Yellopig Is Free

Or, Recreating A Life From Scratch

Garden Update — August/September 2014

Hurricane Odile just sent me my first squall, so there won’t be any garden action for a couple of days. In the meantime, let me show you what’s been going on out there.


So here you see wax beans at the lower right, green beans in the middle, a pepper plant at the very bottom, three caged tomatoes at the left, then sunflowers and cucumbers just outside the tomato cages.

The wax beans have done much better than the green beans, even though I gave them all a dose of Epsom salts. This was recommended to provide them with magnesium, and because the soil is a bit poor. The wax beans loved it, the green beans liked it, but weren’t quite as impressed. Here are the wax beans doing their thing.


And they have been delicious, tender and buttery. Mmmm!


The green beans have been less prolific, but I do get two or three a week to snack on while inspecting the garden. They’re sweet and crunchy.


And it’s not like they’re not trying.


Pretty flowers. And when I see them, I go and jiggle the plants a little, in case they might benefit from that kind of encouragement.

The cukes are flowering very nicely, but I can’t tell the male flowers from the female flowers, so I haven’t been able to help them along. I wouldn’t make a very good bee.


Eventually, they figured it out, though:


And that ended up like this:


I may have waited one day too long on that one, but it was still pretty good. And there are two four(!) more forming up just now. 🙂

I also have two peppers almost ready, and here’s one.


I’ve got only one tomato so far, and it’s almost cheating, since it was already a baby on the plant when I bought it. It finally ripened into this:


That’s about golf-ball sized, or half as big as it should be. I’ve had no luck with tomatoes. I got some seeds to sprout, but birds ate them; I had three left, and those did OK for a while, then keeled over and died. They didn’t leave a note, so I don’t know what the problem was. Then I bought 6 plants; three of them are in the garden bed, the other three I put in large pots near the others. The ones in the pots all died. My current theory is that they want more nitrogen and less water. The three in the ground seem to be doing better, and they seem to like having the cucumber leaves shading them. That’s probably also a clue: the sun may be slightly too strong for them just now. Maybe they’ll perk up in a month or so.

Lastly, I planted sunflowers to act as a trellis for the cucumbers to climb on, and they’ve done a good job at that. And for a bonus, they look terrific!


They make me smile.


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2 thoughts on “Garden Update — August/September 2014

  1. solarbeez on said:

    Sunflowers make me smile too.
    I don’t know why your tomatoes are dying, but when mine were dying, I read something about spraying a mixture of epsom salts and water on their leaves. It was like a tonic from the gods. My tomato vines started getting green leaves sprouting from them. (The vines had looked so bad, I didn’t want any photos of them.) If we continue to get the Indian summer that we usually get, I’m going to get another batch of tomatoes. Since you mentioned epsom salts, I thought I’d pass that along, but we also don’t get the hot hot weather that you get. Our nights get into the low 50’s. At least you have a long growing season, so it’s possible you’ll get more.

    • Clawing back the cucumber vines to find the tomatoes, I see that they seem to have abandoned their original stems, and are putting up a healthy second main stem with lovely leaves and a couple of flowers. Maybe it was all just transplant shock? Still have the epsom salts ready though!

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