Friday, July 4, 2008

Not a day to celebrate.

Friday 4th July

Rising at 6-30am.

A small thunderstorm deposited a light amount of rain. Probably just about enough to make the day become hot and sticky as the temperatures climb.

Not a day of celebration for an expat Brit.................
We were fighting a war, thousands of miles away from home against a people who believed we had no right to be there and were willing to die for their cause. At the same time, other enemies were taking advantage of our over stretched resources.

It all sounds so familiar. Will we ever learn?


This day our British Union Flag will hang at half mast.

Here's something else not to celebrate......................


................finding Vine Borers inside one of the container Squash plants.


The larvae bore into the base of the plant and literally eat it from the inside out.
One plants is dead and gone. I'm watching the other closely.

Here's more bad news.........................


A second Watermelon suffers bird damage. I need.............................


...........bigger windmills. And if that fails I'll have to get some nets.

My first tomato of 2008 to ripen on the vine.............


..........is a Big Red from my own seed stock.

The first cucumber....................


....and a second is almost ready on the plant.

I've found that cucumbers are much tastier when they are picked around this size. Bitterness creeps into the flavour as they get bigger.

I pulled the last of the potatoes from the front row and a volunteer onion.


The potatoes have not delivered as much as hoped for, mainly due to terribly wet weather and the Woodlice attack. Next year I will hill with earth the traditional way and start the plants earlier. I'm thinking around Groundhog Day. I'll use a floating row cover and keep the plot Woodlice free with the iron phosphate. Maybe it will be 4th time lucky?


I dug over the vacant front half of the plot. One thing about growing spuds is that they really loosen up the soil and even my heavy clay medium takes on a friable texture.
The work takes around 20 minutes and by then I'm soaked in sweat. The humidity is off the scale, the bugs are out in force, so I retire indoors for a shower.................



.....and a light breakfast of low fat milk, toasted French bread, marmalade and a Navel Orange.





Breakfast reading...last years seed catalogue and planning the fall garden.

Possibles include some, but not all, of the following......
Broad Beans. (Windsor)
Brussels Sprouts. (Long island Improved)
Cabbage. (Early Jersey Wakefield)
Cauliflower (Early Snowball)
Kohlrabi (Early Purple Vienna)
And I'm going to start some Catnip (indoors).

3 comments:

Phoebe said...

Thos Vine Borers look a little like maggots. Where do they come from?

Mick said...

The Adult Vine Borer looks a bit like a hornet. It lays it's eggs on the underside of the plant leaves.
When they hatch the larvae crawl down the leaf stem to the base of the plant, bore through into the centre of the vine and have a happy life surrounded by food. Unfortunatly this kills the plant. If you don't remove them they end up over-wintering in the soil and are ready to attack again next year.
Hope this explains and thanks for dropping in Phoebe.

Cam said...

Ugh, so sorry about those bugs. Not fun... Eep and the bird damage on those nice watermelon is sad. I hope they can recover somehow. At least the watermelon will.