Today, I’m officially declaring my garden a drought zone. This heat is quickly becoming overbearing and I don’t see much help in sight. Too bad I don’t qaulify for State or Federal assistance (LOL). I just wish I could do more for my remaining vegetables.
This morning I began to make preparations for next year’s exploits. I received a catalog in the mail and, after browsing it’s pages, decided to place an order for a 4-way soil analyzer and a 6 lb bag of soil conditioner. I have come to believe that as my garden progresses this year that it’s lacking in areas other than moisture. Hopefully, with these items, I can figure out the deficiencies and make the necessary adjustments this fall and next spring.
This evening, I started turning up my Kennebec potatoes. I got a little over halfway through the row and my results are poorer than I thought they would be. The size is better than what the Yukon’s were but the numbers aren’t nearly as good. Oh well, it’s still better than last year’s washout where most of my crop rotted in the ground.
Looking forward, I’ll try to get the remaining spuds out by Saturday. I’ve also got cucumbers, tomatoes, beets and jalapeños that need picking soon. I’ll report on that at a later date. Good Evening and thanks to all my readers!
As dry as it’s been during the growing season thus far coupled with my summer and fall time restraints, I made the choice to dig up my Yukon Gold potatoes yesterday afternoon. The plants were days from being completely dead anyway since there are back to back 90+ degree days in the near forecast. My niece, 13 year old Tricia, and her brother, Toby who’s 9, were more than willing to give me a helping hand.
The crop turned out to be an average one. The numbers were there as most of the sets produced between 12 and 20 new tubers, with the highest that I counted being 23. Upon inspection, you could tell that the only thing that kept this from being a bumper crop was a lack of moisture once the plants had bloomed and set new potatoes. We did end up with a yield of close to 30 pounds consisting of 85 percent mediums, 10 percent larges and 5 percent smalls. We threw very few out that were too small to keep. I would have liked to see the top end finish out with a little more size, but I can’t complain. I’ll definitely take it over last year when 50% of my crop rotted in the ground due to excessive rain.
While we were in digging mode, I turned up the two end plants in my row of Russets (still very green) and 5 of my Kennebecs- which are probably a week away from harvest. From the looks of that dig, the white potatoes are set to do much better this year than the gold. They didn’t have quite the numbers that the gold had, but the size and quality appears to be outstanding. We were all very excited to see this and now can’t wait to be able to get them out of the ground also.
Once we were done with the potatoes, we cut our first head of late broccoli along with the seconds off the early row. In addition, we picked another zucchini and our first half dozen tomatoes of the year. I’m hoping for a nice yield from my ‘maters because my mother has hinted that she wants to make homemade ketchup this year. I don’t care for the taste of tomatoes, but I’ll eat anything made from them and I think my mom’s ketchup is to die for. I’m sorry, but it’s a secret family recipe so don’t ask because I’m not telling.
To finish up, we put some fresh grass clippings around the strawberry plants and gave the majority of the remaining garden a big drink of water. Hopefully, this will carry things over for at least a couple of days.
It’s been a very warm and dry past few weeks. This year, I can be fortunate that I’m an early season gardener for the most part. Nearly all of my early vegetables have already been harvested with the last head of late cabbage and last two kohlrabi taken earlier today. My second crop broccoli and potatoes are close enough that I believe they will produce nicely.
I’ve made it a habit -with the help of my father – to water everything at least every other day. So far, so good except for my poor sweet corn. I just can’t seem to be able to get it jump started this year. I’m going to apply some 24-8-16 fertilizer on both sides of each row tomorrow. It won’t be long before I start getting tomatoes, cucumbers and zucchini in large quantities. I’m still hoping for normal rain activity to find our area soon or we may enter into drought status.
Q : Everyone knows how the Green Giant looks when he’s working in the field. But when he goes to a corporate board meeting, what does he usually wear?
A : A three peas suit.