Thursday, June 07, 2018

How does my garden grow?

Those folks who have followed my pathetic gardening attempts over the last several years probably remember my frequent complaints about tomato blight and squash bugs.  I've moved my tomato plants to different areas each year, which is supposed to help keep blight away; sometimes it seemed to help a little, but not always.  This year when I told Cliff I was going to have a very small garden, he asked me how big I wanted it and proposed we put it just on the other side of the back yard fence in the pasture where we keep our calves.  I asked how he'd keep the calves from eating my garden and he said he'd put up some kind of fence.  

It's actually working out well.  So far (knock wood), no raccoons have made it inside the garden fence to knock little green tomatoes off the vines, so that's a big benefit and saves quite a bit of agitation on my part.  

I realize that if I followed all the gardening rules, I wouldn't have had such a problem with blight, but I'm lazy.  And doing things properly requires more work than I want to do.   So the blight has been my fault, I reckon.  Honestly, though, I don't know what I could do to prevent squash bugs, which have made it impossible for me to have cucumbers, melons, or any kind of squash.  Sevin dust has no effect on them.  Meanwhile I am tortured by stories of people having so many zucchinis they can't even give them away (but nobody offers any to me).  I can't manage to get a plant to grow to full size before the invasion:  Those nasty, sex-crazed creatures love to make babies beneath my plants. 

I have little faith that I'll escape the squash bugs this year, but I'm beginning to be hopeful on the tomato blight scene.

 This is how the garden looks from my back deck.  There are four tomato plants on the near side.  That silly, ugly little tree on the left is a Washington Hawthorn, one of the most useless trees I've ever allowed to grow on our property.  It has very sharp thorns similar to those of the Osage Orange (otherwise known as hedge trees).  One of those thorns crippled me for a couple of days until Cliff removed it from the bottom of my foot.  He said it was at least 1/4 inch long and had gone straight in.  It's one of the more painful operations he's performed on me in our married life, and I wasn't a very quiet patient.  

Here's one of my tomato plants, with not a speck of blight on it!  I guess tomatoes like it out in the pasture.  There are a lot of baby tomatoes setting on, too.  We're in a drought, but I water for an hour every morning.  That's another thing about gardening in a small space:  It's easier to water.

In a corner near the entrance gate of my garden, there's a compact cucumber plant growing.  Behind them are six stalks of corn.  Planting corn in hills worked great last year, so I'm doing it again.  Great method for small gardens.

Here's the zucchini plant, just waiting to be taken over by sex-crazed squash bugs.  On its right is a heavily-dusted eggplant.  Bugs love to turn eggplant leaves into lace.

There are four pepper plants in the garden here and there.  I planted a ghost pepper plant for the grandson and three bell pepper plants for us.

I planted a few okra seeds along the far side of the garden.  Also a few beets.

One day this week Cliff took the Little Princess back to our big mud puddle pond to catch frogs.  They came back with about 50 tiny frogs no bigger than gnats, and two larger frogs, one of whom hadn't quite made it to frog-hood... he still had his tadpole tail.

Unfortunately, he will never reach full frog-hood now.  We went to Walmart, and when we got back home I went inside and let the dog out, then back in.  Five minutes later while putting groceries up, I noticed something laying on the kitchen floor and it was this very almost-frog, dead as a doornail.  Gabe had found him dead, I'm sure, because he had been dead long enough to be dried out.  A cat, perhaps?  Usually cats don't bother frogs and toads because they taste unpleasant, but who knows.  I do know Gabe couldn't get in the tub they were in; even if he could have, he'd have turned it over in the process.  Oh well, there are frogs aplenty in this world.  After the frogs had been played with for two days, Cliff took all of the ones that were still alive back to the big mud puddle pond.  

Yes, our pond is so small it's almost a joke.  With no rain, it may actually dry up completely before long.

That's all I have for today.  


Margaret said...

I think your garden looks great. Squish bugs? Not sure what they are, but zucchini grows like crazy here. People hide from anyone trying to give it out.;)

Margaret said...

Oops, squash bugs! They look like a stink bug.

Adirondackcountrygal said...

Your garden is looking great. I might plant some squash, I have some tomatoes going. I have never had a problem with squash bugs. Last year however, I was visited by the newly invasive Red lily beetle. It showed up again this year, but I think I managed to get to them before they ate all my lily plants.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

We've had no drought conditions here. More rain that we need. Hope you do get to enjoy some homegrown tomatoes. They are the best !


your garden looks good. a shame about the frog.