Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Worlds Most Expensive Vegetables - Part 9

Ah, Memorial Day weekend! Fortunately I did most of the gardening work in the proceeding week so I was able to relax. Seen to the left is my weird attempt at a melon, gourd, and squashie patch. Sure, I could spend hours and hours removing the grass around my mounds but then what would I put in it's place? So for now it stays. Looking at the picture it almost looks like a cemetery, what with the two large rocks that serve to keep the hose from trampling the small plants but here look like tombstones. Oh well. Most of these were started from seed in wee little pots so that they have a jumpstart. I have no luck with starting small seeds like tomatoes or peppers but big ol' squash and melon seeds and I get along just fine. Sometimes herb and flower seeds work out for me but this year my two year old "helper" has seen fit to play in the dirt of my herb seed pots and so I have to start again. But not the melons. They sprouted with little effort and are now enjoying the sun. One oddness was from some orange watermelon seeds I impulse purchased for fifty cents. I had them in the same seed starting warmer as the rest but they wouldn't go even after all their peers had left their wombs. Figuring it just wasn't going to happen I removed the peat pots and set them outside with the rest of my failures and two days later, after they dried out, they sprouted!

One enjoyable thing about new land is finding sun and shade patterns. There's a three foot strip of land behind my two out buildings right next to a neighbors field that I had written off this past winter because surely it would be in shade from the two buildings. Nope! It's full sun! So as an added bonus I put down two more melons mounds, this time encased in an experimental single two-foot square box. We'll see how that goes, eh?

Checking in on the peas I see that they are climbing nicely, though not yet giving us any tasty pods. Speaking of eating, I brought it some more tiny spinach plants for a salad. I made sure there wasn't a tiny bug in them this time.

And those green beans are starting to sprout. I was a bit concerned because the weather took a turn for the cold right after they were planted and I feared that they would rot instead of sprout.

My only expense this week was $15 for four hefty tomato cages (seen on the left). You get those bitty ones for a buck or two and any self-respecting tomato plant just crushes them. But these... these are MASSIVE! The wire is about as thick as a pencil. BWA HA HA!!! That brings my total up to $448. Yikes!

Because I have no better place to put this, here's my now-crushed Mountain Dew knock-off can collection from back when I drank brominated vegetable oil. Mtn. Dew and Dr. Pepper knock offs have some weird and original names which gives them a leg up over something like "Orange Soda." Unless you're talking about "Holy Cow Orange." Alas, I no longer have a need for their visual clutter and soon they shall bring me sixty cents per pound.

Lesson learned: Pinching the first set of flowers off newly planted strawberry plants is painful but must be done for long term success. At least that's what the instructions said and I'm going to believe that these professional berry growers know their stuff.

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