Garden Update

Should I start with the good news or the bad news?  Gardening can be so frustrating, can’t it?  There is just so much to learn.  In the past, I was content just planting things, letting the sprinklers do their thing, and then enjoying a few garden goodies.  It seems this year, after doing a lot of research about soil, building more planter boxes, and choosing our plants more carefully, we have run into even more trouble!  I’m trying to look on the bright side, knowing at least I am learning something and it will get easier every year.  On the other hand, we have definitely made a huge investment of time and money, therefore making all “mistakes” more difficult to accept.  None-the-less, I am more committed than ever and have no intention of giving up any time soon.

All that to say, let’s start with some good news…

gu1

We have our first zucchini!  The leaves are getting huge.  Sadly, we’ve also had several flowers look beautiful and then just shrivel up and fall off.  There are a few leaves with holes and browning around the edges.  I’ve been spraying with neem oil every other day and that definitely helps.  I read you are not suppose to spray every day, but I may give it a try if I still am having problems.

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Our lettuce continues to grow quickly, and is consistently good.  It is the least of my worries, though I do spray with neem oil as well…

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Our tomatoes… at the time I took this picture, (about 3 days ago), I was SO happy about them.  Tons of flowers, green tomatoes, and looking’ GOOD!  Then yesterday I noticed one branch of leaves was curled up.  Huh?  Today I noticed several more branches are beginning to curl.  I spent some time trying to figure out the problem online this morning, but alas my kids wanted me to make breakfast.  From what I was able to read, it does not look good.  Boo.  I am going to try a little more research tomorrow, and then I may pull them out and start over.

gu4

Our Santa Rosa plums are AWESOME!  I counted 16 this year… our first year with fruit.  We bought this tree 3 years ago, and it was literally a tiny stick.  These plums are so delicious and taste just like my childhood plums.  All 4 kids give them a thumbs way up, and I have yet to finish one because someone will catch me taking a bite and asks for it.

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I thought this lettuce was dead.  It kept getting eaten by something, and looked awful.  I pulled off all the leaves, and have been spraying with neem oil.  Hooray for successful comebacks!

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Our peas… this picture actually doesn’t look that bad.  All new growth seems to have brown spots on the leaves, and more and more holes are showing up every day.  Even the wonders of neem oil haven’t totally “fixed” the problem.  Hmmm… any thoughts?  They did SO well last year, and I love garden peas.  I am pretty bummed about this.

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I was shocked to discover a bunch of mushrooms surrounding one of our marigolds the other day.  Apparently it means there is too much moisture, (they appeared right after our rain), and that we have super organic soil.  I guess that’s a good thing!  I pulled them out and added them to my compost.  With the weather warming up, I doubt we’ll see any more in the near future.

Last few tidbits:

*  Our green beans completely died.  It was weird.  Then I read that you are NOT suppose to plant them with marigolds, which we had on both sides.  Ugh.

*  I have noticed slugs on the marigolds, which I guess is a good thing?  They are hopefully attacking them and not our veggies?

*  Is mulch a good thing in the garden?  We have a million tiny bugs, that may be flying ants or termites or who knows what… we had them when we had the black cover on the garden, and they are still there with the black cover gone and the mulch there.

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