This hasn’t been a good year for mine. First the late freeze, then the early heat, then the flooding rains. Spinach and lettuce bolted, brassicas got some kind of root rot, now the tomatoes are going yellow from all the water. No bees in sight, even with the milkweeds blooming.
I should start to plant weeds - they’re going gangbusters!
We got a real late start this year. We didn’t plant our corn, beans, cukes, and okra until last week. They have mostly all sprouted and look pretty good after some rain this week. Planted out tomatoes and peppers about 3 weeks ago, they are looking good, some of the tom’s are about 4ft tall already and just about all of them have blossoms on them. Cabbages were planted about 2 weeks ago, and are looking great as well. Potatoes were the first things planted out, over a month ago. We had a flooding rain a couple days after that, and lost quite a few seed taters then, but since then about 35 hills have come up and are doing nicely.
Good so far, it was a warm winter here in SoCal so the cherry tomato survived the winter and really hasn’t stopped producing. It’s pretty much taken over my raised veggie bed. The Black Krim is doing just ok, it’s a decent number of tomatoes, but it’s showing a lot of leaf curl and it’s growth has been stunted. Not sure why, maybe not enough water. Cukes have done ok, but not as well as last year. This year I’m trying a butternut squash and it’s spreading out nicely. It initially was suffering from blossom end rot, but I think I have that solved now, so I’m hoping the the squash developing will make it.
Fruit-wise, I have a bunch of passion fruit developing, a single dragonfruit (hoping for more), lots of figs, bunch of citrus, and a few apples (so far.) The apples tend to stretch out their blossoming cycle due to our climate. Not all of their branches have broken dormancy and my stupid HC hasn’t pushed out anything yet, except for a bunch of root suckers.
Insect pressure hasn’t been too bad with the exception of ants and aphids. The aphids were giving my apple trees a bit of a hard time until I washed them away. I attempted to make some homemade boric acid bait traps for the ants, but I think I got the proportions wrong (the recipe I used called for some syrup) and it crystalized. Anything that went into the trap didn’t come out, but I don’t think any of the poison made it to the ant colonies.
Kansas is always different every year and that is the same. The old timers here did can weeds such as lambs quarter and always seemed to have plenty to eat. I diversify and keep in mind nothing works out the way I plan it. Dandelions can be pretty bitter but one thing the old timers taught me is that sometimes in life its time to eat dandelions. The old timers embraced dandelions and made wine from the flowers, salad from the leaves, and tea from the roots. With all that said I sure hope things improve for you and some nice fruit and veggie crops pull through.
Yes, it’s late, but I think we’ll have enough time for a good harvest on just about everything, except maybe some of the hot peppers. Corn and some larger tomatoes usually takes about 90 days, so we should get ours in before any fall frosts.
Yes, good to know this stuff all the same. Like we have white oaks and unlike red oaks the acorns are not bitter, you could make bread with them. Here too the trees are so big the acorn meat is very big! I started using arugula, and tried growing some. easy to grow, bolted now, but provided a lot of leaves. It is pungent but I like it a lot, screw lettuce. The home grown is way more flavorful too, easy peasy to grow, like growing dandelions (which the leaves resemble).
I replanted some onions to collect seed, good to know how! Worked great! Hopefully I can collect arugula seed too.
was a dry cool spring but now getting into the 80’s and humid. everything is growing like crazy. all my new bushes i put in the spring are putting on alot of good growth. finally getting regular rain again so all is well. got to get on the spraying tho. bugs are chopping on my strawberries!
Hahahahaha. Grandpa made vicious dandelion wine. You better have your big boy britches for that stuff! I held my nose to get the buzz! Thanks Clark. I’ll make it. I just tried to bite off more than I can chew. It’s been a very good learning experience and yes I am getting some good veggies and nice first fruit this year. Just the unpredictable Florida weather. Last year droughted the first 6 months of the year this year we’ve been drowning! I’m only here on the weekend so I’ll back it all off a bit. Concentrate more on my herbs, flowers and fruit and make the veggie garden smaller and more manageable. Three and a half years and I’ll be here full time and crank it back up. I’m going to go with sorghum this week and see if I can’t have a small money crop. Getting a big juicer to make syrup later in the year. I love experimenting and finding my limits.
My garden stuff is doing pretty good, despite the torrential downpours, and gale-force winds…
I replanted a few beans lost to washouts twice, and a few that were snapped at ground level. When they washed the third time I wised up and decided that those areas are simply the drainage for the row and moved on. I’ve taken two gallons of beans and was a little surprised that they were coming in already.
We’ve had some really hot temps too and none of that has seemingly hampered tomato set. I have lots of toms on everything I have out there so I’m keeping my fingers crossed. Have taken a few cucs and cherry toms but the only regular tomato with color enough to think about taking is an Early Girl.
Every year’s weather has its oddities and anomalies. Gardening is a fire-and-adjust game and hopefully one becomes better prepared for these.
Last year was the first time deer hit my garden (sweet potatoes). Now I know how to prepare.
I’ve sown parsnips 3x and only have 2 plants. Gave them my best shot all three times and came to the conclusion the seeds were poor quality (big box store).
This year I’m working on saving my own seed to see if it is always true that they are more vigorous (due to a 1 season adjustment to my growing conditions?) We shall see. I’ve done some seed saving with tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, cilantro, spinach, basil, carrots and beans. This year I’m adding onions, other carrots, dill, sage, other beans and maybe cukes. The lettuce, tomato and pepper seeds were super germinators; the spinach, maybe not so much so I’m trying again. The challenge here is keeping the seeds dry as they are finishing up. One year, after the carrots reached the ‘birds nest’ stage it rained a lot. The seeds germinated in the soggy birds nest. This year I have a plastic cover handy to keep them dry as they finish up. Fire and adjust.