Friday, June 15, 2012

What Is Eating My Tomato Plants?

I went out into the garden this morning and found some of our tomatoes to be looking quite sickly. something is eating the leaves, and even the vines. What could it be?

You can tell this is looking pretty sickly...

Here's a closer shot (enlarge to see better). Although it's out of focus, one of the stems has been completely stripped of leaves.

Whatever got to this one had the audacity to eat the entire top of the stem off!
Have you ever had an issue like this? This is my fourth year growing tomatoes and nothing has ever chewed on my plants like this. We have an entirely fenced in garden, so unless something is burrowing that I'm unaware of, it would have to be something that can climb a fence or drop in from a tree (squirrel, bird, etc).

Monday, June 11, 2012

Harvest Monday - June 11, 2012

Some of these radishes were harvested this week, and some the week before. This represents a little less than half of my entire radish harvest. I grew three varieties - I think I'm only going to bother with one next year - hopefully one that sizes up better than my Easter Egg and French Breakfast radishes did. Many of them failed to form a suitable root at all.

All of this lettuce was harvested on Wednesday. It's a mix from Pine Tree, as well as a lot of yellow oak leaf lettuce I had left over from last year.

This is the second harvest of scapes; the first harvest was about the same amount. I have a total of 10 heads of hard neck garlic planted, and about half of them have scapes left (some more in the shade are still forming) - I'm waiting for them to make "the curl" before I cut them.

If you pretend that I have another picture of lettuce and scapes exactly like the ones above, that's what I harvested on Sunday night.

Although it's not from my garden, we picked 38 pounds of strawberries from a local fruit farm on Sunday morning. We have about 6 gallons of frozen berries, 13 jars of jam, and a few quarts for fresh eating this week.

Happy harvesting! Check out harvests from around the world on Daphne's Dandelions.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Gardening Don'ts

  • Don't toss diseased tomatoes in the dirt or let over-ripe tomatoes fall to the ground if you actually want something other than tomatoes to grow in that bed next year.
  • Even if the see packet says your peas don't need support, give them some.
  • When planting two types of peas, don't plant them right next to each other. It's impossible to tell the difference come harvest time.
  • Don't grow "Topper" turnips thinking you'll get a burst of greens and then a really great turnip. There's really no turnip at all.
  • Don't believe the maturity listed on beet packets if you're planting in the spring. Allow for 150 - 200% of the stated time.
The garden is finally shaping up, and I've learned the "don'ts" at the top of this post this year. For instance, this is the bed where my carrots were supposed to be:

Sure looks like a lot of tomatoes to me. Confession: I didn't keep them consistently watered and didn't cover them with anything to promote germination, so I'm not surprised only 2 out of 100+ came up. But the tomatoes sure survived! Anyone need some young transplants? I also spy some tomatoes in my patch of young beets (even though they were planted over a month ago and are supposed to mature in 50+ days, none are close to maturity).

Moving on to the peas:

What a tangled mess!

Not everything in the garden is an example of a "don't." My garlic looks great:

Onions and leeks are also well on their way:

Summer squash is starting to come up:

From left to right, the celery, basil, and parsley looks ok. Some of the basil leaves yellowed a bit, but the top growth looks great. They look way more yellow in this picture because the sun was setting.

So, beans. They're coming up, but they're being attacked. In order, here are vermont cranberry, rattlesnake, and a closeup of the Kentucky wonder and a variety whose name escapes me right now. What's eating them?

Now, some garden photos for posterity, featuring the a-frame trellis that Aaron made for my cucumbers. We just need to staple some plastic fencing to it that we have sitting around.

What's the healthiest plant in the garden so far? Other than the garlic, it's the tomatoes hanging in baskets along the driveway. This is a Matt's Wild Cherry. The vine is much thicker than all my other tomatoes, which unfortunately are a bit spindly right now, and it already has blossoms.

I harvested some veggies tonight, but those pictures will be saved until Harvest Monday. Happy gardening!