Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Before the Heat

      I went out to view the garden this morning before the 90 degree heat and high humidity set in.  Some flowers are just now coming in.

Yellow day lily,  June 25th, 2013
Gloriosa Daisy
      I love the Gloriosa Daisies.  Unfortunately for me, they self seed very sparingly.  So when they do pop up, they are much appreciated.  I should dead head them to a specific garden patch to see if I can get more of them next year.

The first of the phlox!

      I love this magenta day lily.  Nobody took any during my spring plant give away.  Their loss, my gain.  It would look nice in other parts of the yard.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Savoy Cabbage Harvest

      Some critter, probably a rabbit, had snipped off one of my four Savoy Cabbage starts that I had put in my park garden in the spring.  The plant tried to make a comeback, but the head was going to be quite small. Yesterday I noticed that some critter had eaten half of that small head (probably a vole), so it was time to harvest the good heads before they got chomped.

Isn't she pretty?
The other two good heads
I will grow Savoy Cabbage again
Red Cabbage still needs more time

      Here are the three heads of the Savoy, one of which was sliced in half.  We ran the one half through the food shredder along with a complete smallish head of regular green cabbage.  Added carrots sliced and my own Walla Walla onions diced.  Cindy made a vinaigrette dressing with some of our fresh parsley, then it was into the fridge for a few hours to cool and mix.  With some pork chops and buttered boiled potatoes, it made for a fine summer dinner.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Cabbage Looking Good

      I had planted four cabbage plants in a bed, then surrounded them with onion starts.  Wondering if the onions might ward off evil spirits and cabbage moths.  One of the cabbage had his top eaten open, probably from voles.  Another one had some rot, so it got tossed into the compost pile.  The other two were somewhat passable as food, but as I peeled off leaf after leaf, I continued to find pill bugs, centipedes, and even earthworms.  Finally got down to two decent cores which I put in a tight bag into the fridge.
      The Savoy cabbage and red cabbage that are still in the ground are much more attractive, and have little apparent bug damage.  Maybe the answer is to grow the weird cabbage.  These are totally organic, with no pesticides or even fertilizers used. 

Savoy Cabbage, June 18th,  2013
Red Cabbage
      Now what do I do with the cabbage?  If somebody has a cherished recipe for coleslaw or any other preparation of cabbage, I would love to try it.

Stormy Weather

      Rain, rain, and still more rain.  And sometimes too much wind.  Certainly too much for these two trees that caused trouble in our neighborhood yesterday.

Normandy Manor entrance blocked, June 17th, 2013

But a reason for neighbors to gather
      Everyone I talked to this morning was shocked that Delmarva Power had worked over night and restored the power by 5:30 this morning.  They earned some accolades for that one.
      But one neighbor had damage up close and personal, as the big oak tree in their back yard barely missed the house when it snapped in the storm.

      The top of the tree just grazed the garage of their house.  However, their patio furniture is crushed.   The owner had been gathering bids to take down the tree, but Murphy beat them to it.  Two other trees were damaged by the felled tree, so that they too will need to come down.  Bummer.
      Oh, and it is raining again.  And last week my rain gauge/garden cart registered 7.25 inches of rain from two previous storms.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Early Garlic Harvest

Garlic picked June 6th,  2013
      Last years garlic harvest was somewhat disappointing because it did not store well.  The wrappers were very thin, and some were torn as I dug the bulbs.  Early indications this year were positive, with a big crop growing quickly.  But a few weeks ago, some of the leaves were starting to turn brown, and now many of the plants have fallen over.  The bulbs above will be okay, but they are on the small side.  Harvest date around here should be around June 22nd or later, so I am concerned that the garlic doesn't know that.

Many stems fallen over
Garlic from bulbils
      The garlic shown above from bulbils planted in the fall of 2012 are even further along.  If I don't dig them all now, the stems will soon disappear and leave me no way to find the bulbs.  I knew that I would have to replant the first year bulbils this fall for another season next year, but I expected a longer season for them this year.  Anybody else experiencing a forced early harvest of the garlic crop?

      This bed of garlic was started from some of my larger cloves in 2012, and seems to be doing a little better with continuing growth.  My garlic over at the park looks better, that is the plants are more robust and not falling over.  Yet when I dig down in the soil to take a peek at the bulb size, I am disappointed that they are not larger.  I guess it makes sense that this often cool and damp spring has kept down bulb size, but why should they be stopping their growth?

      Update June 11th, 2013:
Part of forced early harvest, drying on a screen