Friday, July 5, 2013

Strange Weather We've Been Having...

It's been ages since I posted!  Blame the weather...
First, it rained for days and days and days.  Then, the rain stopped, to be followed by temperature in the low 100s!  101, 102, day after day.  So, I wasn't out in the garden much, except to water at dusk. 

A few plants suffered from the heat, but others seemed to love it.

TOMATOES: 

While Oregon Spring is the largest and healthiest plant, it's Big Beef who is producing a tremendous number of fruits.

Big Beef - July 5
Sungold is nearly ready to eat!

Sungold - July 5
The big disappointment is Cherokee Purple.  It's in a large nursery pot, more than big enough for it's use, but the plant just seems so darn fussy.  It doesn't like the heat.  It doesn't like to be wet.  It doesn't like to be dry.  The leaves are constantly curled up in protest to whatever conditions I am forcing it to endure.

Cherokee Purple - July 5
The Aces are producing, but the plants are runty.  Brandywine looks good, but not nearly as good as it's yellow sister did last year.  Medford and "Tom" (the Mystery Tomato) are doing well.  "Tom"  is staying bushy, so he'll be some sort of determinate tomato.  Determinate plants stay more compact, don't need support or staking, and usually produce all their fruit at the same time.  Ace is determinate, although my Aces last year produced all summer long.  The cherries (Large Cherry, Super Sweet) are covered with blossoms.  The Chocolate Cherry in the Topsy Turvy has a few fruits.  I am not terribly impressed with the Topsy Turvy for tomatoes.  The plants don't hang like in pictures, but are trying to turn back upwards toward the sun. 

Chocolate Cherry - July 5

Tumbler is doing well in it's ceramic pot on the deck.

Tumbler - July 5

COMPOST PILE MYSTERY:

Unless there are several different plants growing in my compost pile, I have volunteer acorn squash.  The only other choices are cucumbers or pumpkins, and this little plant looks more like an acorn squash.  I did buy and cook up a bunch of them to freeze and use as pumpkin. 
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Acorn Squash (?) - July 5

What was a compost heap is now a squash garden!  - July 5
Unfortunately the squash bugs have already found out these plants exist, and are busy finding mating.  I am not bothering to knock them into soapy water (like I did last year) as it's too much work for not a lot of result.  If I don't get any squash from these plants, or the pumpkins and gourds I have growing, I won't be bothering with them again.  The bugs will win.

I got a few tomatoes out of the compost heap too.  One is tiny, in a Topsy Turvy, the other in the recycled gate bed near "Tom."  It looks to be a cherry of some sort.  Another has potato leaves, like a Brandywine.  There is also garlic I pulled out of the asparagus bed ready to blossom!  It's fun to see what survives composting!

Compost Heap Volunteer Tomato - July 5

SQUASH, GOURDS, and PUMPKINS: 

The turban gourds, mixed decorative mini gourds (my saved seeds from last year), and miniature pumpkins look good so far.  One has started to climb the wire trellis on the fence.  I put a few Cinderella pumpkin seeds in an unused storage container and they too are growing well.  No sign of squash bugs yet, I'll keep my fingers crossed!  


Turban Gourd - 7-5



Cinderella Pumpkins - 7-5
 Still to come... beans, eggplant, peppers, berries, apples, and a few duds!






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