Wednesday, June 10, 2009

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Despite the lack of sunshine for a while, the lasagna garden is finally taking off. The last few days have been pretty sunny, and I've seen the squash and tomatoes stretch their little forms to the light.

This is the garden right after I planted it in April:

And here it is this morning (another partly cloudy day):

I pulled up the swiss chard because it was going nowhere. I think it was just too late in the season to have planted it.
But the buttercrunch lettuce is doing okay:

And the smaller of the two tomato plants is doing pretty well, too.

As this is my first garden, I didn't know squash blossoms were so beautiful.

I've really been fighting off slugs, though. All this rain has brought them out, and every evening I'm off, after I crate Tandi for the night, I go back out and fill little bowls and saucers with beer and position them near the squash and tomatoes, and one near the peppers.
The next morning, I get up about 5:30 and go out and dump the beer, because Tandi has been caught sneaking a few laps after I fill the bowls. Then I go back to bed, and when J-Man gets up, it's safe to let the Little Lush out.

The bell peppers are starting to grow, despite the slug infestation,

but the jalapenos are looking a bit spindly.

Yesterday I worked in the yard for 6 hours, boosting the garden, which has settled a little, with more compost and peat moss before mulching it. Then I planted a clump of Mexican heather, 2 pots of lucious orange Gerbera daisies,

transplanted 2 small hostas I found growing on the edge of the wooded area, weeded the front and center flower beds, spread more compost and peat moss and mulched til I ran out. All in all, it was 8 bags of mulch, and as you can see, it still wasn't enough.

Now that the tiny little flowers in the boxwoods have finished blooming, I can trim them, and it's time to prune the azaleas, too. After that, I'll finish outlining the front and side flower beds and mulch them.

And then I can attack the side yard and the small back yard.
I haven't put up the hammock yet, but I feel the need! It will probably go up this weekend.

Last Fri. night, I was doing some yard clean-up, including raking some old wet leaves out of the drainage gully between the yard and the street. I worked until it got to dark to see which were plants and which were weeds, then talked to my daughter on the phone til almost 11pm. I tumbled into bed and didn't get up (except for one trip out to dump the beer) until 10 the next morning. As I would be going back to bed about 1:30pm before going to work, I just stayed in my nightgown and puttere about the house. Once I got read to take my shower, I discovered a tick fastened to my right breast.




I followed Marcia Hohn's advice for removing it and its little corpse is now interred in a baggie in the freezer, while I do daily skin checks for Lyme's disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Okay, maybe I tend to overreact, but hey, people, I'm a nurse. I get PAID to anticipate the worst!

Anyway, no symptoms yet, but no more gardening until dark, and I conduct my own strip search after yard work now.

I've been reprieved though. I only have to work a 12-hr shift the next two nights. 8^)


MightyMom said...

ticks huh? well, I'm not surprised you're so darn sweet! (couldn't help the bad joke)

I've read that in TX grubs are baby June bugs and the only way to combat them is to put down poison right after the June bugs fly (in June???) so they won't lay their eggs in your yard/garden. I fight them too. Never heard of the beer it working?

now don't forget to come see who won

Catherine said...

Yuck!! A tick! Doesn't it seem though that a tick has to be attached for 36 hours before it can pass on lyme?
Your garden is looking very successful!

jacquie said...

yikes, a tick in the freezer. if we froze all the ticks we removed around here we'd have a freezer full of them. i HATE ticks. you're garden is looking really good. i'm going to plant a few things after we finish moving. i know it's late, but i want to have a garden again sooo bad.

Julie in the Barn said...

My garden is doing great since we finished the deer fence. If I can figure out a way to keep the squirrels from digging it all up, I'll be mighty happy! No slugs or snails to deal with. It's too cold for them to survive in my area. But in my previous life they were a huge problem. Here's my suggestion: Diatomatious Earth or crushed egg shells. The DE is sold at pool supply places. It's sharp and the little buggers don't like to crawl over it but it's non-toxic and biodegradable so safe for pets and the environment. Just sprinkle it around the base of each plant. Crushed egg shells do the same thing but it takes me too long to eat enough eggs to have enough egg shells to do the job!

AnnieO said...

Ticks are revolting, aren't they? Once when I was about 21 my neighborhood friend's mom came over and asked me to remove a tic from her back that she couldn't reach. That was a bit of a jolt to be asked, but I did it. Hope your inspections remain tick-free from now on. Your lasagna is going along pretty good, eh?

audreypawdrey said...

Ticks freak me out, too. Your garden is looking great! I checked out the book on lasagna gardening and I am going to try it too. I just need to figure out where first!