Monday, June 20, 2011

Pardon Me, But Is This Piece of Sky Taken?

The bean towers are up.  There are dozens of pole bean varieties to grow and everyone of them with a compelling narrative....if you are growing stories.  (In America, we have reached that level of wealth where we are starving for context and the content be damned.)
I've planted the Cherokee strain of Trail of Tears-a vigorous  pole bean.  With a name like that, you know there's a sad story; this is the bean that the Cherokee  people took on the winter death marches that forced them across the Mississippi River.  Meanwhile, in New Millennium America, I send the Trail of Tears on a space grab into the sky and  choose this variety to commemorate what the people suffered, to refresh the knowledge of what the Humans have done/still do/will do again.  

The Bad Boys have arrived.  This is deer damage on the speckled trout belly lettuce.  The deer munched a path through Swiss chard and broccoli in neighboring gardens.  Initially there was outrage against human thieves, but eventually we found the hoof prints to indict Bambi.  Well, said a misogynist down the way, if people would just close the gates, these things wouldn't happen.  Sure, I'd love to blame the Humans for everything bad that ever happens, but the gate is 3 feet tall-no challenge to deer whatsoever. 

Have potato patch...have Colorado Potato Beetles-it's a law written down somewhere.  The bug, popularly known as CPB although I refuse to indulge it with an acronym, is truly a creep.  You can hand pick for awhile, but let your labor pause and learn a vivid lesson in exponential growth.  Nearly all the gardens here have a potato patch and for the One Crop Plot, potatoes are the most popular choice, so the bug has ample habitat.  (And no, it's not pretty or cute.  I snagged them off my plants and plunked them into a jar of diatomaceous  earth. Normally, it's the other way around.  You dust the plants with the D.E.  But I was pissed.  I would do that to the deer too, but D.E. is actually good for mammals and birds...gets rid of intestinal parasites in the same way it helps against other bugs.)

I'll shake this poor eggplant to get some of the D.E. off; it's under heavy flea beetle attack.  Organic pest control literature will tell us to grow the eggplant-particularly the fat Italian types-as a trap crop for flea beetles and that does work.  No beetle damage elsewhere in the garden, but the eggplants are gasping, and I'd rather have them than the broccoli.  The eggplants may survive just long enough for this wave of flea beetles to complete their brief life span.

Serendipity....a tradescantia growing on the garden border.  Looks charming and will give the quack and reed canary grass some competition which should tell you something about this plant.

The calla lily loves the mushy canal.

Diplomat broccoli and Yukon Gold potatoes thriving.

Robin pal hoping for excavation.  I wish he was a threat to deer and beetles.

This is salvia guaranitica already calling in the hummingbirds who are notoriously camera shy.  Hummingbirds love all of the salvia family.  I've got a few of the Lady In Red variety that were symmetrically bitten off by Bambi's midnight snacking -no photos for awhile.

1 comment:

  1. The embedded links to photos is a nice compliment to the narratives.


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