Sunday, May 21, 2017

What a difference a week makes

In the last post the weather was warm and beautiful.  This week was cold with temperatures back down in the lower 40s at night and lower 50s during the days.  The rain fell for days.  The wind blew and some places got hail.  Thankfully nothing of mine was damaged by any bad weather but still the monster tomato plants have not been planted at Terra Nova Gardens.  They are starting to show the stress of not being out in the real garden soil.
I did manage between rain storms to mow my vacant lot and get enough grass clippings to cover one bed.  The time was right to plant the next planting of sweet corn.  I hope it will be alright as I had to just poke it into the ground in the mud.  Then the next two days after that it rained.  The first planting of sweet corn is up about six inches and looks great.  Now I really have to get the pathways mulched and the fence up.

The garden gifts just keep coming.  Yesterday I helped a friend move some furniture to prepare for her moving to Ohio and she gave me about a dozen steel posts and a post driver.  Both were things I was going to buy this week.  It will certainly help with keeping the garden costs down.  Much of the materials used in my garden has been given to me.
I did manage to get the worst pathway cleaned up.  It didn't take as long as I thought.  The beauty about using carpet for weed control is that when the weeds make their way up through the carpet, it can just be turned over and weeding is done.  I pulled out all the chicken wire fencing because it was toast.  I've discovered that chicken wire rusts very quickly and in just three years it needs replaced.  I'm replacing it with a heavier steel wire that should last much longer.   So much to do and little time to do it.  
The strawberries are gorgeous this year.  They are loaded with blossoms and if I can keep the wildlife from getting to them, I should have a great harvest.  They haven't filled up the entire bed just yet but after the deer devastation two years ago leaving five plants out of thirty, their recovery is amazing.  If I can just stay ahead of the weeds and wild life, it should be a great year.
  This bed will be the green peppers.  Last year my peppers didn't produce any peppers.  They just got real wrinkly leaves and didn't get any peppers on them.  I found after research that is caused by lack of calcium.  This bed has always not produced much in the last couple years.  It has been beefed up with bags of manure compost and will have lime spread around the pepper plants when they are planted.  Garden line has calcium that is good for plants.  Hopefully, it will correct the condition that I had last year.  I should have about 12 plants in this bed which will be way more than I need.

Last year toward the end of the year a make shift vegetable stand was set out in front of my garden for the extra produce to be given away.  It all disappeared every over night when I set it out so this year the stand will be bigger and better.  Some have asked about why I don't sell it.  My answer is too much bother.  If I do that I'd have to get a permit from the city and add it to my income for taxes.  If I didn't, one neighbor to complain would put me in a fix with the city so it's not worth the risk in my humble opinion.  Besides, it has opened a door for me to get to know the entire neighborhood.  

The potatoes are doing really good this year.  The harvest should be about the end of July.  I've acquired a free refrigerator and still have an old chest freezer that I'm going to see if it still works.  This year I'll be storing up a little more garden produce for the winter months.  Unfortunately, not much will be eaten by grandson and daughter.  They are not so much into home cooked meals.

That's it for this time.  I'll be back soon.  In the mean time get outside and enjoy the Spring because hot summer is coming.


  1. Our weather has been similar. So odd to be planting in mud at times. So far the serious storms have missed us. Had some crazy wind one night though that roughed things up a bit. Your free produce stand is a great idea. We have some food pantries in town that accept fresh produce donations and I usually set up a little free produce spot in the kitchen at work. Nice to have it go to use.
    Always improving your layout. The carpet pieces are a good trick. I don't have any spaces that large. We got some free wood chips this spring from the city pile where landscapers take their chipped trees and they put the chipped Christmas trees from the collection. A nice new layer has really made our paths good especially with all the rain this spring. Happy gardening!

  2. GonSS, Thanks for commenting. Our weather here has finally dried up and allowed me to be in the garden every day this week. There's supposed to be some rain come through this afternoon but I haven't seen any thing yet. I use wood chips over the carpet in some areas of the garden but despite my best efforts to get the city to dump wood chips on my garden driveway, they haven't. I'm not sure why they don't follow up when they say they will. So at $20 a cubic yard, which fits in the back of my truck just right, it isn't all that expensive.

    It looks to be one of the best years for my garden but I have a 10 day vacation coming up and it's never a good thing to leave a garden unattended that long. I'm hoping to have some automatic water set up to help with watering the sensitive plants like tomatoes and green peppers before I leave.

    Have a great day in the garden.