Last time, in the garden. (June 27)
This morning, in the garden.
(If you're keeping garden notes and photographs and want to share it with the rest of us, do leave a comment with a link so that we may visit your garden too!)
It's been two weeks since the last garden check in, and I feel like a sad broken record with the same reports of So Much Rain! So Many Bugs! But alas, that's what happening out there. SO much rain, I do wish we could blow some westerly where it's truly needed, for it's really no longer 'needed' here. Some sun is greatly needed. (I think it's coming soon.)
And the bugs. Well, I do think we managed to save the potatoes from the leafhoppers which was my worry last time we checked in. (Fingers and toes all crossed.) And I'm being so vigilant about the squash bugs, which seem to be in larger numbers this year than I've ever seen before. It's a mix of hand picking the eggs and bugs each morning, as well as sprinkling a little bit of diatomaceous earth around the base of the plants, and adding some kaolin clay to the leaves. I don't love using anything, and would prefer to just companion plant, and better the soil (the bugs aren't interested in perfectly healthy plants, right?), but there reaches a point where you just don't mess with my squash without a little push back and I feel comfortable in the relative safety of these few chosen things - for us, our bees, and the plants.
I found some garden notes from last year that reminded me to not put straw mulch around those squash plants, for it gives the squash bugs a place to hide. Well, the secret to keeping garden notes is that one must then read them too. Oops. Next year... and next year, I'll be planting so much more nasturtium amongst the squash, for I'm convinced that the squash plants that did get a border of them are faring much better against those buggers.
I've put in some second - and third - plantings this week of things like lettuce, spinach, and radishes (the pickled radishes were so tasty, I want more!). Our peas reached the very happy point last week when the trellises were thick, and just the perfect hiding spaces for little ones who want to plunk themselves down and eat sugar snap peas. So good. The peas have a little bit more life left, but those will soon be leaving us. Broccoli and cauliflower are coming out of the garden every day, and entering our mouths and the freezer by the quart full. In addition those treats, and all the lettuce, we are eating (and freezing) a great deal of kale and swiss chard, which is growing in such an abundance that I'm filling up grocery bags full for anyone who wanders by. And beets! Oh my goodness, I snuck some little beets this week because we just couldn't wait any longer. They were the most tender and delicious little things, and I'm so glad I planted as much as I did. Soon I'll be able to dive into them without hesitancy.
And soon we will be full of berries for really the first time since we've been here. Just outside of this fenced area, we put in rows of raspberries, blackberries and twenty blueberry plants. And nearby, the newly added winterberry and elderberry are looking hopeful for years to come. We are coming up upon our third anniversary of being in this house - what a delight to see those first plantings now looking so good, and my goodness, producing fruit! A summer delight, indeed.