Skip to comments.WEEKLY GARDEN THREAD VOLUME 18 MAY 3, 2013
Posted on 05/03/2013 1:37:50 PM PDT by greeneyes
The Weekly Gardening Thread is a weekly gathering of folks that love soil, seeds and plants of all kinds. From complete newbies that are looking to start that first potted plant, to gardeners with some acreage, to Master Gardener level and beyond, we would love to hear from you.
This thread is non-political, although you will find that most here are conservative folks. No matter what, you wont be flamed and the only dumb question is the one that isnt asked.
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At this rate there could be a repeat of the year without summer which was in the early 1900's. I did get some beets planted, but I don't think they will sprout in weather like this.
Meanwhile the indoors stuff is begging to go outside, if only it would warm up enough. I am just considering this a great learning opportunity on the way to growing and processing my own food. A great challenge to help us learn how to deal when things aren't perfect.
Have a great weekend. God Bless.
Pinging the List.
Just change your name to quick post.LOL
Models indicate the weather might do something similar (albeit a bit warmer) again next week.
Hope those models are wrong wrong wrong.
We might get FROST tonight. Unheard of for the first week in May. Thankfully I haven’t put any tomatoes or peppers out yet or actually planted any warm season stuff at all. We’ll have to cover our blueberries tonight and bring in all the stuff on the driveway that’s waiting to go in the garden.
I have 3 256 divot trays of rice seedlings now. I’m guessing about 80-90% germination. So far I’ve started the Hmong Sticky and the Carolina Gold. Those have to go out next weekend regardless of the weather.
Stuff is really growing great in my little balcony herb garden. Now every omelet, every salad, and every sauce has real, freshly cut herbs. Gourmet Dining Al Fresco!
I did lose a New Mexico pepper plant to the wind last night, and one of the tobacco plants took some damage.
Sounds soooo similar to my week. LOL
I just received the packet of rice seeds this week. I will be using Milk Jugs to plant them in, but I have stuff further up the list to start. Problem is, I have run out of room for starts due to not transplanting because of the weather.
It kinda reminds me of Lucy and Ethel and the assembly line back up where the started putting the candy in their mouth, cause there were too many on the belt.
We transplanted everything from the little greenhouse to the raised beds on April 30th. It was the first day the soil was dry enough to not glob up into mud balls.
Then yesterday, we decided to cover all the plants from the potential freeze or light snow.
We used 5 inch pots, wrapped in plastic grocery store bags, over the top of each tomato and pepper. I then put a rock on the top of the pots to hold them from blowing off. The beds are protected via a pvc pipe framework covered in bird netting, so the gardens now have little ghost prisoners inside.
Cold today and expecting light snow tonight. A chilly weekend ahead. I have a few plants left over in case I lose some. Hope I can give them away next week.
A FRiend from Cumming GA exchanged some paprika seeds via mail with me last year. Two of these little wonders are out there, fighting back against the Yankee weather aggression.
I really love it when I can just snip some fresh herbs to go into whatever I am cooking.
Saw the ‘ping’ and thought “what? it’s Friday already?” Evidently so!!
I did get my brand new, very small (36 sq ft) garden hacked out of the front pasture Wednesday. The sod/grass is off, now need to dig the soil out deeper and amend it with compost, etc. Saturday or Sunday is looking like the day. My SIL planted her stuff earlier (2-3 weeks ago) & most of her plants have brown ‘cold burn’ spots so I’m not feeling too bad about not having planted yet .... still pretty chilly around here.
My garage light setup resembles that Lucy & Ethel episode. Even more tonight when stuff that’s gone out on the driveway in transplant cups has to come back inside for a night and possibly a day.
This too shall pass.
I got some Bonita sweet potato slips from Cooks Garden. Haven’t gotten them yet but they’re on order.
Have a basket at Jungs and another one at RHShumway. They’ve both got their specialty herb plants on sale and I’m going to get some Bush Porto Rico sweet potato slips from Shumway as well. I’m thinking of the Arbequina Olive at Jungs. And a couple bottles of Algoflash for good measure. I’ll probably hit ‘checkout’ on this stuff tonight or tomorrow. I just hate to get stuff if we’re going to have cold and rainy weather for a while. Mind you, I am NOT complaining about the rain. Not. Not. Not.
I’m just afraid the weather pattern will dry out like it did in ‘11 and we won’t have rain again till September. And daily temps will be triple digit. Hope not!
Yes, the weather has definitely blessed procrastinators like me with great excuses for not moving more expeditiously forward. LOL.
I sit on my little balcony, sipping a nice pinot grigio, reading War and Peace and listening to Classical Music as i eat my Gourmet food prepared with real fresh herbs.
All this on an income half the official poverty level.
Life is only good if YOU make it that way.
Yes, I am concerned about drought too. The irony is we have had too much rain to get the swimming pool set up to store the rain for use this summer.
The ground needs to be leveled, and it’s been too wet to bring in a load of dirt or do anything like that.
So true. Attitude and effort mixed with persistence can make a big difference.
My granny’s chief cook in the cafe used to say that the lumps in the Mashed Potatoes are there to break up the monotony.
Whenever my kids used to complain too much, I would just tell them that life’s challenges are there for the same reason that lumps in the Mashed Potatoes are there: A break in monotony.LOL
I planted a few squash and cucumber seeds last week thinking we wouldn’t have anymore below freezing weather. Fortunately the plants haven’t come up yet. Our latest frost on record is May 6 or 7 but this has been a year of broken records both highs and lows (Texas Panhandle).
LOL...I like that!
If that is the case, I can proudly say that my life is NOT monotonous.
I am wondering if anyone in the forum has encountered this problem and how you dealt with it. Thank you for any information you can provide.
Yeah, the wind was something. It knocked some size-y limbs in into the garden. The garage temp was 36 this morning so hoping everything is fine outside. Blah, I’m hiding inside from the loony neighbors and all their hoopla today. I want to get out the new tomatoes and peppers this weekend. They’re a little small since I had to restart them after the hail and flooding a few weeks ago but this is May for goodness sakes! There are several volunteer tomatoes here and there so if the weather doesn’t start cooperating, it may come down to them.
The old hanging baskets are falling apart so I broke down and bought two new ones. Yikes, prices have gone up. Will plant them with herbs. I’m still waiting on the herb garden to see what’s coming up so it can be filled in. There’s another big pot that is waiting for the corner of the porch to get cleaned off so it can have a new home and start some herbs.
I finally noticed, duh, the lettuce mixes have such an interesting variety that I’d like to somehow plant enough to really see what’s what, let it go to seed and then plant some varieties separately. Just a learning experiment.
I thought this year’s garden plan would be the best use of space but the other day re-mapped for next year with narrower paths and wider rows. There’s still one corner that is inaccessible but can’t stand that it’s vacant.
Various squash and melons.
Other side of the squash patch.
First Snapdragon bloom.
Tomatoes on the Topsy-Turvy.
Some kind of bug. Any ideas?
First Sunflower bloom.
I watched the darndest little drama unfold in my garden earlier this week. I watched a wasp land on one of my Zinnias and crawl under the flower petals. He must have done something under there, because in about 5 seconds this green caterpillar came rushing out of the middle of the flower. The wasp in turn rushed up to the top of the flower and ate that whole caterpillar right then and there! I found out later it was probably a Paper Wasp. Apparently, plants put out some kind of distress odor when they are being attacked by caterpillars. These wasps sniff around for the scent, and when they find it, know just what to do. Amazing.
It has been generally warm enough to plant for 3 weeks here, but we have had 2 late frosts in that time. One was a real hard freeze. Got all my pears, plums and apricots.
Blackberries are blooming, strawberries are just beginning to put on, early crop of figs looks good,
I just planted 2 cherry bushes today. Have no idea if they will produce here, but am hoping, My brother’s girl friend ordered them for me with some of her trees.
Wheat crop (seed wheat) is still very much in doubt. It will produce but extreme dry winter conditions will limit production and the late freeze might have damaged some of the heads. We had no carry-over last year so we really need the production to take care of our normal customers.
We had a cold front again yesterday and last night. It came close, but did not freeze last night. I do not remember ever having a frost in May.
Hope your weather begins to be cooperative soon.
Best regards my FRiend.
Spit watermelon seeds into that spot. ;)
Well, here in Alpharetta, Ga. it has been unseasonably cool and plenty wet, especially just when time’s available to get outside.
After a late start planting last Spring, I swore to be more timely this go round. So here I am overflowing with seedlings started weeks ago. Many of the beer cups I used are starting to become root bound, so come whatever the weather short of monsoon, stuff’s going in this weekend. The potatoes and tomatoes already in the ground have looked so lonely. Plus I can tell my wife’s tolerance in my turning her sunroom into a potting shed is getting old.
As an amusing aside, yesterday she likened summer gardening to childbirth. She’s qualified to say anything she likes after 4 boys and a girl. Anyway, some time after giving birth, the pain and discomfort of all those months seem to vanish, so much so that after a sufficient time has passed, one might even consider doing it all over again. She says that’s why we don’t do a fall garden. We first need to forget all the summer’s prolonged hard work that seems to hit us around September each year.
Lastly, I ran upon a new term the other day, which was used in one of those trendy backpacking/outdoor catalogs that portrays the models pictured in some adventurous, planet saving, activity we mere journeymen can only dream about. So I’m wondering if we have any “EXTREME GARDENERS” here. Quite a fetching title. And I do wonder if this is something a conservative can possibly even hope to aspire to someday?
Indeed it has been a record breaking week for many locations throughout the USA. If any of them were warming trends, I missed the reports.
The USDA just reclassed our region from 5 to 6, but I am wondering if maybe they got the direction backwards. Maybe they should have classified it as a 4? LOL
Garden is looking good. I have a couple of almost tennis ball size tomatoes on two plants. My lettuce and turnips are growing OK. Strawberry plants were a bust. Just a few berries this year. Still very dry here.
My sister in the San Antonio area lost her entire garden to a hail storm this past Monday. No big hail, but it tore the entire area up and the trees have no leaves. They did get 5” of rain before the hail broke the gage.
Me too. I have lived in interesting, challenging, and unusual at times situations. A good life - but definitely not monotonous.LOL
Our lawn never did recover from '11. Then we had construction last summer tearing it up and meaning we couldn't water and left hills and valleys. Recently, we've had a couple rains that have caused flooding and the water washed gullies through the yard. Now it's nothing but holes, bare spots and weeds so it's going to need a lot of pampering this summer. The weed and feed we put out a while back didn't seem to do anything so it's hand pulling. It's going to need some major pampering this year and a few more.
Indeed! i could write a book!
I have not heard of this issue before. I’ll be interested to hear if anyone else has too.
Yaaaaahoooo. Thanks for the pictures. I have been starved by the weather so far from seeing such wonderful sights. Thanks for sharing these.
Right back at you. Hope your weather gives you a break this year, and straightens out enough to get out a good crop.
LOL. I could be an EXTREME GARDENER if I wasn’t soooo lazy.LOL.
That’s too bad. Rotten Rotten weather. Does she have some back up plants for the garden, or will she have to start over from scratch?
I could too, if only my memory wasn’t so bad.LOL
We are trying. Have 2 dryland plots, one looks good but could sure use a drink, the other looks like it will make about 1/2 the normal crop. A third field is under a pivot sprinkler and looks better, hoping no frost damage.
Local crop insurance agent told me he expects 10% of the planted crop to be harvested. The rest will be disastered.
Last year we made 1/2 normal crop and had some carryover in bins. Barely had enough to cover our old customers.
I do spend time in my orchard and garden. That produce is not for sale, but for consumption by family and friends.
Forget grassy lawn. Plant edibles.
If you’re going to pamper, pamper something you get something out of.
Google a pic of ‘Squash Vine Borer’ and compare to the bug on your zucchini plant. Either that or some sort of stink/squash bug.
my dear husband it busy building a walk in cooler and meat shop...for our use, and family/friends....he'll build a smoker later...
Welllll, while most of you guys had problems due to cold weather or wind or family obligations, I was very busy. When one doesn’t know much about gardening, one has to get educated and I’m on that path.
I got bags of potting soil mix, had two that size already and had two bigger ones already. I planted seeds in these suckers and put them in the garden in blank spots. One was baby carrots and my mentor, Johnny, says I likely can’t eat them as they will bolt. Sooo, I look up “bolt”. Now that I know what it is, I’ll tell them not to do that.
I planted in those bags: Little Finger Carrots, Alpine Strawberries, Hot Jalapeno Pepper Medium Hot, Armenian Pale Green Cucumber, Gourmet Italian Onion, and a type of small Acorn Squash.
Then, I considered my situation. Not much real dirt space and Ive managed to get some plants in there but Ive got a lower back problem and hate digging in dirt. Better to use those bags and let the plants grow in the bags sitting in the dirt garden part (call the bags instant “raised beds”).
Have lots of wood raised deck space. Conclusion was that large wood deck space has to grow food. Looked for ways to do that and settled on Tomato Trellis Garden on Wheels. I ordered two of them yesterday. Each one will hold two regular size tomato plants by the time they grow to full size. That also gives me the support for the tomatoes as they grow, as the trellis part is in sections and as the plant needs another section, just stick it in the top of the ones already there. The trellis goes to four feet high. You can look at this thing here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004NBZDNG/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Ive already bought the potting mix for the two of them. If these are good, Ill get two more next spring. That wood deck is going to grow food. I also got a little gizmo to help me plant small seed. Some are so tiny, I manage to get a glop of them in one little space. Have to fix that and think this gizmo will do it. Also got some seed starting mix and I didnt know that existed.
The veggies Ive already planted are doing well except for the lettuce its just not growing right - hard to tell any is growing now. I think maybe the dirt in those two planters on the ground doesnt have whats needed in it. Ill take that out next spring and put potting soil mix in there.
Ill keep reading and learning until I know what Im doing.
I saw the pictures of the live oak trees and they were as bare as any post oak tree in the dead of winter. Piles of green leaves that were 20X20 and three feet tall.
Lettuce, turnip, squash, cucumber, melon plants all beat to a pulp. Some of those may come back from the center, but all the vines are gone.
Sometimes, that can be a GOOD thing.
Wow. I haven’t seen a walk in cooler since Granny sold her business.
Here in DFW got a bit cold last night too. Didn’t chance it so I covered up the ‘matoes with the old blanket plus the pepper plant. The arugula lettuce is doing ok. Last 2-3 weeks we had clouds galore but very little moisture from the sky. Hope that changes soon—don’t want to go into the scorcher summers here with dry ground from the get-go.
Thanks for the link. I just got in a Miles Kimbal catalogue, and it has pots that are designed to go over 2x4 deck railing. Looks great for herbs, lettuce and spinach etc.
My experiment so far shows mushroom compost superior for little gem lettuce and spinach-I think it was bloomsdale spinach to the top soil bag.
Pretty soon, you’ll be the expert here. LOL
I’ll just say a prayer for all those who are gardening and ask for a bountiful harvest this year. Amen.
It's certainly going to delay the harvest, though. It makes the peppers angry to get chilled.
The winds were harsh enough that the catz were right next to me all night long. It's down to gusts of 20MPH now.
Yeh, like I get to enjoy my favorite movies just like it was the first time viewing.LOL
Also hard to hold grudges if you can’t remember! Ha Ha Ha!
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