Search Lobsterland

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

My Little Love Apples

So far I've failed to kill the cuttings Julie gave me, so while these guys have a long, long ways to go compared to the four and five foot high monsters growing out back, I may yet have a Berkley Tie Dye and a Japanese Black Trifele or two before the season's over.

Even the one that was just one leaf after I removed the obviously diseased ones is still green, so I assume it's still biologically alive. I moved them to a partially shaded area on Worley's advice, so they could focus on root development. They better not dick around about it, it's July starting tomorrow.

I have more zucchini germination going, too, three plants now. One has some icky looking edges to its leaves, and being it's just starting out, so I wouldn't advise it to buy any green bananas.

Speaking of icky leaves, much more pruning of low branches on the tomatoes and peppers. Whatever perforated my bell pepper plants (both California Wonder and Lilac look like they sustained machine gun fire from a platoon of GI Joes), I hope getting rid of the bottom third of the foliage will keep that critter at bay.

Some of the other peppers are starting to flower, especially the Kung Pao.

And I've got fruit set on fourteen of the fifteen tomatoes in the raised beds. Tigarella has flowers but is holding out on me with actual tomato formation.

I was blown away at how much bigger the Kellog's Breakfast fruits have gotten since Sunday (when I last paid close attention). One is almost baseball sized already.

I am trying to decide whether to water in the morning. Its been a few days since the rain stopped, and the soil at the surface feels dry. Time was, when I grew tomatoes, I figured if the leaves were curling up in the late afternoon, that meant they needed water. Which I gave them, by blasting the leaves with the spray attachment on the garden hose. Knowing what I now know, I realize that's like a homebrewer who doesn't boil his wort, only dumps & stirs malt extract with dried yeast in an unsanitized plastic bucket.

Believe it or not, I actually had tomatoes to eat despite that treatment, so I'm sure I'm over-thinking things here to some extent, but after a few hours stooping to prune and weed and whatnot, and applying fungicide weekly, not to mention the backbreaking work of putting the beds in in the first place. I'm also reasonably sure that the quantity and quality of tomatoes I've grown in those half-assed efforts were far below what I could have achieved and that there was a good deal of luck in my plants surviving at all.

A neighbor managed to kill a couple of her tomato plants by over-watering them (watered them every day even when we got five inches of rain that day), but I'd hate to go too far the other way and put all this expense and effort in for four or five Micro Tom fruits (what I've harvested so far).

And, sadly, the Micro Toms are apparently dead. I don't know what disease they got, and they managed to ripen a few tiny but delicious fruits while dying of it, but they have definitely shuffled off this mortal coil and joined the bleeding choir invisible (as the story goes).

No comments: