A Seed Saver's Garden

flowerbug

Garden Master
Joined
Oct 15, 2017
Messages
15,751
Reaction score
23,313
Points
417
Location
mid-Michigan, USoA
Today, due to the appearance of a bad spot, I finally got around to cutting into and starting to eat the watermelon I got on the weekend, and while it is a perfectly good watermelon, it, like the one of it's commercial brand I got before, is vaguely baffling.

I know there are seeded watermelons and there are seedless watermelons (which, nonetheless, can rarely have a seed or two). Is there such a thing as a semi-seedless watermelon?

With a seedless watermelon, which is usually triploid to get it that way. I'm used to the seeds either simply not being there, or being tiny white blebs of tissue. This isn't what I am seeing with this one. There are a LOT of seeds, but they are all (or nearly all) aborted. However, they are aborted at a MUCH later stage than one would expect from a seedless, not only are they easily visible, but many have the beginning of their seed coats actually starting to brown up at the tip. And, just like last them, there is at least one seed that appears fully formed and mature (there may be more, as I have not finished eating the melon.) The label does not claim to be seedless (unlike all of the other brands offered at that store*) but the selling sign does. I don't MIND it has seeds (for one thing, seeded melons ten to taste better). but it's odd they all straddle this line.

*the other melons offered also don't look exactly like this brand; they're a bit larger, and the stripe pattern is different, so they are presumably a different variety.)

recently when pondering this question i was reading up:

 

Pulsegleaner

Garden Addicted
Joined
Apr 18, 2014
Messages
3,277
Reaction score
6,215
Points
296
Location
Lower Hudson Valley, New York
By now, a few tomato plants in BOTH pots have flower buds, to my surprise (surprise because they are really short to have flowers).

The only problem with this is that it sort of complicates any plan to divide the tomatoes between more pots. When they were just green plants, it was pretty safe, but now that they have buds, I'm worried that any disturbance to the roots by touching the soil (even if I leave the flowering ones where they are and only try to move ones that DON'T have buds yet), might shock the plants and make them drop their buds. It's the first time in I don't know how long I might actually have a chance to get my tomatoes at the same time as everyone else here (as opposed to about two months later because I couldn't start them inside in February and had to wait for the end of cold weather to direct sow them.) and I'd prefer not to lose it.

Also saw an odd bug out there today while I was working. At first, I thought it was one of the little black and white jumping spiders we have around here. Then I noticed that, while the spiders have white stripes this had white dots, in a grid pattern. As I looked closer, I also saw the head was wrong for a spider, it looked more like it was some kind of weevil. I tried to catch it for a closer look, but, while it wasn't a jumping spider, it was certainly good a jumping, and got away. I did a little online searching, and while there IS something called a black and white jumping weevil, it doesn't look quite like what I saw. Maybe it was a stowaway. Living in a pretty affluent area, I have a lot more neighbors going abroad on business or vacations that a lot of comparable people might (and getting packages from abroad), and, while I'm sure customs does their best to make sure nothing gets in, the odd bug hiding in someone's luggage probably slips by every now and then, and a few of them make make it out of the house to the greater outside world (about ten years ago, I was SURE I saw one of those Amazonian mosquitoes with the iridescent green wings outside the sunroom. and when I was a kid, I found a small pupa next to some bananas that turned out to have a small metallic red and blue moth in it. And those are just the LIVING bugs I have seen (I've told everyone about the fiddler beetle in the frogs in Chinatown.)
 

Pulsegleaner

Garden Addicted
Joined
Apr 18, 2014
Messages
3,277
Reaction score
6,215
Points
296
Location
Lower Hudson Valley, New York
You mean......in a bin of frogs for sale?
Yes exactly. I was in a market over at the live fish and seafood counter, and they had a bin of frogs they were selling. Among those frogs, I saw a flash of something bright yellow and black. Originally, I assumed it was a wasp, but then I saw that, whatever it was, it also had a great deal of red on it's body, and wasn't really wasp shaped. After finally getting to the one employee who understood English decently (A lot of the markets in Chinatown don't bother to have servers who do, since they both assume they will and prefer to only sell to fellow Chinese people.) I got my hands on the beetle carcass and stuck it in my carrying case (I keep a little screw top pill case on my keychain for incidents like this). It got a little oxidized on the way home (so it was never as bright as when I first saw it) but it was still clear enough that, after a lot of web research, I identified it as Eupoecila inscripta , one of a group of members of the Scarab family (I know that technically isn't the beetle usually taken as the reference, but, these days, it's hard to use the word "cockchafer" without someone giggling) found in Australia (though, interestingly NOT the commoner one.

I mean, on a certain level it does make sense. If the occasional foreign seed can make it though screening, why not the occasional (deceased) foreign bug? If you go and look around the web, you can read all sort of stories of people finding assorted small critters (both deceased and alive) hiding out in their produce, from scary tales of grocery stores suddenly finding themselves dealing with a highly venomous Brazilian Wandering spider that hitched a ride on some bananas, or the poor woman in California who would up in the hospital when the flower arrangement she had gotten from South Africa turned out to be hosting an extremely potent little scorpion, to semi cute ones of people finding little frogs, lizards and geckos in there greens and taking them as pets.

I'd show a picture of the beetle, but I'm not sure the photo is still accessible (it could be on one of my online photo accounts that have since expired. And while I DO technically still have the beetle itself, the rubbing alcohol I preserved it in all leaked out, and, in it's absence, the whole THING turned black (that was the problem with finding it in a frog tank, it was too waterlogged to simply let dry like one usually would with an insect specimen.

I also have a pair of some sort of ladybug I found in some dried coriander that isn't a North American species (they're small, with black wing cases with six orange or pink spots on them.)
 

heirloomgal

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jan 17, 2021
Messages
3,544
Reaction score
11,405
Points
235
Location
Northern Ontario, Canada
Petunias that change according to the weather. Despite being called 'Honey' petunias, I think 'Peaches' somehow would be more fitting. They even have a bit of the beige that peaches have on their skins when handled a bit roughly.

A bloom born in the coolness of the night
20230615_162945 (2).jpg

And after a hot day
20230615_162941 (1).jpg
 

Pulsegleaner

Garden Addicted
Joined
Apr 18, 2014
Messages
3,277
Reaction score
6,215
Points
296
Location
Lower Hudson Valley, New York
This look right?
1687309265872.png


The side pots are still quite healthy, but now, they have also become extremely baffling. Not only have four or five more of the bindweed like sprouts showed up in the original pot, but now there are three in the right hand BIG pot, which differ both from those in the first pot and from each other. It looks like those pots must be LOADED with old seed I have sown over the years, so God knows what's going to come up from them now!
 

heirloomgal

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jan 17, 2021
Messages
3,544
Reaction score
11,405
Points
235
Location
Northern Ontario, Canada
Actually, those look pretty much like mine @Pulsegleaner. I'd say those are Honey petunias. What kind of temperatures have you been getting? 70's?

I find it so interesting that you see green in there. I looked and looked to see if I could grasp some green tones, but I can't! It's like those pictures that were everywhere in the late 80's early 90's, where it was all repeating patterns with no apparent image, until you look at it a certain way. I remember going in to those picture places with friends who would exclaim 'I see a woman in a chair!' or 'a man riding a bicycle!', and all I could see was a bunch of repeating patterns.

Pretty picture!
 

heirloomgal

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jan 17, 2021
Messages
3,544
Reaction score
11,405
Points
235
Location
Northern Ontario, Canada
For the first time in my entire life I was woken in the middle of the night, and then kept awake, by the sound of yapping, howling coyotes. By gosh, those creatures can really raise a ruckus. I had to choose between shutting the window and overheating, or staying cool and keeping it open. I went with quiet, but I still feel like a zombie today.
:caf
However, despite being in a mild fog of consciousness, I did enjoy perusing the garden rows today & seeing the plants really starting to grow. One bean plant is as tall as me. Chufa nuts are fluffing out, peas have all come up. Tomato plants have some baby tomatoes on them. If there is any crop being affected by my electric fertilizer it's those. I have NEVER had tomatoes in pots look like this, ever. And we've got wires going into every pot on a line connected to a coil. It's actually kind of wild the effect it seems to be having. The corn is a bit lopsided, with the plants - at this point - seeming a bit taller near the antennae and shorter the further away they are. But we'll see if that trend continues, could be other factors. Even the Morelle de Balbis is doing super well and fully flowering, the ground cherries already have fruit forming as do the huckleberries and wonderberries. Tzimbalo is flowering.

Challenges abound though. The main iffy crop out there is my okra. I have been overdoing it with watering for sure- learning curve - and they don't look great. I did okra in pots last time with no problems, been awhile since I put some in the ground. Aphid populations are climbing in the greenhouse because of this heat. I'm tempted to remove all the shelving (or ask DH to, easier) and just grow everything on the floor in there. It would give me more space too. Need more time convincing DH it's a good idea. ;)

I'm a bit disappointed that I was so late getting round to putting flower seeds in planters, but it's just the way it worked out. There was other stuff to do that took precedence. They're all teeny seedlings just now, but hopefully the small black planters will rush them along. I put in mostly all different types of marigold species (if Mexican Tarragon counts as a marigold). I hope they make it to seed! New Zealand spinach sprouted, along with the Pineapple flowers just last week. Late, but better late than never. All the asparagus peas are growing too. Probably too crowded, but so far nothing has died!
 

Latest posts

Top