My vegetable garden is not having its best year. The peas I
planted on St. Patrick's day came up fine, but were eaten at
about 1 foot by something - maybe a woodchuck or rabbit.
They tried very hard to fufill their botanical destiny by branching
out, but with that setback they were late beginning to bloom, and
then the hot weather hit. Results - we had peas to include in
stir-fries several times, but not nearly the lavish crop I had been
expecting. I pulled them out and planted beans, but a
combination of conditions - drought, cool weather, then hot
weather, slugs, etc. have meant that they are just now beginning
to make beans. I have planted five or six times at week or ten
day intervals, but they look as if most of them will be ready about
the same time - too many beans to cope with at once.
I had a nice early stand of red mustard which I was cutting at
a small stage for mesclun, but when the hot week came along
it all bolted. I had about two good meals of cooked mustard
greens, but had to pull out the rest. The first two or three rounds
of squash I planted did not even come up - ground too cold, or
eaten by birds - don't know. I finally have several hills of squash
growing, but they are quite a few weeks away from eating. The
onions I planted early are looking pretty good, and I have been
eating some of them as green onions - plant them close and
pull out every-other-one as the season progresses. Okra plants
are several inches high - maybe they will make it before frost.
The lettuce bed has been pretty good, but is now bolting with
this week's heat. Herbs - basil, cilantro, parsley, are doing
well. Pak choi is already bolting so I have planted another row.
All-in-all it has not been a good season, but we'll have some
vegetables before the season is out. Oh yes, tomatoes. I grow
two large pots of the small (cherry, grape, etc.) tomatoes in
hanging pots in the breezeway against the garage wall. They
are full of green fruits, and already reaching onto the garage
roof. I will have to get a ladder to harvest some of them. The
tomatoes I planted in the garden have not grown very much -
we first had very cool weather and then extreme heat - back
and forth for two cycles. We are in the extreme heat cycle now -
in the 90s today. So far there are a few green ones, but not
much growth. I never expect to have tomatoes ripe before
August, but doesn't look as if I will get them by then this year.
Not a very good garden year. Part of the problem is that I am
just not able to do as much as I once did - old age - but the other
is that the weather has been so strange - alternating between
unusual cool and unusual heat, but very little rain. Oh well.
In a message dated 07/11/2005 6:47:34 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
To all who grow vegetables, greetings.
My vegetable plants are in various stages of shutting down because of
the heat. Tomatoes [except the wild ones] have quit blooming because
the nights are too warm. Wild ones are still going but will shut down
soon. Jalapeno pepper shows signs of stress from the heat. Cucumber,
which is growing on a trellis in a 30-gallon pot in the shade, is just
beginning to produce [lots]. Eggplant is blooming but does not seem to
be setting fruit--probably a night temperature problem.
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