Monday, June 10, 2013

Veggie Gardening 2013

I'm planting less this year. Last year with the 6 week drought, the super heat wave and cold weather tomatoes pretty much combined into one massive failure. So this year I did not start seeds indoors, instead I bought 4 larger size tomatoes at Wal-Mart for $3.38 each. Two of the pots had a second plant which I managed to separate and plant.

I kept postponing planting outside because the night temperatures kept dropping into the low 40s and high 30s. Then June arrived with a 3 night cold snap, the lowest low hitting 31.8 Fahrenheit. I have no idea if there was a frost or not but last week I finally planted the 6 outside and placed "walls o' water" around them to keep them warm at night. (Just do a web search, links change all the time) I haven't used them in years but figured why the heck not. They're a pain to set up, keep falling over till you get the cylinders filled. I ended up placing my flat nosed shovel inside each one till filled. I must say though, the plants are busing out nicely.

I bought 4 varieties: Celebrity, New Girl, Early Girl and Sun Sugar, a cherry. Assuming they do well that ought to be enough for 2 people. Won't be enough for canning but I haven't canned tomatoes in years.

A few days ago I also planted 3 types of bush green beans in the same garden. (This is the one where the hutch run used to be, I surrounded it with 50 feet of 36 inch high chicken wire.) My usual 2 varieties of Jade and Masai and a new one, a flat bean the name of which escapes me just now.  In a couple weeks I will plant a second crop.

Much earlier, well late May as, again, the weather was lousy, I planted one crop of snow peas. Dwarf Grey Sugar I bought locally. I don't think I'll plant more till August. Generally peas like cooler weather, no idea how this batch will do as May ended up being hotter than average and thus far June is acting like it should still be May. But warmer weather will return eventually.

The last few days I've been trying to dig out the garden across the driveway. It is filled with tree roots, weeds, and the lower half is very, very wet. I tried weed killer which pretty much was a total loss. The drier part I did finally get clean enough though there are some roots that are just pulled up and hanging about on top of the dirt. (This is dirt, not soil, it's not good enough to be called more than dirt). I'll need a hand saw to remove the roots as their wider than an inch in diameter.

I dug some holes along the center line and planted 13 hills of both pickling and slicing cucumbers. I had seeds from last year and new ones from this year. Higher up where the roots are worse I planted 6 hills of zucchini, both green and yellow. One is called Butta that I planted last year the first time and really liked. Only planted one of the Romanesco variety I tried last year, I have a vague memory of it not lasting well and having a thin middle like a gourd. I did plant another generic green variety called, Dark Green Zucchini. No idea if that's an actual variety or just something the seed company threw together out of leftovers.

I also planted a few dill seeds between the zucchini. Dill seed for pickling is not cheap and dill is usually easy to grow. Hopefully, I won't mistake it for weeds and pull them up if and when they sprout.

I also have those 8 strawberry plants and 10 more I bought at Wal-mart but I think are dead because it's been more than a week and they look dead. The All-Stars I got from the Alcona conservation district are already flowering.

So that's my gardening report for now except I did also get my blueberry plants from Miller Nursery. Three of the 5 were pretty nice plants, one had few roots and another had a couple of limp twigs. But I planted them and they all seem to be alive so my fingers are crossed they will survive.

No comments: