plant diary header

October 23rd
Well, sure has been awhile. September saw the sweet peppers double in size once I removed the corn. Will not be doing corn again next year - took up too much room and too much moisture. Plus it shaded the rest of the bed.

We have planted about a dozen strawberry plants

Strawberry seedlings - click for larger image
click for larger image

We also planted some lettuce that has sprouted nicely

Lettuce- click for larger image
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The luffa plants are bigger than ever - still producing a flower now and again and a second gord has started - will not grow these either next year. Too much plant, too few gords.
Lettuce- click for larger image         Lettuce- click for larger image
click for larger images

Pulled out all the grape tomatoes. The spaghetti squash producered two more good sized vegetables. The hot peppers are still full of fruit but taking forever to ripen with the cooler weather and decreased sun light (same with the plum tomatoes).

August 28th
It has cooled off considerably here in south Jersey. Only 70° today - kinda nice actually. Plus it's been raining off and on today (and rather breezy) - the weather people tell us it's supposed to be like this through the weekend. We could sure use the moisture.

Harvested all the popcorn yesterday. It's been so damn hot some of it started to pop on the stalks. Also had an issue with cross pollination of the two varieties.
Ornamental Popcorn - click for larger image   Popped popcorn - click for larger image   cross pollination of corn - click for larger image

The first picture is some examples of the ornamental popcorn. The second shot show kernels already bursting. The final picture is of two ears of the white hulless popcorn. The ear on the left was cross pollinated from the ornamental popcorn growing nearby.

All the stalks went into the compost pile. Now I have over half a bed free. We're going to plant some lettuce and, who knows... maybe some broccoli.
August 22nd
The Dirt Under the Nails area has seen some changes as of this update. This diary has been moved to its own page. (Here you are!!! Hope you found it OK).

There are some new pictures of my succulents - check out their page.

I have also - FINALLY - gotten a flower on the luffa plant.

Luffa flower thumbnail
click on image for larger view

The solitary eggplant that germinated is making a come-back. Earlier in the season something ate it clear to the dirt, but look now. Leaves.

Eggplant thumbnail
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August 12th
Well, the attempt at jam making this past weekend went well, I think. Everything tastes as I thought it would. Put up a half dozen half pint jars each of tomato jam, peach & vanilla jam and onion and hot pepper relish. Getting all kinds of domestic.

When I got into work is AM I discovered this little guy hanging out in my grape tomoto plant. I think they're good luck...
Praying mantis thumbnail         Praying mantis thumbnail
click on images for larger view

As I reported last week - I entered 8 products from the garden into our county fair. Took 3 blue (1st place), 3 red (2nd place) and 2 white (3rd place) ribbons.
Praying mantis thumbnail
click on image for larger view
August 9th
Has been an absolutely beautiful week here in south Jersey. High seventies to low eighties. Now if we could just get a few days of good, soaking rain.

Thought a picture of the flowering cleome might be in order. Also a shot of one of the glads we planted along the front of the building.
thumbnail         thumbnail
flowers around the office - click for larger images

Continuing to harvest tomatoes and peppers - have so many that this weekend I'm going to attempt hot pepper jelly and tomato jam.
August 7th
Where to start... so much has happened in the last month. The mini ears did produce but 20 stalks don't give you enough. Plus figuring out when to pick them. I doubt I will do corn again next year. I just don't have enough room - 20 plants of each variety is not enough and I think I'm having some cross pollination issues. I have cut down all the mini ear stalks. It's just too dry here to let a plant not producing anything to keep sucking up the water. My compost pile doubled in size last night.

Our county fair is going on this week. I entered 2nd generation grape tomatoes; cayenne, jalapeno, sweet banana, cubanelle and purple bell peppers; and roma tomatoes. My viva tomatoes are just starting to get ripe and my habaneros are just staring to bud. The 2 varieties of popcorn I left standing have to cure on the stalk and wont be ready until late September. The spaghetti squash are continuing to grow and the mini pumpkins have finally flowered and are getting fruit. The luffa has grown right up the side of my building but has yet to produce a flower or a gord. Hense, none of these thing could get entered into the fair.

The cleome is in full blume and has been for the last several weeks. The flower garden is looking a little haggard. Not enough water. We haven't had a good rain in over a month. Have to get out there and cut back the dead plants; especially the shasta daisies.

pepper - thumbnail         grape tomatoes - thumbnail
samples of the first harvest - click for larger images
July 11th
The heat has finally broken - it may reach only 80° today. Everything is doing well - new pictures as soon as the digital camera returns from the repair shop. Looks like I'm going to get a bumper crop of speghetti squash. The tomatillos and cubanelle peppers seem to be producing well too. The corn is tassling and I'm seeing some ears on the mini ear variety.
June 28th
Well, leave it to mom to know exactly what the plants below are - CLEOME or spider flower.
thumbnail - cleome
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We seem to be having a Japanese Beetle infestation down here in south Jersey - they're getting into my corn. Been hotter than anything the past week - 90+ all days. But we continue to get good rain so all looks to be well. Check out the latest pictures of the gardens.
June 20th
We have been getting rain almost daily now. All the gardens are doing well - just growing there lttle hearts out... The peppers seem to be on the small side this year - not sure what's up with that. Also have a picture of some plants I grew from seed this year - only have no idea what they are - any suggestions?
thumbnail - unknown plants
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May 31st
Co-worker brought in some chives and origano to place in the garden. Also placed some chocolate mint and some lemon balm into pots. Got rid of (I hope) the spearmint seedlings - didn't realize who mint can take over a garden. Will need to thin out the squash patch - 7 plants came up. Also will need to thin the luffa and the pumpkin areas.
May 24th
Transpanted the pepper seedlings.
May 23st
What a difference a day makes. Have several squash plants popping through - only one pumpkin though. The corn is looking good but it may need some additional nitrogen - will run a PSNT as soon as it hits 8 inches. I placed a moisture sensor in each bed for an evaluation for work. The soil at the bottom of the raise beds is nice and 'evenly moist' judging from the columns I had to remove to set the sensors.
May 21st
Looks like some of my spearmint is finally coming up - along with the chives. Still no sign of the squash or pumpkins. But it looks like the last of the cooler weather will be behind us after tonight...
May 20th
They package said 7-10 days for germination. They didn't lie - at least in the case of the corn. I have teeny, tiny little sprouts just sticking themselves into daylight. Now if the rest of the seeds would be so nice as to sprout.
May 15th
Get a load of these tomatoes. I bought them at the store 2 weeks ago. I cut into them last night for a sandwich and lo-and-behold they're sprouting!!
May 14th
The tomato & basil seedlings we planted last week have bit the dust. In the past two years (since I planted in pots, I think) I never had a problem with hardening off the seedlings. Well, the ones from May 7th took a beating - nothing left. So, I have been putting the trays of tomato & pepper seedlings outside beginning yesterday. I figure they should be good to go by Monday the 20th. Live and learn.
May 13th
We planted 3 varieties of corn (mini, pop & indian), spaghetti squash & mini pumpkins. Our area is expecting rain later today - so they'll get a good soaking. By next Monday, we should see some sprouts (I hope).

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