kale

kale
The overwintered kale is sprouting!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Garden Update, Slug Eggs, Garlic Scapes and more!

A lovely garlic scape bouquet!
Finally, summer has arrived. And with it comes the lovely reminder that heat-loving veggies like tomatoes and zucchini simply bask in warm temperatures and plenty of sunshine. In fact, they, along with the beans have actually doubled in size over the past 3 days - crazy!! I'm so glad the pole beans are finally climbing - I was worried that they wouldn't be able to shake the non-stop slug damage. In fact, I've reseeded in the empty spots along the A-frame trellis and pole bean teepees to make sure that we have plenty of summer snap beans - my favourite summer treat!

It's also not too late to put in more bush beans for a late Aug harvest.. even fall peas should be sown soon and you'll be able to enjoy a late season bumper crop of tender, sweet peas. Yum! The only problem is finding space in the garden for them!

I also have fresh cuke transplants ready for transplanting and more sweet corn (a white heirloom). I'm also trying Molokhia, a middle eastern super-green. My mother-in-law makes a cooked chicken and rice dish with Molokhia, but I've never tried growing it before. It typically takes about 2 months until harvest, so I started some seeds indoors. Now, I just need to find the time to plant them and enough space!

Slug eggs!!
The straw bale gardens are growing slowly, but steadily. In fact, I'm not completely sold on this method. The straw dries out very quickly, wicking the moisture from the soil/compost pockets where my tomatoes are planted. Plus, I've discovered many many clusters of slug eggs in the straw!! Argh.. I pulled apart a few of my old bales to use on the potatoes - the tubers will grow into the straw and I'll be able to harvest soil-free tubers.. but, there are so many slugs in the half rotted straw bales that  I may not bother with the straw. Yuck! And, as I pulled apart the bales to use around the potato plants, I noticed these slug eggs.. not a great photo, but you can tell from the one with my hand just how small these eggs are. They resemble tiny crystal balls. And they will tell you the future of your garden - slug damaged crops!!

Anyhoo.. I hope you'll join me again this Sunday, July 10th for The Weekend Gardener 10 to 1 pm - now 3 hours of garden fun every Sunday!! Thanks so much for all the kind e-mails and comments about the show - they're very appreciated.

We're going to talk to the wonderful Craig, the North Carolina tomato man this Sunday, as well as Carla from Halifax Seed. She's a good friend and an expert on a wide variety of garden topics. This weekend, we'll cover pests - what pests are in the garden now and what we can do about them - naturally, of course.

Also, we'll talk daylilies with Nancy from Red Land Gardens in PEI and Lorraine Flanigan, the Toronto garden expert will tell us about her new garage rooftop garden! All this and so much  more..

Happy Gardening!

I love calendula.. so cheerful and pretty! Also great in salads





A Swiss chard from last autumn bolting

Sage borders the entrance to our garden - just glorious!

More sage..

Even closer.. 

The bees love sage too - ready for landing!

Could he crawl in any deeper??

Ready to go in the garden

Roots - escaping! 

Molokhia ready for the summer sun


Last night's salad - over a dozen types of greens.. sigh.. 

6 comments:

  1. Oh dear. I just completely covered my plot in half rotted hay bales. I have noticed slug damage on my pole beans for the first time but assumed the slugs wouldn't like the scratchy hay on their tender bodies! I was also hoping it would shade the ground from the intense sun and prevent it from drying out so quickly. Any suggestions for another mulch?

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  2. Hi Vervacious! Thanks for your comment! I don't know how close you are to the ocean, but seaweed, especially the grassy type works great. The salt in the seaweed prevents the slugs from munching on your plants. Shredded leaves also work well, but slugs could be a problem. Grass clippings also work well and a 1-inch thick layer will help lock in moisture, but shouldn't attract too many slugs.. fingers crossed!

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  3. 1st bush beans big enough to eat today.They are sooo good.The variety is Provider. Should have a decent English cucumber by the end of the week.MMmmm.

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  4. Jealous Pete!! Love the beans.. I have baby cukes coming too and have put fresh transplants in for late summer.

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  5. Sadly I am waiting for the second try at the Lebanese cukes since the slugs and/or cuke beetles got them,even though it was a sizable plant.It seems a little less tough than the others. As far as the season goes,this last stretch of fine weather has caught up and in some cases bettered last years garden at this time. Last year was early but it got cold later on.

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  6. Those salad greens look wonderful. The swiss chard would also be delicious!

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Please feel free to leave comments. I welcome your tips, questions, thoughts and ideas (and suggestions for new veggies to grow!)