Sunday, June 22, 2014

The 2014 Season - Strawberries, Spinach, Lettuce, and Snow Peas!

My Garlic Planted Last Fall

How can a gardener have time to garden and blog? By giving up Facebook, that's how! School ended Wednesday and was followed with the most amazing weather we've had in a while. Real Maine spring weather. Cool, dry, breezy, and sunny. Over the past few days I have been able to get the gardens planted and mulched. Always a relief to get mulching done. This year I'm using hay in the back garden and straw in the lower garden. Years ago I only used newspaper covered with hay. But hay is tricky as it's a perennial. So the possibility of hay seed taking hold in the garden is a real threat. I was always lucky as it usually worked like a charm... but I also roto-tilled every season. Since I stopped using a rototiller I've switched to straw. Straw is an annual so any seeds that sprout will die over the winter. Even though hay seed makes me nervous I find myself using hay again this year since I got a few bales for cheap. Straw is wicked expensive. My fingers are crossed.

Early yesterday morning I was watering with a liquid seaweed diluted water and I noticed the tops of some peas and tomato plants nipped off and the telltale deer sign was there. They always leave a little tip along the top.

I've been picking spinach and lettuce for about two weeks now and my first batch of strawberries this morning. We've been nibbling on them all day. Wonderful!

Is there anything better than sun warmed strawberries? Yes, organic sun warmed strawberries. I just read that the inorganic strawberries available in the grocery store are sprayed with up to 13 pesticides. Wow, now that is just wrong. Here's a link to one article: So to have homegrown, organic strawberries just makes sense and tastes pretty darn good.

Here is a picture of my eggplants. Not so good. I know every garden has things that just don't grow quite right and my peppers and eggplant prove that as they look awful. I was so proud of them when they were ready for transplanting. I grew them from seed and they thrived. They were so beautiful. Now they look just terrible. Yellowish, purplish, stunted, and lower leaves dropping off. Any ideas what that may be? I'm thinking a combination of a nutrient deficiency and too cold soil or nighttime air temps.

As we begin yet another gardening season here in Maine, may your gardens be lush and productive. May you enjoy the work the gardens bring. And may you just be happy.
Enjoy the time,