Thursday, July 28, 2011

Green Mulch

We're going on day 26 of 100 degree weather. Most of my plants are really feeling the heat and trying to wither on me. On the bright side, literally the bright side of the house even, the planter that's full of weeds is doing pretty well. I pulled half of the weeds out yesterday trying to make it look better since the weeds are growing up and over the little concrete wall I put in.
Today I'll check on the plants to see how much the weeds were protecting the plants I actually wanted.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Blackberry Bushes

I went to my grandparents rescheduled 60th anniversary party recently and found out that blackberry bushes only produce every other year on the same growth. After looking into it I found other plants that also bear fruit, or at least more fruit, every other year.
One that suprised me was pecan trees. I just figured they produced what the season allowed, with some years thinner than others. Come to find out they produce better every other year.
Blueberries also produce every other year.
Some apples produce well every other year. Although the fruit is always edible it isn't always what you're looking for.

What makes trees and plants produce this way? Well, I'll tell you.
Fruit production takes a lot of energy, some plants only produce a single fruit, like pineapple. The stress the plant feels takes a while to come back from and depending on the plant can be over a year long before it's ready to produce well again.
Speaking of pineapples, I'm going to try and I'm going to fail to get my pineapple plant to produce another fruit. The fruit is turning yellow already and softening up. the base looks ok at the moment but from what I've been told it can't make another fruit.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Cucumbers and Other Squashes

I still have cucumber plants growing on the vines outside but so far only one cucumber even tried to grow this season. It isn't that difficult to grow them but having them produce takes a little more polinating and less putting it off for the bees, which I haven't seen very many of this year.
The hops on the other hand don't like the heat at all and are shriveling up and resting, I hope, for the summer. We'll see if they return.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Cooking Curry

We weren't sure what we wanted for dinner but finally decided on red curry. We got the ingredients together although the potatoes were a little soft and only had two carrots we weren't going to be thwarted on our dinner plans. With the cost of food rising we were determined to eat in today.

My wife seemed a little concerned when she got to the onion though since it had decided that a fridge wasn't such a bad place after all to sprout. Fortunately onions are one of the few foods that you can eat every part of no matter what it's wanting to do. I saved the middle to plant though. No need to waste a perfectly good onion sprouting.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Hibiscus Beating the Heat

My hibiscus is successfully beating the heat. It took a little while for it to acclimate but once it did it seems to be able to withstand almost anything. Most of the potted plants are dropping leaves but the hibiscus is sprouting new ones and putting on buds!
I guess I'll wait and see what kind of flowers it puts out.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Tripple Digits

It seems the temperature isn't going to be letting up any time soon which means it's time to really start icing things down. This isn't going to help the tomatoes produce better but it will keep them alive through the heat. Fall tomatoes are better anyway, or so I keep hearing. Personally I can't tell the difference.
The rain barrels in the back will really help too. I can soak some areas and not have the water bill feel it as much. The fig tree has decided that it's been getting enough water and has some ripe figs on it for once in the summer. Usually all it has around this time are little dry knobs where a fig should be.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Heat

The heat has been a bit hot recently and has made it hard to get any of my potted plants to produce anything. The large rain water reserves at the community gardens had a problem and started filling from the city backup line which made them overflow. They got the water turned off but a good bit of water had already escaped.
Just the other day I figured our yard had gotten plenty of rain but alas the rain stopped a block short. My yard was still bone dry when I pulled into the driveway.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Sweet Potato Cuttings

My plot out at UTA still has areas where not much is growing yet. Last Tuesday I got a sweet potato cutting and instructions on how to make it grow. Come to find out I wasn't very farr off on what I was thinking.

1. Clip off 3"-6" sprout.
2. Don't worry if it starts to wilt.
3. Put the cutting in watter for 3 days or until it starts to put out roots.
4. Don't worry if it's still wilted looking.
5. Put it in dirt for at least a week.
6. Don't worry if it's still wilted looking.
7. Transplant to the garden.
8. By now it should be picking back up but don't worry if it's still wilted looking. It will survive.

So far it's in the dirt and doing well. I'll get it in the garden this weekend.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Arlington Community Garden Progress

Last Tuesday I went out to the garden, just on the West side of the UTA campus, to check on the plot. The squash plant was doing pretty well, growing by leaps it seemed. I didn't know how many leaps so I decided to figure it out.
I put a stick in the ground by the end of the longest runner for a marker. That evening I went out and checked on it. In only six hours it had grown two inches. so it's probably growing at a rate of nearly six inches a day. No wonder it's traveled half way across the sixteen foot plot.
It's wreaking a little havoc as it goes, using it's tendrils to grab other plants that are trying to grow themselves. This is the one plant that I really want to grow though and don't mind a little havoc in the process.