Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Front Porch Figs

This is my fig tree that I have had for about 3 years now. During spring and summer it lives on my front porch. During fall and winter it lives in my garage.

So far this year is looking to be the best year, if everything that is on it now will mature. There is roughly 70-100 figs on this little tree.

Interesting enough, when i was taking pictures this morning i noticed that there were all of these stink bugs in the tree. Im not sure what they are doing but my new goal is to eliminate their existence in this tree.
I love figs and they are difficult to come by. That is why i grow them.

In this picture if you can click on it to make it bigger and zoom in on the branch you will see some stink bugs. I have also found an egg or 2 so they may be reproducing right there. I know i have killed young ones on this tree already.

Again with the powdery mildew

The title really says it all.

This isnt my first time having Powdery Mildew back in 2009 and really 2010 it attacked me. So this just means that every year that i have attempted to grow something in the Cucurbitaceae plant family, that it has died from powdery mildew. This goes for all of my cucumbers, squashes (including pumpkins), and melons (including watermelons).

So how do i kill it and how do i prevent it?

My understanding is that once you have it you can not get rid of it.

I have read in some places that its due to hot temperatures and the leaves getting wet. this doenst really make sense to me cause its always going to be hot. its the summer! and its going to ran. So if this is the case every farmer is doomed.

Things that we have tried to do: Baking Soda, Neem and cutting away the infected leaves.

This is what GardenGuides.com has to say about managing powdery mildew.
  • In most cases, good cultural practices will adequately control powdery mildew:
  • Select powdery mildew resistant varieties. This is particularly true of roses. For lawns, shade tolerant grasses such as creeping red fescue can be planted.
  • Plant in full sunlight in a well-drained area.  
  • Do not crowd plants. Air flow and ventilation will discourage mildew growth.
  • Powdery mildew thrives where high rates of nitrogen have been used. High nitrogen promotes tender leaf formation, causing dense stands that are more susceptible to infections. Adequately fertilize but avoid stimulating succulent growth. Organic fertilizers or slow-release formulations of lawn fertilizers are good choices.
  • Prune infected plants to get rid of infected parts and increase airflow. If the infestations are severe, remove and destroy the plants that are infected.
  • Disinfect your pruning tool in a bleach solution of one part household bleach to four parts water after each cut.
  • Watering plants in the morning gives the plants the rest of the day to dry off, discouraging establishment of diseases, including powdery mildew.

What do you know or think about this?  any information will be much appreciated.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

where did these tomatoes come from

I know it has been a while since i have posted anything about the garden at our townhouse. Since last years garden failed so bad i hadn't posted anything of relevant value here. So lets now move past that bad memory.

There is one thing that has happened now 3 years in a row, so i know its not a fluke, is i keep having these tomatoes come up from where i had them growing the year before. This really isnt a complaint but more of a learning experience.

My normal routine is that in January or February i start my seeds. By May they are ready to plant. They're Not the biggest and thickest tomato plants but i know they will get bigger and stronger once in the ground. And ill be, if these tomatoes from previous years haven't seeded them selves and come up stronger and better looking in a shorter amount of time then the once i started growing in Jan.

Case in point: this year i decided to do quality over quantity. My seeded tomoatoe plants look really healthy this year but those dang feral tomatoes are already putting on nice red tomatoes.

I think next year im going to go out and label where i place my seeds so i know whats growing and attempt to start them from the ground. I have to assume that this may be successful due to all the seuccesful feral tomatoes i have growing now.

random photo: one of our small raised gardens.