beds. I also have companion herb plants in all the other veggie beds. I end up with a lot of herbs, but I do not mind. I forgot... There is a wild strawberry plant coming up to the far back by the garage wall. The plastic tub on the ground has my homemade ant bait. It is much slower, but safer than the more common methods.
That is it for now. I will look at the garden today and see little. a month later, a jungle of plants. It is amazing. I am gathering everything for processing. I hope we get a yield like the first year. I planted by the moon. I did not last year, getting half of the yield of the previous year, though I expanded. If this year goes well, I will be in the garden all morning, the kitchen for the rest of the day and evening. I do not mind. It is well worth it.

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