Saturday, July 16, 2011

Latest Garden Update!

  Well it has been sometime since I've updated my blog. I guess it has been something like trying to figure out what is right and what is wrong that has kept me busy (and a bunch of other projects). Something that got me into a frustrating situation was too much compost in the garden. I had plants that were huge but no veggies. One tomato plant had lots of fruit but the plant was growing so big that it had to be constantly trimmed back. It was a volunteer which should have been taken out to begin with, it was most likely a hybrid which wasn't very tasteful and it developed all kinds of problems. The tomatoes at first were OK but then they began to have problems like partly ripening and starting to rot on the vine. Some tomatoes grew OK while others started to rot while they were green. Some of the tomatoes grew big and were OK while some were half size and maybe OK, maybe not. The squash plants grew huge but no squash. The one watermelon plant had some melons but they never grew to any size, one grew about the size of a softball. Even some of the flowers that were put in the garden temporarily to get started stunted or died. Well it turned out to be too much of a good thing. The compost is so good the plants over did it and or just died (perhaps they were burned up by too much available nutrients). Whatever, I am now removing all the excess over grown plants and amending the soil. I didn't want to use the local dirt as it is red clay but so far it is all I've got so I am mixing it 50/50 with the coffee and sugar cane compost. I may take and heat the clay soil to kill the weed seeds and other stuff I don’t want. I have plenty of free fire wood so I think that will be the best way for me to go. I've been saving egg shells to add calcium into the soil. I will grind those as fine as I can get them with a blender and mix that in at the same time. Once I get all that mixed in thoroughly then I will see where I can send a soil sample for testing. It doesn't pay to get into too big a hurry. I have a sword bean plant that I want the seeds from. As soon as the pods are ready to take then the plant comes out and everything else in that half of the garden. I’ll mix in the red clay and top everything off with a generous amount of egg shell powder.
 I plan on going to the Ark Herb Farm the 30th for plants and will stop elsewhere and look for some 3” pots for starting transplants. I’m hoping to get something done on my starting soil block press now that other projects have been completed. Once I get the kinks out of that then no more needing of starting pots. I’ve been sprouting parakeet seed in aluminum baking pans for the parakeets in my window greenhouse and am very happy in how fast they sprout. With the compressed starting soil blocks the sprouts won’t ever get their roots disturbed, once the plant is ready to transplant the whole block goes into the garden soil.
  Oh yeah, the chickens and turkeys are doing great. It is time to pen up the holiday turkeys and plump them up. Besides that the two toms are fusing over the hens and that can get very noisy.
  I’ll get the camera out and take photos of the ongoing projects.

So much to do, so little time!


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