Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Great day today! I started by feeding all my acid loving flowers (gardenias, camelias, azaleas, roses) with iron and soil acidifiers. Then Juna arrived to harvest cherry and plum tomatoes. When Katherine arrived I asked her to help clean up the eggplant and bell peppers. Lots of yellow and dead leaves. Then we added compost to the area around the eggplant, bell peppers and tomatoes. Juna harvested beets, carrots, green onions. Marjan arrived to help with mixing the compost into the soil and adding newspaper to the compost bin.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


113 degrees Farenheit. Whew! That's hot. I watered all the vegetables this morning in preparation, but of course, I didn't know it was going to get that hot! Most everything is fine. Some of the leaves on the tomato plants had some damage--drying out or burning up. However, the leaves were drying up little by little anyway. The rest of the vegetables are loving the heat. The bell peppers are getting red and yellow. It's about time. But most of them are a little smaller than last year, and that I expected. They were supposed to be maturing by July and continuing to bring forth peppers into October and November. Well, I don't think that's going to happen.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Lots of pruning today. The leaves on the tomato plants are fading fast. While pruning the cherry tomato plant near the workshop I found 4 very large caterpillars. Yuck! We added compost to the area where the corn was planted and the corner near the Roma tomatoes. Harvested eggplant, beefsteak tomatoes, basil, rosemary, bell peppers and arugula.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Juna and I got a lot done today. We pulled out the pea plants (powdery mildew) and the dead or dying zucchini and squash plants. I pruned the tomato plants yesterday. Picked cherry and plum tomatoes. Cultivated the earth around all the plants and watered well.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The garden is winding down. It's been a difficult year for the garden. For the past 3 years I have only see bigger and better. However, this year, the weather was colder, we had overcast mornings (the sun not showing its face until 11 a.m. or 12 p.m.) Yes, I got vegetables, but not in the abundance of former years. And now, it seems to all be coming to a close. I keep pruning the tomato plants--so many yellow and dying leaves) This didn't happen until October last year. I have planted arugula, parsnips, turnips, lettuce. I may get a good harvest. But the bell peppers are still struggling. Thinking about winter vegetables and also planting the whole garden with vetch and waiting for next spring.

Oh well, as I said before, gardening is a humbling experience. You are dealing with the forces of nature, of which we have no control. Think you have all the answers---Noooooo. You can only do the best you can. Nature decides if you will succeed or not..................

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Wednesday, Sept 8

Only two people showed up today, but that's okay. There wasn't really a lot to do today. I pruned the tomato plants, we watered and added newspaper to the compost pile. Went up on the hillside and tied up the tomato plants, cut off a lot of dead leaves, pulled out a dead squash plant. Just a lot of cleanup work.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Sprayed Neem Oil on the tulip tree, tomatoes, arugula, eggplant, peppers--everything. The tulip tree is again infested with red spider mite. I cut off all the leaves and they came back healthy, but in a very short time, the red spider mite was back. Two weeks ago I sprayed with Safer's Insecticide, but to no avail. Don't want that spreading to the vegetables and other plants and flowers.

The tomatoes, eggplant and peppers are really badly infested with whitefly. I learned something this summer. I started spraying with Neem Oil and then I bought lady bugs, lace wings and pretosium to eat the bad insects. The problem is, they are not enough. Also, after you have the beneficial insects, you can't spray with Neem Oil, because that will also kill the good insects. You have to decide--one or the other.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Saturday, September 4

One day late in posting. Two gardeners came today, but they arrived fairly late and it was in the 90s today. We watered, harvested some tomatoes, eggplant, arugula, rosemary. I pruned the zucchini and squash.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

All the tomatoes are turning red! While that's wonderful and long awaited, it would have been nicer to get them in spurts. What is one to do with so many tomatoes at one time. I have already made nine containers of tomato sauce and given away dozens of tomatoes. Lots of Roma tomatoes and cherry tomatoes, too. The peppers are starting to turn the proper colors also. I had a purple bell pepper tonight for dinner. It was delicious.

The eggplant are wonderful this year. I have harvested about 4 or 5 and there are many more on the vines. Had to put in stakes and tie up some of the eggplant. The branches are so heavy from all the eggplant.

Planted two rows of turnips and one row of Belgian endive. Watered well with Super Thrive and water.

Actually saw one more zucchini. The zucchini and squash have been a real disappointment this year. The hillside doesn't seem to be very conducive to healthy, fruitful plants. The powdery mildew covered everything earlly on, even though I sprayed Actinovate religiously. I am going to harvest all there is to harvest in the next couple of weeks. Then I'll pull out all the plants and plant winter squash. Meanwhile, I have a watermelon plant that is thriving. No watermelon yet. One can only hope.