Friday, May 31, 2013

I went to the doctor,

I went to the mountains
I looked to the children, I drank from the fountain
There's more than one answer to these questions
Pointing me in a crooked line
And the less I seek my source for some definitive
Closer I am to fine
-Indigo Girls

I went to my therapist's office. It looks like this:

My therapists look like this:
She just listens 

but tells me a lot

I think this is my equivalent to "the man cave" and I should get to grant permission to enter. 
It's amazing what a little green time can do. 

And so....

I really needed to get in the eggplant and squashes, but...I've come to the conclusion there is only one successful way for me to have eggplant and squash fruit and that is tulle. Yes, that obnoxiously itchy stuff that you find on fancy wedding and debutante dresses. And so, you can find it at the fabric store. Last year I tried some various hoop concoctions and knew I needed to make some revisions this year. I was thinking about a simple structure over which to drape the tulle when suddenly a treasure appeared in my neighbor's trash. A four-fold room divider or whatever the name is called. Kid and I stripped off the paper and I built this:
Eggplant playpen?

Because there were 4 pieces I can build 2 of these structures (6ft long); one for the squash and one for the eggplant. This was my first one. I hope I got the eggplant in before more rain. I did get sprinkled on a wee bit. *note: we are still having a lot of rain. Like, flood stage level rain. 
Squash problem = squash borers. Eggplant problem: flea beetles.

A newer plant (for me) I've tried to start in the garden from seed without luck last year is Asparagus Pea. Here are some babies:

And speaking of peas. We are getting our first in this week, along with a few strawberries. I hope the rain doesn't ruin the berries, like it has the sweet cherries. 
First peas.
Other current events:
We had our first swarm of the season last week. This one landed in the Possum Haw. 

And Uncle Kenny came and shook her out.

 And inspected to make sure he got the Queen in the box.

 The Wafer Ash was in flower. It has an incredible smell. It would be nice if there were always something aromatic in the yard. This plant follows the Miss Kim Lilac and precedes the "peach rose" and the Veilchenblau rose, which are both in bloom now. 
The Wafer Ash also makes for a great pollinator plant. Lots of varieties of bees and things come to this. I've noticed a lot of small weevils on umbelliferous (umbrella shaped) flowers lately. 

A viceroy feeding on Viburnum. Monarchs lack the black stripe on the lower wings, whereas Viceroys have one. This butter would watch me. If I got close he or she would make a circular flight and return.  

This climbing rose essentially took support from a neighboring peach tree and hence I call it the Peach Rose. It is an heirloom rose. I can't recall which, but the Alchemist rose does grow among this one as well. 
To give you another perspective of the size of this beauty. It is the height and width and greater than the size of a standard peach tree. This perfumes one side of the yard while Veilchenblau does the other.

Sean and I went hiking and I found a couple of Kentucky Coffee Tree pods and soaked the seeds. 
I rubbed each one on sandpaper first to break down the coat and then soaked them for a day and planted in 1 gallon pots. I think one has germinated so far.

Maters planted:
I failed to record it, but I planted my maters on May 16th (I think. That's when I downloaded the pics anyway)
 The important items when planting include: pencil & paper to take notes (which I will lose later) a cup of joe, a trowel and some filler flower. I planted nasturtiums along the front and between each mater.

 I also sprinkle a little of this in with each plant.
I get it at Rural King, but I think you can buy it at box stores now.

 Wee nasturtiums
Love the leaves

 I plant the maters in a zigzag pattern to maximize space use
and you can see I draw the zz and write an abbreviation of the mater on a piece of paper
like this:
Then...if I'm on top of it, which I was (this year) I record the list on my puter. 
My list includes:
Striped Roman, Gypsy, Bali, Ivory Egg, German Lunchbox, Purple Russian,                                 
Black Plum, Mortgage Lifter, White Queen, Dr Wyches, Japanese Black Trifele   
The litter buckets you see above are my no-rain watering system. I poke 2 pinholes in the bottom of each of these. Fill the buckets with water, loosen the tops and the water very slowly drips over many hours. Sometimes the holes get clogged (from algae) and you have to repoke them. You will know which are clogged by the ones that do not drain. duh.                                                              
And in inside gardening news:                

 We (er, I) grew Elm Oyster Mushrooms that I hope will flush a few times inside and then I will inoculate the garden soil with the remains and hope I can establish a colony in the veg garden. Almost all flowering plants have relationships with fungi or bacteria where both benefit, so it is good to have beneficial mushrooms, other fungi and bacteria in your soil. Everyone will be happier and healthier for it.

That's it. Peace out.

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