Archive for the ‘planting’ Category

Troubles in the Garden….

Here is a shot of today’s harvest! I am getting so many yummy yellow pear tomatoes it’s so great. This basket went next door to PeeK’s (Paul, Kerry, Erin and Ellen). We are planning to make stuffed bell peppers for dinner tomorrow. I found a great brown rice recipe that we’ll try. We are also going to make some more salsa as the first batch was great and everyone wants more!

I am having trouble with my red tomatoes. I had to tear out two plants because the tomatoes were orange for about 3 weeks now and not turning red. The entire plants looked like they were dying, I think they have blight. That is a vegetable disease that attacks the plant and you have to remove it or it will spread to all of your tomatoes, so we’ll see. I hope that is the end of that but honestly my red tomatoes aren’t doing too well. Here is some info on blight: Humble Gardener on Blight

My tomatoes probably got it because I planted too many, too close (they need air circulation!) and watering them on the foliage. I know better! Since there are so many in my garden they are growing like wildfire and they are all on top of each other etc… Not allowing any air circulation, so live and learn…..I just hope the rest make it okay.

Finally landed a job 🙂 I start with United Health Care Group on 8/2 so that will probably help the garden too — I probably over tend it.


Onions are nearing harvest…..

These red onions I am growing are looking so healthy! I do wish I had not planted them all at the same time, I got a little over excited ……. I should have at least done them a week apart – oh well live and learn. I have read that they will be ready to pick when the green parts there begin to droop and lay on the ground, according to when I planted them they should be ready to harvest in about a week so we’ll see. I also have to read more about harvesting them because some onions need to dry out before they can be eaten too, so more research is required.

The big question is: Why do onions make you cry?

When you cut into an onion, the cell walls are damaged releasing a sulfur compound called propanethial-S-oxide which floats into the air. This compound is converted into sulfuric acid when it comes in contact with water which is why it stings your eyes. Chilling inactivates the propanethial-S-oxide so it does not float into the air. Thus, no tears.

To keep eyes dry when chopping onions, try chilling peeled onions in the refrigerator before chopping. To get the onion smell off of your hands, rub with lemon juice or vinegar. To freshen onion breath, chew a little parsley or a coffee bean.

Enjoy your onions!

Charlie wishes you a great week! Don’t worry about the garden, he’ll keep an eye out.

The corn has been planted!

Well I dug up the row in my garden that was drown by the rains and the fact that we are missing a rain gutter on that side so I have an entire row to figure out what to plant. I do have quite a few seedlings that are ready to be planted so there won’t be any trips to the nursery. I am pretty sure there will be a zucchini and some green beans filling up that row. For a few days I am leaving the dirt I dug up to dry out – it is the most wet soil of my entire garden. I also have a big bag of 3 cubic feet of soil that I will use when planting there.

I also weeded the far corner of the garden and planted corn. My neighbor had given me a baggie full of organic corn seeds that he grows every year. So I planted three small rows, which also follows along the rule to rotate crops – my corn was not in this area last season. Emmitt, my garden gnome, moves around the garden and guards plants in need of a little attention. So of course, he is now by the corn.

On the flower front all the beauty’s are doing great. Both my front yard flower beds and the backyard one are doing very well. Remember to keep the soil moist when planting seeds — until you see the seedlings reach the surface then you can back off the watering a little bit so the roots have plenty of oxygen as well.

Enjoy your day!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


So many plants, so little time…

More is better right? One day I hope to have so many little plants that I can have garage sales for plants! I think that would be a great money maker, okay so let’s do this. Oh before we begin — the slide show at the end also walks you through this, visually.

One definition of propagation is multiplication or increase, as by natural reproduction. Taking a piece of a healthy plant and planting that piece to make yet another plant; a simple way of obtaining copies or clones of a plant you like. If only it were that simple! There are a few different ways to propagate as you will find when doing more research but my favorite is stem cutting and that is the focus of this update. I will show and tell you exactly how I do it and its results but know that there is a ton of professional advice out there to walk you through it as well. A great reference I am using for this post and do refer to is located at the bottom of this post for your convenience.

Find a plant you would like to propagate. There are official lists on the net about which plants work well and which don’t but you know what, I try whatever plant I want – and it’s true some grow and some don’t! It’s only a loss of your time because if it doesn’t grow you just toss the stem into your compost and try again! You can always try the same plant too – there are variables that could make it work the 2nd time so never give up!

Pruners or scissors work best when taking a cut or “slip” as my Dad would say. I am going to call them slips for future reference. Cut about ½ inch above a leaf node, they say roots develop more easily from the bottom portion of the stem between two nodes. Plan to plant this piece soon or you will need to put it in a water bucket if not planting right away. Also if you are out and want to take a slip from some place away from home be sure to wrap it in a wet paper towel and put it in a zip lock, it can stay in a fridge for up to a week.

When you are ready to plant there is also a lot of documentation on what type of soil to plant it in. For me, yup – a nice, good quality potting soil is what I use. I would also like to try sand and/or organic kitty litter they say both work very well but for now it’s potting soil.

Next you should get some root tone. It’s a white powder that helps your chances of this little slip growing into a plant of its own. You will find root tone at your local nursery – a pic of the one I have is below, but I am using the white bottle of tone my Dad gave me first so you’ll see both in the pics. Take the wet slip, dip it in the white powdered root tone, get it covered with tone about an inch or more – then tape the slip against the bottle to remove any excess. Take your other finger, pencil or screwdriver (the dollar store!) make a hole in a container of nice, new, dry potting soil – drop the slip in. Then water it easily and put it in the sun.

Remember this baby needs to be watered once a day – lightly and if it’s hot where you are water it at the end of the day too, but don’t wet the plant itself just so water reaches the tone. Now, if you pray – start!

You never know what plants will propagate and which won’t and as mentioned earlier if you try a plant and it doesn’t work then try it again if you want.

How will you know it didn’t work? Your little slip will die ….. simply remove it and try again! It’s very fun here are some pics from the plants I worked on today, enjoy!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

How to propagate plants! Great Guide!

I will keep you up to date on these slips and how they do. I am hoping at least 2 or 3 out of the 10 (give or take) make it. It also makes you keep a keen eye out when visiting a friend that has a beautiful garden.

Special thanks to my sister Kerry for letting me slip her beautiful plants and photograph her yard!

Challenge: Grow your own potatoes…

Project: grow potatoes from your own!

I am following my Dad’s instructions so here goes. Every Irish person MUST grow potatoes in their garden! Here is how:

Put a few potatoes in a brown bag under your sink for 10 days. When you look at them after 10 day they should have sprouted. Then cut them like in the picture to include an eye or sprout in each piece. Well in the photo you will notice I cut them all a little different because I wasn’t real sure – some small than others etc… Then plant in your garden 2″ deep, one at a time about a foot apart. Dad says eventually a green leafy plant will grow out then a white flower will appear, then the white flower will fall off and die. It is then you dig up your spuds!

Up for the challenge? I AM!! 🙂 Let’s do this! Mine are ready to go into the ground tomorrow — we’ll see!

THIS JUST IN:::::::::::Make sure when you plant them you plant them in hills. I will post pics later today when I get mine into the ground.

Also:

I just found this website that talks all about what we are trying: http://tinyurl.com/ydyq8nj