The plants in my garden are focusing their energy on fruit production. While it wasn’t long ago that we celebrated our first cluster of green tomatoes, now the plants are covered in tomatoes of all shapes and sizes. Even the pepper plants are dangling their prizes, tantalizing us as we watch and wait. The potato plants are huge and I’m tempted to steal a potato but I worry about disrupting the plant since I’m new to potato thieving. The other root vegetables underwent another ruthless thinning, I left the carrots since my eldest does his own form of thinning as he enjoys a carrot snack from the garden every day.
For the most part the plants have been disease free. I noticed some leafminers in my Swiss chard, beet greens and lettuce and picked off the affected leaves and put them in the compost. Apparently the leaves should be frozen first to kill off the maggots. I also noticed blossom-end rot, a circular black spot at the bottom of a tomato, on several of my tomatoes. Apparently this is caused by lack of calcium in the growing fruit and can be exacerbated by uneven watering. The rest of the tomatoes appear fine, but I have to keep this mind for next year and incorporate some limestone in my soil prior to planting in the spring. I have been using the Home & Garden Pest Management Guide to help me identify disease and pests in the garden.
Not all my crops are doing wonderfully. The peas are a waste of garden space. They should have been started earlier and the only reason I haven’t pulled them out is because they provide a source of entertainment for my children when they find a occasional pod. The bush beans are struggling as well, a few plants are strong and prolific the others seem stunted. I need to do some research to see if I can discover the reason why.
As crops mature and are removed from the garden I am preparing for a fall and winter garden. I ordered some seeds from West Coast Seeds started some walla walla onions and winter cabbage indoors. I also planted another crops of parsnips. I am curious to see how much food I can get out of my gardens even in the fall and winter.