Friday, June 27, 2014

The Worlds Most Expensive Vegetables - Part 12

I skipped a week. So sue me.
I'll make up for it in pictures. Here's an overall picture where it's more difficult to see the weeds. You also can't see the cucumber bugs that are eating and mating on the melons, cucumbers, and squashies. You can't see them now either 'cause I've been out at 10:00 the last few nights with a flashlight, catching them doin' the dirty and executing them on the spot. Is nothing sacred? The first night that I counted there were close to 200 that perished but last night's battle count was under fifteen. For some reason they really like yellow crookneck squash. Not pictured is the only expense these past two weeks... a $12 Burbank plum tree which makes my total an even $500. However I didn't know that plums need a second variety so this fall I'll shop around for a Santa Rosa and this summer I'll cut down a dead tree to make room for the newest member of the family.
The great news is that the garden has started producing! For a few weeks the sugar snap peas have been limping along and more than once I've caught one of the younger kids eating a pea pod. Not a sugar snap pea but a regular pea pod full of plump uncooked peas. Weirdos. The strawberries are also revving up, though the berries are on the small side. And look at those lovely beets! I cooked up the yellow and one red last night and they were delicious! The other two red will be turned into beet chips for my lovely bride. This very early marconi pepper was sacrificed to my stomach so the plant could focus it's attention on bigger and better things (that will go into my stomach).

Plump Carrot

Here's the ol' carrot patch! Although I tried to be careful in watering the seeds tended to float away from the center. There shall be thinning in their future but for now the vacated center is being used as a second beet crop to be turned into tasty chips. And here's the first full grown carrot, a plump parisian! That was fast! I'll certainly be adding many more of these soon.

Onto the experiments! The "raised bed" box for melons is working splendidly, though it does nothing to keep the cucumber bugs at bay. And although not an official experiment, I found that the sweet potatoes that were under black plastic are growing much better than the ones without, though I have no idea how they manage to get water.

 Meanwhile, back at Compost Central, the watermelon is going gangbusters. At least I think it's a watermelon. I'll be surprised if it really grows something because it's likely the spawn of some melon grown in much warmer climates. And how about them taters? These have surprised me, growing like, er, weeds! I had some wire fencing that I made into cages and have been adding dirt as they've grown. I'm not sure but I think the wire fence came with my first house, purchased twenty odd years ago. It's from K-Mart and was made in the U.S.A.

Another surprise is the lone plant started from seed months and months ago. While not as big as the goliaths purchased at the store, the plant is taking off quite nicely. I might even get some heirloom tomatoes!
What's left? Oh, raspberries! These are from the ones transplanted from the other house. Also there are wild raspberries growing all along the creek just a brief stroll away from our house. Sure, there are tall weeds potentially full of disease carrying ticks but I'm talkin' free raspberries here! I snagged three yesterday after work but didn't explore very far. There are also what looks very much like grape vines but I'm not seeing anything grapey.

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