Thursday, August 29, 2013

Enough with the Tomatoes Already!

Remember when I thought my cherry tomato plant was dying?  My limited gardening skills appear to have paid off, because it grew back even fuller than before, to the point where it was weighing down the cage on one side and I had to tie it back up straight.  I still have to trim off yellowing leaves every week, but tomatoes keep ripening at the rate of one a day or so.  I don't get to all of them before the squirrels do, but that's fine.  I have a bag of them in the fridge, and chop up a couple whenever I remember as a garnish for dinner.  I made a quiche that relied heavily on the tomatoes just to empty the bag before any started to get mushy.

I'm not the only "lucky" gardener this year.  Someone was trying to unload some lovely large tomatoes at choir this week.  I think this summer has been good for the plants.  My area has been warm, but not hot, with foggy mornings at least once a week.  I've been putting more effort into not overwatering than keeping the ground moist.

Meanwhile, the less successful Gus has gotten a second wind.  The ferns are short, but there are several of them.  The one I had expected to thrive appears to have died.  The Brussels sprouts are still puttering along and fighting whitefly, but not ready to harvest.

I had to do some major surgery on the broccoli.  Whiteflies decided they liked it better than the sprouts, there was some kind of caterpillar chewing through the leaves, and a spider took up residence.  Like the tomatoes, I cut off anything that looked diseased, sprayed it with the pesticide, dumped on some coffee grounds, and hoped for the best.  The plant may have just run its course.  I'll give it a few weeks to rebound before giving up.

While I was busy ignoring the green onions, they began to thrive.  Most critters can't eat onions, so I didn't even bother to spray them.  The green parts of some are very strong and ready to use.  The bulbs are small, but the green parts are more interesting anyway.  The only problem is that they don't replicate.  Once I pull one, it's done.

This is still my most successful garden to date, giving me hope that I am not totally inept at it.  I'll be ok with pulling out the remains when everything finally goes in a month or two (except Gus), and I'll just cover the area for the winter instead of planting decorative plants.

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