The fire causing all of the smoke in our neck of the woods is 81% contained, 19% remains out of control; I have to keep reminding myself of that. The firefighters remain in grave danger, it’s not over until it’s over. (Thank you Yogi Berra) The smoke is clearing a bit Mount Diablo is now visible at 16 miles to the East, it remains obscure but it is plainly our local Mountain. High temps will keep some of the smoke aloft until the cool night arrives and the smoke sinks to the ground as all smoke eventually does. There is hope no more fires will start, but the reality is the season has only just begun.
The Garden was planted late, luckily we enjoy a long growing season extending from mid-April until some years Thanksgiving. The Jalapeno Peppers grow until Christmas making a red and green decoration. All green peppers will eventually turn red, on some plants numerous red and green bulbs hang from the stems making them very Holiday appearing.
I end up with a lot of volunteer Pumpkins which ends up being my own fault due to feeding them to the Earth Worm farm. A few Pumpkin seeds are always over looked which is a problem when the castings are used as fertilizer. Seeds germinate well in it but when used in the cucumber, squash, or watermelon box it’s difficult to ascertain what the plant is. I am fairly confident the photo above depicts a Zuchinni as it is a bush, my wild Pumpkins are vines, time will tell.
The Potatoes this year have surprised me, generally if I plant them around late May they won’t germinate until the weather cools. This year many of them are coming up in a robust way, sprouting flowers; as soon as they die the spuds will be dug up. It appears it may be a good year for the Nightshades.
and I planted Giant Pumpkins in a Worm Farm bin I am not using right now, or for the foreseeable future. He lined the bottom with 6 inches of wood chips followed with 10 inches of Compost. We made a Pyramid in the center with Worm Castings, poked two holes in it and planted 5 seeds in each. Followed with a soaking of water then Worm Tea was added to help germination. I bought seeds marketed as Giant Pumpkins, I’m sure they will be huge but short of competition size. That’s fine with me as I’m sure there is a learning curve involved with growing them. A 300 pounder would feed my farm for a long time. I will give it to one of the Grand-kids to carve, then feed it to the you know who’s.
He repeated the planting method for the Watermelons, they are nothing fancy just a good Jubilee melon of a decent size. I placed in the Pro side of the list that it will supply plenty of seeds for cultivation next year. Pumpkins, Zucchini, Watermelon, and Potatoes are my favorite crops….. but then Peppers, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, and Peaches are as well.
Now the good part, weeding and waiting.
Jacques Lebec Follow the Fork in the Road