A Trellis for the Grapes
About a week ago it felt like March, and now it feels like August! If I had my garden in its final complete state (if I ever get that point), I would have maybe watered a bit and relaxed. Since it is not in its complete state, I worked. Saturday I dug eight 2′ post holes for the 4″x4″ posts for my grapes. The grapes have been small enough that I small stakes have been good enough to guide one vine upward, and so I have pushed this endeavor off since April. But I wanted to get it done. I installed the loops for the guide wires, dropped them in the holes and filled with cement. Probably tonight or tomorrow I will run the wire and start to train them (and re-watch all the YouTube videos on how to do this. Basically, you want to get the main vine to the thickness of a pencil before you allow it to grow out in either direction. I am not exactly sure where to prune, though, and so will need to review.
Oh, I forgot how sore you can get from post holing. My forearms and shoulders are quite sore. My thumbs twitch when I try to text!
The Fruit of the Vines Cometh… As Do More Pests
Some of the tomato vines are officially 8′ tall. I could barely prune the suckers off a few of them! All of them are laden with fruit, and like the picture to the left, are HUGE. We’ve gotten a few small cherry tomatoes from the plants I grew in the greenhouse, but we got our first cherokee purple on Saturday. It was sooo delicious!
Some, however, are getting eaten by caterpillars. 😦 I picked some out and killed them with my pruners… one more pest to look for. I may have the “tomato hornworm”, as I just researched. The author suggests checking plants daily (others say twice a week), spraying the vines with soapy water to make them wiggle. Once found, drop them into soapy water (very similar to that of the potato beetle nymphs). It also recommends some organic insecticide soaps to spray on my plants, as well as some natural remedies. I am going to inspect tonight, and order some of the soap. I am actually glad this has happened, and that I am blogging. I need to know what to look for and how to deal with these pests, preferably organically. In the past I have just sort felt resigned to whatever happened. Not anymore.
I am also seeing some fruit on the winter squash vines. This is a picture of my first spaghetti squash! Yay! Below are my cucumbers, which I really started to yield. My kids love cucumbers, though. I will cut them up for my 1 & 3 year olds and they just crunch away. I originally had the top of the trellis built with a 6′ x 1/2″ bamboo pole, but it was starting to seriously droop. I had more 1″ diameter poles and added them to the top. The cucumber below is a Suyo long – this was taken maybe a week ago. It has since probably doubled in length!