Oct 27, 2011

First Frost

I knew it was coming, and decided to do nothing to stop it.  I thought about rushing out after work to cover my poor little plants up.  However, you guys know what a brutal summer it has been.  Frankly, at this point in the year, I am ready to baby my broccoli when it gets really cold, but am not ready to prolong the growing season of anything else.  Here is what I found when I made it out to my garden the next day. Warning: If you are opposed to seeing a mess, avert your eyes.

My eggplant, which is a heat-lover, is wilted and dead.

My jalapeno, another fan of summer heat, froze to death.

Finally, my tomatoes.  They were just starting to show signs of life again with the cool down, but you can see the frost damage in the first picture.  Basically, my garden was a big mess of things that I needed to pull.  I am in the midst of cleaning it all up and preparing to put the beds to sleep for the winter. 

Yes, dear readers, this means my posting frequency will soon be down to nothing as I will have nothing growing and changing in my little garden.  This isn't my last post of the year, but I want to thank you all for your support this past year.  I've had so much fun writing my little blog and learning and growing right alongside my garden. 

Oct 24, 2011

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Thank you Eric Carle.  =)  This weekend I was doing a little garden clean up when I found a HUGE caterpillar eating some of my green tomatoes. Note: I forgot to put something in the photo for scale, but you can kind of use the bricks as a guide.

He has pretty good camouflage, can you see him?  Yup, the little sucker is enjoying my tomatoes.  Normally I would freak out and start searching online to see what I need to do to get rid of yet another pest.  However, being the end of the season, I was more intrigued than plagued.

For those of you who are curious, I found out it is a tomato hornworm.  Ahem.  Any jokes are entirely too obvious.  =)  If you are really nerdy like me, you can find more information here.

He really blends right in.  I'm not even sure how I saw him!  I think it's safe to say my small garden is on the insect rest stop map, and am curious to see what surprises (Read: problems) next year will bring.

Oct 16, 2011

On a Soapbox

There are a lot of reasons that I started my garden.  I am a huge nerd and love to learn about anything, hence the title of this blog.  I also love that I know absolutely no pesticides have been used at any stage in my garden.  I enjoy walking out into my backyard and watching mother nature shape and destroy my clueless plans.  =)  I also really like making people laugh, and I think so far this year I have succeeded in that last one! 

This garden also came about because of things I know and believe.  There are so many humans on this earth, and I know that we cannot continue on the path we are on and expect to be able to feed everyone and still have a place to call home.  My opinions are echoed in this article.

If you have time to read it, you will see that a THIRD or more of greenhouse gases come from the way we currently farm.  It also says that we will need to DOUBLE our food supply in 40 years to feed everyone.  

So, if you are thinking about starting a garden, I urge you to give it a try.  I hope I have shown you all that any idiot with a little bit of time and water can successfully grow SOMETHING worthwhile.  It's a great time to prepare and build your garden beds so that next spring you can plant right away and enjoy the fruits (or vegetables) of your labor.

I am stepping off my hippie soapbox now.  =) 

Oct 11, 2011


Everything is falling apart!!!

Well, I guess my trellis is now just leaning against the fence under the weight of the plants, and against the ghetto rigging that was applied a while ago.  Still, I am ALMOST ready for winter.  =)  Ask me about that again in December/January.

Oct 4, 2011

Testing Yew

No, it isn't a typo.  I know I have mentioned MULTIPLE TIMES that I really hate the landscaping out front that the previous owners left me.  It is entirely too many plants in one space and I hate rock.  HATE.  However, I know that I am stuck with it because removing all of that rock and digging out all of those mature plants sounds like time and energy that I don't have. 

Here is one of the plants that I hate. 

And I have two of these, ICK!  Normally it is green, but with the brutal summer, it is common for these yews to be burnt here in Kansas.  According to local gardening sources (aka the newspaper) you must trim just the burnt tips off of these plants so that they will not go into shock and will recover from the burn.  After a little while of doing this, I am almost certain it is a practical joke being played on me by someone.

This one is not that badly burnt, but it is still giving me nightmares.  As I sat on the sidewalk, patiently clipping just the burnt tips off my mind began to wander...

If I was in a movie, this would be Karate Kid.  And when I met my arch nemesis, I would have some amazing karate skill learned from this tedious work given to me by Mr. Miyagi, along with words to live by. "Angela-san: Burn on. Burn off."  Or maybe, "Woman who trim all burned parts off can accomplish anything."

Alas, this is real life, and I am pretty sure I don't have any new karate skills.  Maybe, just maybe though, my plants will live.  Below is half of one miserable yew, given the Miyagi treatment by me.  Ha!

Looks better already!  =)

Oct 2, 2011

Here it goes again

Music is so interrelated to everything I do in life.  Almost every song reminds me of something or someone... and if you ever drive by during nice weather when the windows are open, you'll probably hear me belting out a few tunes.  Fair warning.  =)  The OK Go song title pretty much sums up my craziness right now.  I can't believe it, but I am back to planting a fall crop of vegetables.

I pulled out the burned up sad corn, and my zucchini gave up the ghost a long time ago.  So, while at my local nursery, I picked up broccoli transplants.  (I am still on the hunt for lettuce to plant, just give me time.)  Then I gave my broccoli a new home with just a dash of compost from my worms.

Another beautiful thing about square foot gardening is the natural crop rotation that takes place.  Zucchini and corn were in these spots, and by just following mother nature's schedule, I have rotated crops. Also, with the addition of compost every time you plant, you are making sure your soil never gets depleted.  Voila!  Easy, breezy beautiful gardening.  =)  Here's to a successful (hopefully) fall crop!