Friday, June 17, 2011

In the Garden...

Carrots, 2010

Oh my days are so full! I like it; I really do, but I will also enjoy it when it is less so. I *have* written, but haven't posted. Sometimes the full days lead to full emotions and I think twice come morning and I don't post. :) You're welcome.

In the garden... I can't believe it's June 18th (almost). My garden is SO LATE this year. Most years it's just plain late. This year is worse. :) I am NEARLY done, though... Now I just hope to have a harvest!

Today I planted:
Sweet Meat Squash (seed) 
Neon Pumpkins (seed)
Patty-Pan Squash (seed)
Raider Cucumbers (seed)
Strawflowers (seed)
Edible Flowers (seed)
Lavender (seed)

This week I planted:
Rattlesnake Pole Beans (from a neighbor's saved seed)
Nash Bush Beans

I have also planted:
Roma Tomatoes (10 plants)
Old German Tomatoes (5 or 6)
Some Beefy Tomato (5 or 6)
Sweet 100 Cherry Tomato (1)
Golden Girl Tomato (5 or 6)
Some Other Tomato (5 or 6)
Spaghetti Squash (2 or 4)
Some Other Squash (or is it cucumber? zucchini?) (2 or 4)

[The reason for the variable and questionable items above is this: Sometime between my return from the greenhouse and the planting, A Child removed all the cute little tags from the dirt these were planted in, and for their 'art project' proceeded to cut them all into tiny bits. I'm depending on my memory, which is hardly helpful, because I looked at and thought about so very many things, and I don't exactly know which I decided upon. I know I have 34 tomato plants total.]

Tomato Rainbow, 2010
Purplette Onions (seed)
Purple Haze Carrots (seed)

I have tilled a spot for Precocious Corn and Indian Popcorn, but haven't planted yet. One portion of my tilled spot gets regular watering, the rest is (currently) desert. I'm not sure what to do with that difference, prior to planting...

I have also set up quite the pole bean trellis, consisting of (what amounts to) a rebar-teepee, fronted by two arched-over cattle panels, hopefully creating a tunnel/cave of bean vines for the kids to play in.

This might not sound like much, but let me tell you... It has been quite the process. My garden varies year-to-year in size (usually depending on whether or not I'm about to give birth), and layout. The entire thing is fenced in, yes, but I try to rotate things. You know, if I planted tomatoes in one spot last year, I put them somewhere else this year, etc. And between years? Well, it's not exactly nicely manicured dirt. Before planting *anything* this year, I first had to mow (I didn't mow. It choked the mower. I used a push-trimmer-thing, like a weed-eater on wheels [and steroids]) the thigh-high grass and weeds. Er, hopefully first I found all the hidden hoses and debris hiding in said grass and weeds. Then I raked what was cut off, and tossed it rudely over the nearest fence. THEN I rototilled this direction, and that, and possibly cut a length and dug a trench around each side of black plastic mulch, depending on application (i.e. not for carrot seeds, but certainly for tomato plants). I am quite proud and astonished to see such a neat-looking area where for some years it's been very wild and weedy (since 5 years ago at least).

In our dry area irrigation is also an issue, so any time something goes into the ground, I need a reasonable way to water it (this obviously changes yearly with the layout). The garden has a water line running down the center length of it (as my rototiller can attest to. Ahem.), with risers every so often (5 or 6, I think) that once held tall sprinklers. Most of these have been retrofitted with faucets or little "Y" shaped things to which you can attach two hoses, etc. I use soaker hoses for some things, attach regular hoses (for hand watering) to others, etc.

I have gone all-out with the cucurbits, as you see. I hope I am prepared this year. I bought some Neem Oil which *should* kill squash bugs without also adding to our blood chemical levels. I hope it works! Visions of pumpkins dancing in our heads... :)

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