Sunday, August 26, 2012

Argiope aurantia

The garden was pretty much a bust this year. I scorched 90% of my tomato seedlings by accident while hardening off. The only ones to survive were the smaller ones I had planted in containers and wrapped in floating row cover:
Black Cherry, Tigerella, Matt's Wild Cherry, Coyote and/or Champagne Cherry. I ended up buying tomato and pepper plants from a nursery. I think they were traumatized from spending the hot spring in a green house. The tomatoes aren't producing at all and the peppers are pathetic. Except the Hungarian Hot Wax. They are going nuts. Serrano and Anaheim? Not so much.

It was a scorcher this summer, DH was strangely obsessed with watering the garden but the output didn't keep up with his input. Bunnies appreciated the exra water and ate the beans, edamame, peas, lettuce, chard and kale before we did.  The cucumbers did really well- Marketmore and a long, spiney Japanese variety- nice and crunchy. I'm giving them away at work, co-workers run like hell when they see me.  Zucchini are doing ok I think I was struck by the dreaded SVB but I ignored it and the plants seemed to recover. Interesting.  I planted 2 melons: supposedly a cantaloupe and a honey dew. I've got 1 melon on each vine and they look exactly the same. Not like a cantaloup or a honeydew - weird shaped greyish green things

I haven't done much with the flower beds this year. We had work done on the house and the back bed got trampled by the workers. I did rescue an oakleaf (or laceleaf- can't remember) hydrangea from someone's curbside. I dragged it home and planted it. I think it will make it.  The front bed by the mail box is pretty much on auto pilot.  I have to pull out the fennel and parsley (in their 2nd year and petering out) and replace them with something.  I also have to dig out the Spiderwort. I'm over it.

DH and I are going to start planning a new veg garden location (the current location doesn't get enough sun and is in the way of the new hockey rink). I say "we" as in the male interpretation of "we". Meaning: I will to dig out some graph paper and start plotting the whole battle plan.  I will figure out how to make the raised beds and a fence, get the lumber and cram it in my Civic. Bring it all home, borrow my brothers saw, try not to lose a limb while taking a day (or three) off of work to get it done and not have it look all jacked up. I will come up with a plan to get the new beds filled with soil. I will start the seeds and harden them off (hopefully with more sucess than this year). I'll figure out a way to get a bale of straw in the Civic. I'll get everything built, filled, planted and DH will water and eat. Teamwork. That's what it's all about.

The little lady in the picture is Argiope aurantia or black and yellow garden spider. Quite lethal looking (DH wanted to kill it immediately) but lethal only to things like mosquitoes and wasps and such. She lives by my mailbox and scares the neighborhood kids.

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