Harvest This Morning
The last few days have been very very cool. The high yesterday was 66 deg, and yes, it is June! This morning I spent some time harvesting from one of my rows of peas (third so far this season), then found two Marketmore and one Suyo cucumbers, pulled the last of the mature Rutabaga from out front, and then had Aidan grab a few more heads of Buttercrunch lettuce from the front as well. Some of the peas are a bit old, but should taste fine this week. Some of the Rutabaga were a little small – I am wondering if the soil was too compact there. This is from a new bed and there is clay underneath.
I plant some German Red hardneck garlic last October, and had plenty of space for more… so I grabbed some of “regular” softneck garlic that I had from Costco and planted that. I might as well. Here is that softneck. Some are small but 17 heads – not bad! The bottom two leaves were browning while the tops were green, and I read that is the time to harvest. The hardneck looks a lot bigger (from the stalks) and still has green leaves, so I will leave them.
We had a big rain storm come through on Tuesday, with a lot of wind. It blew my corn FLAT. It was so sad to see. I am not sure if the roots and water would have been able to pull it back up, so I used some of my wooden stakes and twine to add support. Hopefully it will grow normally…well, if it doesn’t I will add a bit more support. Maybe even get an 800 hotline with staff… 😉 This particular bed was planted from seed on April 25th by Aidan, with 1.5 more beds planted two weeks later.
Colorado Potato Beetle
Yes, this pest has visited my potatoes. At first, I thought there were a bunch of lady bugs crawling on the leaves. But as I looked closer, they looked like big red slugs (they are actually called nymphs, I think) with black spots all over. When I googled potato pests and discovered this demon was in my garden, I became very anxious. I looked up what I could do, different insecticides, etc., but determined that my first course of action should be to pick them out and drop them in soap water (per my research). I actually lost some sleep over it, anxious to get up and get them out. I planted 22 pounds of seed potatoes – I am not going to lose them!! So early Sunday I went out…it was very much like picking peas or beans. There is always more hidden, so I kept changing my viewing angle and I think I got them all. I have been and will continue to scan for them throughout the season. I also apply some Sevin dust liberally.
I am so waiting for these to ripen. I have 51 plants trellis, and they are all doing well. I have been very active in trimming the suckers, and have been trying to keep them to one vine. They have grown so incredibly fast, faster than I thought they could grow, faster than I could sometimes keep up. So, probably about 25% have two leader vines. Some had a few more, but I pruned them back. The picture to the right shows the type of trellising I went with this year. I used 1″ PVC cut to 8′, then tied them to garden stakes. I then ran 1″ PVC across the top. I painted it to protect it from UV. We will see how many seasons it lasts. I then ran nylon twine, twisted around the young plants, up to the top bar. As the tomato grows, I keep twisting it around the twine. About half of the tomatoes are taller than me now…