Monday, July 26, 2010

Long Time, No Blog

Well, I have been out of the loop lately! I missed Buffa10 and July Bloom Day, although I have enjoyed everyone else's posts on those topics. My reasons for this are work and life, but nevertheless the garden is carrying along quite well in our hot, sunny summer weather!

The Joe-Pye Weed (Eupatorium maculatum) is in full flower, and I'm happy to report others are enjoying it besides me.

The vegetable garden is a bit of a mixed bag. The tomatoes are growing splendidly at this point, no doubt encouraged by the weather.

I have only three--Amish Paste, Cherokee Purple and Black Krim--but all are bearing lots of as-yet-unripened fruit.

Cherokee Purple is winning the race for first tomato to ripen.

All the peppers are similarly thriving, such as these Thai chili peppers in the container 'o fire (which also includes a jalepeno and habanero).

But what's wrong with my squashes (and cucumbers) again?! All I have are these:

Lots of pretty flowers, but no squash (or zucchini or cucumbers). This cucumber vine is threatening to take over the whole bed, and I had to cut its tendrils off the tomatoes, yet no veggies!!

I have borage planted nearby to draw pollinators, and there's more near the tomatoes (which have obviously been pollinated). There are bees, wasps and flying bugs of all kinds around this garden constantly, so what's going on?

Right next door, the rain garden is coming into its own this year. The cardinal flowers (Lobelia cardinalis) are blooming brightly.

I have reconciled myself to the fact that I created a warm-color-scheme mess in this whole border, but that's just the way it's going to be. I have burgundy daylilies and these red and yellow ones

mixed with ice pink spireas (not pictured, as they are done blooming).

And in the rain garden, swamp milkweeds (Asclepias incarnata) and obedient plants (Physostegia virginiana) mix their pink blooms with the fiery red of the cardinal flowers.

It wasn't the most well thought out color scheme, but hey, all those hues are near each other on the color wheel, right? That's what I'll keep telling myself. The daylilies may get moved one day, but the rain garden plants have to stay where they are and they certainly are great for this purpose. They're absorbing our sudden and infrequent downpours and thriving beautifully, plus there have been monarchs galore around the milkweeds; I'm not about to lose all this ecological value over some shallow stylistic considerations. Once I realized that, I got very lazy about my plans to move the spireas, so pink and red this border may remain!

Of course now that I have the garden weeded and a second round of lettuce seeds just planted, I'll be leaving again for a 10-day jaunt late next week. What do you do when you're away from the garden? Is it acceptable to ask someone to water for you? And what's up with those squashes??


garden girl said...

Good to see you back Rose! Sometimes blogging has to take a back seat to life. Looks like lots of life in your gardens! Love the cardinal flower, and love the butterfly shot, and love your nodding onions header.

Cutworms got my first cucumber seedlings, and the second planting here is just starting to flower. I had tons last year, so it's kind of dissapointing. Mine did great in part sun.

The squash, although they did finally produce a few fruits, about took over the world (well, at least the trellis,) so I reluctantly decided not to grow them this year. They seem to really need full, blazing sun to be fully productive. It's still plenty early for both cukes and squash though. They do seem to take a while to get going, but once they do, hopefully they'll be very productive for you.

Nothing wrong with a pink and red color scheme. Nature does it, so why can't you!

Rose said...

Welcome back, Rose. I would guess that by the time you come back from your trip that you will have cucumbers and squashes galore. My cucumbers are invading the whole garden, and for a long time I wondered, too, if I would get any fruit. In the past week, though, I have picked so many that I'm looking for pickle recipes:) Sometimes all they need is patience--something I'm lacking with my tomatoes, lots of fruit but none ripening yet.

As for color schemes, I've decided they don't really matter. If a plant is happy where it is, I say leave it! Congratulations on all your monarchs on the milkweed. If the pollinators are visiting, then your garden is doing well!

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

I bet it is just that the squash isn't quite ready. The tomatoes are looking great. (I love the "pot o'fire" name for the container of hot peppers.) I like the new header; are those some of the Allium cernuum I gave you?

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