Sanctuary Gardener Update ~ 9/30/13

I think I can safely say the unbearable summer heat is gone. Finally! Temperatures are in the low 80s during the day, but they’re getting down to around 60 at night. Maybe NOW my fall crops will germinate and grow. If only we could get some more rain. We had a half inch this past week, but it’s not enough after several weeks of nothing. That said, I’ve been pretty lazy in the garden the past couple of weeks, and I need to get out and replant several crops and prep the beds to plant the onions, garlic, and spinach next weekend. I think I needed a bit of a break, and I took the holidays as a great time to do that. Now it’s back to work because things are starting to pick up in my garden.

FLOWERING:

As you can see in the photo at the top of the post, my morning glories are still flowering. They’re drawing the butterflies and the bees, along with my veggie flowers.

Black Valentine green bean flowers

Black Valentine green bean flowers

I can’t wait for these flowers to open up! It’s a double bud on my Amish pie pumpkin.

Amish pie pumpkin double flower bud

Amish pie pumpkin double flower bud

FRUITING:

Yesterday, I found the first string beans and lima beans on my plants.

Black Valentine green beans

Black Valentine green beans

Henderson lima bean pod

Henderson lima bean pod

My key lime tree has produced a couple of new fruit along with the others that are still growing towards ripeness.

Key lime tree with fruit

Key lime tree with fruit

PROBLEMS:

I found the first black futsu squash on my plants yesterday. However, my excitement turned to frustration when I cropped the picture for posting here and saw a pickle worm actively boring into the small fruit. Argh! (Look at the bottom right of the fruit.)

Black futsu squash with pickle worm

Black futsu squash with pickle worm

I’m wondering if it’s the pickle worms causing portions of my cucumber vines to shrivel. Something is boring into the vine and killing it from that point onwards.

Cucumber vine damage

Cucumber vine damage

Okay, this guy isn’t a problem, but it’s too bad he doesn’t eat pickle worms. I found him in my sweet pepper bed this past week.

Brown snake in my pepper bed

Brown snake in my pepper bed

GROWING & SURVIVING:

On a happier note, more of my raspberry canes are sprouting new life. I think there’s hope for a spring harvest, afterall.

Raspberry canes

Raspberry canes

Of the nine artichoke plants I had, four have survived – two green ones and two purple ones. With all the rain we had during most of the year, then this long dry spell, I’m surprised they’re alive at all. If they survive the winter, I’ll plant a couple more next spring.

Artichoke bed

Artichoke bed

My peppers are starting to increase production with this cooler weather. This week, I harvested an entire basket full in one day. Here’s my bed of chiles.

Hot peppers

Hot pepper plants

My cilantro is starting to grow well now. It’s liking this cooler weather.

Cilantro

Cilantro

The purple top turnips are looking great!

Purple top turnip plants

Purple top turnip plants

I have a handful of beets growing. (I need to plant more.)

Early wonder beet plants

Early wonder beet plants

What’s happening in your garden?

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