What Did You Do In The Garden?

flowerbug

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finally was able to get outside today for a few hours to start getting caught up on weeding again. the angry bee was not around and so i finished up the north garden as much as i could get done. i'm sure there are plenty of weeds still hiding under the bean plants but they can stay there until i notice them.

there were plenty of weeds in there before and they all were buried last year, i knew that the treatment i gave most of them was sufficient to keep them from coming back up too easily, but you never know. so this year it has been a relief that i've not had the grasses coming back up or much of the oxalis. purselane is the most common weed and then the mouse-eared chickweed and birdsfoot trefoil are both trying to come back up in some places where they've had chances to drop plenty of seeds over the years. still it isn't too bad that i can weed the edges with the creeping thyme and scrape most of the rows in a few hours time.

i know i shouldn't say this, but i've not seen a rabbit or a groundhog in a month or more and not that much deer activity in the north garden either. i should manage to get a decent dry bean crop from there and with the Purple Dove beans just getting going on flowering i should have some edible fresh eating beans from there too if i want to pick them.

my normal morning routine has still been to try to get out early enough to pick off tomato worms and Japanese Beetles. not finding any worms the past few days and only a dozen or two of the JBs. i think it was so cool the other night that they all stayed put because i went out to pick the bugs and there weren't hardly any. i was hoping that perhaps they were done (ha), but nope, just a break for that day. the next day i couldn't get out so today was after a skipped day and not too bad - i thought it was going to be worse...
 

Zeedman

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DW & I harvested Emerite beans, Swiss chard, okra, and Sierra Madre yardlong beans today. I also harvested the first dry seed of the year, from the MN 150 cowpea. Several Cleota Pink tomatoes are nearly ripe, and are making me drool... but the first 3 are dedicated for seed saving. Too bad you can't both eat & save seed from tomatoes, as you can with peppers.

As they generally do at this point in the season, the mice are rapidly becoming more aggressive, in spite of numerous traps already placed. All of the yardlong beans which touched the ground were gnawed off at the ends. :somad Still more damage on the soybeans too, so put out another 12 traps - including several rat traps - and changed bait. As much as I would like to water the home gardens, I've put it off until tomorrow, since irrigation will trigger the traps & require re-baiting.

In the rural garden, there is finally light at the end of the tunnel. DW & I have now weeded & mulched nearly everything. We cleaning up two of the beans (Mr. Claude Parker, pole & Giant Red Tarka, bush) and will continue weeding beans tomorrow. The only things left to weed after that will be soybeans, and since they are vigorous & flowering in spite of the weed pressure, we may just cut the weeds short around them, to keep them from seeding.

Yesterday I mowed all of the areas where crops failed, and have begun tilling under the weeds in those areas. Some of those areas will be transitioned to Fall crops; peas & kohlrabi for starters. I don't usually have a Fall garden, but I hate seeing bare dirt, and when life deals you lemons...
 

flowerbug

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...
Yesterday I mowed all of the areas where crops failed, and have begun tilling under the weeds in those areas. Some of those areas will be transitioned to Fall crops; peas & kohlrabi for starters. I don't usually have a Fall garden, but I hate seeing bare dirt, and when life deals you lemons...
if anything a cover crop. buckwheat, winter wheat, winter rye, cowpeas, turnips, radishes... :) i'd like to get some buckwheat planted in the pea/garlic garden but there are still peas growing in a few spots and i don't want to pull them out. i guess i could plant around them... today will be a good day to do that too since i've mostly finished up the gardens outside the fence. mowing first though. ugh. i hate mowing... haha...

it does feel so nice when you finally get a garden cleared of weeds. :)
 

digitS'

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Too bad you can't both eat & save seed from tomatoes, as you can with peppers.
Do you feel that fermenting tomatoes for seed collection is safest, @Zeedman ?

I seem to get away with just careful cleaning of the cutting board, placing seed on a paper towel and moving it to a sunny location for several weeks. A somewhat experienced beer and wine maker, I would still be anxious about doing it proper if I was fermenting tomatoes.

Fortunately, out of about 20 varieties, inventory tells me that I only need seed from 2 tomatoes this year. Nothing else will be 5 years old or older in 2021. (Confession: I have one that has zero saved seed and it's one of DW's favorites. In fact, it's the first large tomato that she even decided that she liked 🙄 .)

Steve
 

flowerbug

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pea picker! :)

i hope i can get out today to pick some beans for fresh eating/steaming.

other than that it is another day of some weeding. warming up again so won't be overdoing it.
 

flowerbug

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i had some old leftover onion seeds and some buckwheat seeds so i planted them in the pea and garlic patch. there's still a few pea plants finishing up in there that i left. i have no idea how many of the old onion seeds will sprout/grow but i guess we'll find out between this fall and next spring. the seeds are from red onions that i harvested and some kelsae giant onions. probably also some cross-breeds in there too. if i actually get enough small bulbs to form they will get lifted and stored for the winter so i can replant them in the spring. if there are a lot of them i'm sure we'll eat some as green onions.

last year my mid-summer planting of buckwheat was almost all eaten by some creature (either raccoon, groundhog or chipmunks) so i am hoping i can get some to go this year. i don't have that many seeds so it would be nice to get more back than what i planted for a change. if i don't it isn't too hard to source the seeds here in bulk but i just like to be self-sufficient if i can.
 

digitS'

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I searched for information on the variety of white onion used commercially for spring sets. What I could learn several years ago was that Ebenezer was commonly grown.

We are just about to the time when I have tried to start Walla Walla Sweet onions to overwinter. After a few trials, I decided that it was too risky. One spring, there was only a few Walla Walla plants that bolted to seed rather than forming bulbs. The final spring that I tried a late August sowing, all of the plants bolted in the spring!

I think that it had to do with winter temperatures and snow cover. With a greenhouse, and the opportunity to start seed in its more temperate environment, outdoor sowing didn't seem to be worth the risk. There are onion varieties that should work for sets, @flowerbug , and this sure seems like the right time to try them.

Steve
 

flowerbug

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I searched for information on the variety of white onion used commercially for spring sets. What I could learn several years ago was that Ebenezer was commonly grown.

We are just about to the time when I have tried to start Walla Walla Sweet onions to overwinter. After a few trials, I decided that it was too risky. One spring, there was only a few Walla Walla plants that bolted to seed rather than forming bulbs. The final spring that I tried a late August sowing, all of the plants bolted in the spring!

I think that it had to do with winter temperatures and snow cover. With a greenhouse, and the opportunity to start seed in its more temperate environment, outdoor sowing didn't seem to be worth the risk. There are onion varieties that should work for sets, @flowerbug , and this sure seems like the right time to try them.

Steve
the seeds were harvested from onions i grew here from sets and also some of them may have come from cross-breeds i already had grown before. i'd been keeping the seeds to use and to give away but finally think they are all too old and should just use them up or at least they can become worm food in the garden where i planted them.

i think you have to get the right variety but also you have to get the tiny bulbs lifted, suitably dried out and then into storage inside before the frosts get at them. for some varieties the cold will tell them to flower the next season, but also if the bulb used as a set is too big. at least that is where my state of onion set knowledge is at right now. :)

i'm willing to be surprised by how many seeds actually sprout and grow. i put down a few thousand seeds. if i get a few dozen onions out of them i'll be happy. and of course if i get onion flowers too i'll also be happy (next summer). :)
 

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