Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Dog Days of Summer Gardening

Well, the dog days of summer are upon us and nowhere is that more evident than in our little vegetable garden. As you know, it is our first year of trying to grow some of our own food. Unfortunately, it has not gone as well as we had hoped for. Even though it is only late August a number of our plants are already spent. I had to pull out our three zucchini plants today. I thought we might get one or two more but the last one that looked promising just stopped growing and then withered and died.

We did finally however get a watermelon. For months, all we have had is vines and then flowering vines but not a melon in sight. Then, suddenly, as if my magic a few little melons started to appear on the vines. We have one that is now the size of a softball. May be in September, it will be ready to harvest.

Even our tomatoes did not do nearly as well as we hoped. Sure, we had some to harvest. Though they were mostly the Grape, Sweet 100s and a few Romas. We got one Gold Medal but it ended up getting some sort of rot or bug damage and died on the vine. And, we did manage to coax a few Jersey Devils (above) to fully fledged and ripen adulthood. But, again, we lost more than we harvested. Our hope had been to have a enough tomatoes to can for the winter but we have barely ended up with enough for a salad. Hopefully, next tomato season will be better.

Ironically, in sunny and hot, Southern California, our chard has been been doing well. How, I don't know. I thought this would have hated the weather but it's going strong. We'll be planting more for the fall.

Our fall hope...the one, lone butternut squash. Why we only have one is a mystery. We're hoping against hope that at least one more will sprout from this plant.

But, we'll keep trying. As soon as the heatwave that we are experiencing breaks, we're going to plant new things for the fall and winter. Though the garden has not producted as many veggies as hoped for, we are not giving up. Plus, Dan and I are new at this, so hopefully we will get better at it.

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