Saturday, May 31, 2008

First garden problems

My garden is looking really nice. I see a lot of potential as most things are off to a good and healthy start. However, I am encountering some problems that I'm trying to deal with today.

First of all, you may remember that my original cucumber seedlings died when I set them out. So I bought 4 new plants at the nursery and set them out a few weeks ago. Two of those four have now died and the other two look like this. The main stem has turned white and gotten brittle. It looks like it is dying. Oddly, though, the leaves at the top look really healthy. I'm not sure about the problem. It may be "damping off" due to soil that doesn't drain well, lots of water lately, and soil too high in nitrogen. I'm afraid I'll lose my cucumbers again. I could replant them or plant something else there, but I need to figure out the problem and do something about it or I'll just keep having the same problem.

In this bed I have planted a row of onions on the far left and then two rows of bush beans. (Yes, experienced gardeners will point out that beans and onions shouldn't be planted together. I discovered this *after* I'd planted them all. Lesson learned for next time.) So far they don't seem to be disagreeing with each other. However, my bean seedlings do show a few signs that something is nibbling on the leaves. It is small and since we have a fence, I tend to think it is some kind of insect. I couldn't see any when I looked, but the damage could be happening at night time. I'm not sure what to do. I think I may plants some marigolds in the middle of the beans as a first step.

Yesterday I discovered that this grape tomato plant was bent over at a 90 degree angle. Not sure whether to blame wind, birds, or children. Anyway, I used twine to stake it upright. Then last night we had a gulley-washer of a storm. This morning it had fallen over again. I restaked it, tying it higher on the trellis and hoping it'll snap out of it, but I'm not too positive. We went to the farmer's market and bought another grape tomato plant just in case this one doesn't pull through.

But a lot in the garden is looking really good. For example:

My Seeds of Change Sucrine lettuce seedings (second succession planting)

Two zucchini plants

This bed of potato plants (these are Red Norlands and my Irish Cobblers look just as good in the bed opposite these - not pictured)

Our strawberries (this is just one of many plants that are bursting with berries about to ripen)

and blueberries (this is one of four plants full of blueberries that are turning blue).

Today's local weather:
High temp 83 F
Low temp 60 F
Sunny with 30% chance of showers

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