My employer has kept me very busy lately, so busy that I was unable to get my garden in early. The good thing about
how I garden is that there is a lot of year round stuff, so I was not without food resources. Lots of herbs, Swiss chard
lasted all winter, the garlic is big and happy, and the flower and shrub end of things pretty well takes care of itself. My
across the street neighbor swears by never planting tomatoes until Easter, so I'm running right on schedule according
Last year's horrible cut worm invasion was nipped in the bud by beneficial nematodes, and they continued to do their work
over the last year. A friend dug and weeded my garden, and when I asked him if he'd seen any cut worms, he indicated
that one end of the garden might have had some. I put out beneficial nematodes again this year and concentrated more
heavily on that end.
Since I was paying to have someone work in the garden I asked him to level it - don't leave the raised beds in place.
They were beveled piles of dirt, no hard edges, so it wasn't difficult. This month I've been reshaping and planting along
a different orientation. It's always a challenge to keep excellent drainage and on the same end where he thought he saw
some cut worms I had some drainage issues last summer. The only tomatoes to be hit by mealy bugs were in that area.
With new beds, different orientation, and put in a little taller on the lower end of the garden, I hope to have healthier soil
to keep plants looking good all summer.
I've sprinkled a mix of rock powders to improve the soil and some dry molasses to boost the biological activity. This will get
worked in when I plant. I also have my homemade compost that will be going on and in the garden (it was getting late as I
took these photos and I hadn't shoveled up any of my compost yet. I've since mixed it with the rock powder combination).
In the "waste not want not" category of organic gardening, last year I identified some cans of fish in my pantry that were
past their shelf date. Rather than throw them away I kept them till now, when I was going to be putting in bedding plants.
I emptied a couple of cans at a time into the food processor and made a paste that I added some water to for consistency.
The resulting mix did make my kitchen smell rather fishy but was easy and inexpensive fertilizer, considering I was going
to discard the old fish.
A couple of dollops in each hole, a little dirt over the top so I wasn't setting the plants directly on fish, and then cover it up
as usual. I've made a note of which plants in the garden got the fish so I can compare growth (or harm) later. Fingers
crossed that the fish doesn't attract scavengers.
Barely getting going, no mulch in there yet. I'm going to try mulching with some leaves I've been bagging this spring. The
plants were all standing this morning, so the cutworm problem does seem to have been taken care of. Last year the
morning after I planted it was like a little lumberjack had gone around and felled each plant.
More reporting on the yard and garden this year hopefully - the last couple of years were occupied with the colossal waste
of time of dealing with an Internet troll stalker. Several of his victims banned together to take down the fake sites and he
seems to have moved on. Perhaps to jail. That's all I'm going to say about this here, he arose from an unrelated forum, and
I'd much rather be in the garden than looking for fake versions of myself on the Internet!