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Re: Mid-summer garden

We're a ways behind you up here. Can't reliably plant green beans here until the first of June, so we're now in the vining/bushing stages. Most of the vegetables are just showing an interest in growing, although we've harvested one crop of bok choy and about half of the potatoes.

Mostly we spent the weekend installing/adjusting the micro-irrigation system, mulching some of the foundation beds, and top dressing a rainbow pea-gravel walkway. The irrigation installation is taking a bit longer than I anticipated, mostly because I'm not too happy with HD or Lowe's selection of parts and fittings and so have been ordering them from Peaceful Valley, which takes a couple of days for delivery. But it's coming along. I'd guess we're 1/3 ot 1/2 finished at this point.

A week or so ago, we filled a plastic tub with water then threw a bunch of ajuga cuttings in it. They have mostly rooted, so we planted a bunch of them as an edging or border on some of the main beds. Our strategy is to use plants, mulch, and gravel to minimize mud mobility during the rainy season--otherwise much of it ends up in the house. One alternative, of course, is to teach the dog to wipe her feet.

We did get to the county fair on Sunday. Something of a disappointment for gardeners. It is mostly a showcase for 4-H/FFA kids' livestock. That's okay; I enjoyed it, especially the sheep judging and exhibits. But I miss the domestic stuff--the quilting, canning, flower arranging. One of the exhibits that I thought was a bit sad was a judging of natural-colored fleeces. Beautiful whole fleeces in colors from dark grey to reddish-brown. But not a single exhibit [let alone judging] of carding those fleeces, spinning the wool, or knitting the yarn. Made me kind of sad.

On Jul 14, 2008, at 3:08 PM, Johnson, Cyndi D Civ USAF AFMC 95 CG/ SCSRT wrote:

I forgot to mention last week I started picking the first tomatoes. I labeled all the plants, but the supposedly weatherproof writing has worn off so I'm not even sure what I planted this year, although I think I wrote down the varieties somewhere. At least the Yellow Pear is easy to recognize. Guess it
doesn't really matter.
Anyway so we have a few tomatoes, the green beans are tailing off, the
zucchini of course is exploding, and it looks like the cucumbers are fruiting at last. I have a lot more basil than I expected, so I should pick and freeze it soon...I should do that, but I don't know if I'll get around to it or not. We spent the weekend at home so I got a lot of chores done. Even made a start at clearing the weeds out of the front garden; I took 4 wheelbarrows full of grass out. It's barely a dent but you have to start somewhere. There's not
much blooming out there now - just a few daylilies, some coreopsis,
gaillardia, Shasta daisies and a few roses. I saw one lonely liatris stalk too. I used to have two beautiful clumps of them but gophers ate them over the
We reset all the automatic sprinklers to come on less often, trying to save water, and I suspect that (and the weeds) are why there's no flowers. I also cut back on the veggie garden as I've mentioned, so we are using about half the water we did last summer. It hasn't been quite as hot this year but you can tell the front is dry. Well...I know it's necessary...and I had too much garden to take care of anyway...but I'm still doing a little bit of mourning
for all the flowers.
Husband and I both agree that this winter we'll cough up whatever is necessary to have the good tree people trim our front sycamores. I am so unhappy with what happened to the back trees. They'll recover eventually but sheesh. The
front ones are so big now that they overhang all the walkways, which I
wouldn't mind except every bird in the neighborhood is living there. That would be fine too if they didn't poop so much. It's almost as bad as the
chicken coop.
Lots of folks around us, especially to the east, got big thunderstorms and rain (almost < inch!) over the weekend. We got nothing. I see big clouds out
there right now so I'm hoping, hoping, please let it rain on me!


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Island Jim
Willamette Valley
44.99 N 123.04 W
Elevation 148'
Hardiness Zone 8/9
Heat Zone 5
Sunset Zone 6
Minimum 0 F [-15 C]
Maximum 86 F [30 C]

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  • References:
    • Mid-summer garden
      • From: "Johnson, Cyndi D Civ USAF AFMC 95 CG/SCSRT" <cyndi.johnson@edwards.af.mil>

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