Bedford Ramblings
Steve Mills

Garden Club meeting on the Fourth of July? Sure! Come be with us tomorrow!

Posted Monday, June 30, 2014, at 11:45 AM
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  • Kay, I cut two of the Money plants and should have plenty of seed for you. Hope you can make it.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Mon, Jun 30, 2014, at 6:53 PM
  • Anybody want some dill? I have tons of it right now. I also have a couple basil plants I started from seed. They were supposed to be purple Thai, but I think they're licorice basil instead- I don't like licorice, yuc!

    -- Posted by espoontoon on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 5:29 AM
  • I could use some dill to replenish my fading stock. I use it more as a attractant for beneficial and butterflies, which means a lot of it gets eaten.

    I have some small purple basil and what I believe is cinnamon basil that volunteered from last year so I do not know if it is pure.

    I would like to try the licorice. Never had it before but I agree, licorice is not my favorite.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 5:53 AM
  • Just harvested some more red potatoes. Actually they started harvesting themselves by popping out of the soil.

    I took the hint.

    When my one row if yard long beans come in I am going to be swamped. They start out slow but it won't be long before we have bean cake, bean and eggs, bean salad etc.

    A Japanese beetle escaped yesterday. He seemed a little confused since squash is not their main cuisine so it was heading off before I got close enough to given it a hug.:-)

    -- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 7:34 AM
  • I would love to have some dill.........

    Have basil too !......Will bring some strictly Italian Pesto Basil if that would make anyone happy.........Several varieties of Italian Pesto Basil in fact. Have lots of Thai too....Would anyone like that....Grew it for my daughter and she isn't having a garden this year. Just let me know.

    Picked the first Vorlon tomato this morning.........I will build breakfast around it. Built breakfast around half of a HUGE Brad's Beefheart yesterday. Tomato Ambrosia. Had the second half for dinner with spaghetti and clam sauce as the main. Wonderful tomato....I will grow it again. Rich and complex.

    The Clint Eastwood " Rowdy Reds " are coming in....Have two on my island.......They aren't handsome tomatoes...Am a bit curious about the flavor though....There must be a reason they got such high marks.

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 8:20 AM
  • Sounds like we have a good attendance coming to the meeting.

    Thai basil sounds good and strangely, I have not had an Italian basil in a long time so... Yeh, I'd be interested.

    The Vorlon tomato plant sure looks different. No tomatoes yet but plant is healthy. I forgot who got the Clint Eastwood tomatoes. Anyone have babies yet?

    -- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 9:53 AM
  • I got that Clint Eastwood...its in richer soil over at dads so he could also trellis it...its getting there..I think it will be a huge producer...I need oregano if anyone has Cuban oregano that would be grand...I'm looking for that large leaf kind vs the smaller leaf that looks like thyme...haven't planted any herbs this year...maybe it's time to start...after the meeting we can watch the fireworks maybe!

    -- Posted by chefgrape on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 10:33 AM
  • Jealous about the tomato's-mine are still green. I wouldn't mind any Italian Basil plants. I'll bring 2 of the licorice basil. I have one large one planted in a larger container, but I think I'm going to pull it.

    Steve-the dill I'm talking about is already 5' tall. I was asking if anyone could use it for canning, cooking, freezing-whatever. Too late for transplanting...

    -- Posted by espoontoon on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 12:37 PM
  • Aah, that thought crossed my mind too. I am sure Barbara is pickling something!

    -- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Jul 1, 2014, at 4:22 PM
  • Some of my tomatoes and peppers got a big dose of pineapple, banana and eggshells this morning. I've gotten lazy about grinding up my smoothie byproduct (boy, that sounds fancy, smoothie byproduct).

    Anyway, I peeled a full pineapple for some future smoothies, two bananas and threw in about a dozen eggshells from Debbi's bake-a-thon last night, ground it up and poured it around some plants this morning.

    I hope the worms will enjoy and the resulting poop will feed the plants. They must feel better already.

    I through in a freshly picked yellow squash into that smoothie too but there was no byproduct.

    Speaking of yellow squash, I now have more than I have grown on the past few years. Why? Not really sure but espoontoon have you seen less squash bugs? I was ready for them and so far, very few.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Jul 2, 2014, at 9:46 AM
  • I am on John Scheeper's email list and they sent a good reminder just now about planting your perennial plants by seed now for next year beauty.

    I've started some of those butterfly bushes Kay but that would be a good example. Plus, if you stop by the meeting on Friday you can plant the Chinese Money Plant seeds when you get home.

    I hope you don't think I am picking on you, but it just applies to the post from Scheeper's. "Growing perennials and biennials from seed a year in advance in early summer is inexpensive, remarkably easy and incredibly rewarding."

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Jul 2, 2014, at 10:54 AM
  • Steve- I haven't had a problem with squash bugs. It is the borer worms that are the reason I hadn't been able to grow squash in the last 4 years. I guess I got lucky this year so far, and have planted all my squash next to dill It's been great having this abundance of squash this year, but the borer worms have already killed a beautiful spaghetti squash, a couple of zucchinis, and are currently killing a cushaw. I'm sure all my squash will die from them soon, but at least I had a harvest. Maybe the Winter slowed them down but it didn't stop them. I have squash bugs but they have never killed my plants like those blasted worms...

    Rant over. Sorry.

    -- Posted by espoontoon on Wed, Jul 2, 2014, at 1:00 PM
  • I remember the borer problem but I thought it was both. For some reason, I have not had a borer in years. Maybe PITA eats them:-)

    I just repotted some of the basil. I should know if they will survive by meeting time.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Jul 2, 2014, at 1:08 PM
  • My wife is the main okra eater in the house but one row of okra was overpowering so this year I did not plant any. Since she likes to fry it, I did not think a grocery store okra was any different than a fresh one from the garden.

    BUT, now that I am not growing it, I find out she really like the fresh from the garden quality. Guess who just planted a row of okra? A little late, maybe, but peace in the kingdom is priceless. :-)

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Jul 2, 2014, at 3:16 PM
  • espoontoon, you've got me paranoid about squash borers. I had something buzzing the garden this evening and it seemed to be stopping on the squash more than others, so I kept stalking it.

    It appears to be a sawfly. Not a good insect but not the dreaded vine borer so I let it live. I'm not sure I had a choice unless I brought in the long-range missiles. It would not let me get too close.

    I did find a stink bug but it was easy to dispatch between thumb and forefinger (with the leaf in between).

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Jul 2, 2014, at 8:28 PM
  • The garden cub meeting announcement hit the paper today. That should help those who do not get online. Talk it up if you get the chance.

    While I won't have a prepared presentation, we will have the internet available so if you have a tough plant or insect question, we will track it down until we get the answer.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Jul 2, 2014, at 8:32 PM
  • How do you store all your garlic that you harvested?

    -- Posted by espoontoon on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 6:09 AM
  • I have not mastered weaving so after drying in the field for a few days I cut he tops off about an inch up, then out them in recycled orange and lemon bags that we get when we buy the fruit at the grocery.

    I did not clean them much, just brush off the dirt and cut back the roots a little. Right now the bags are hanging in the garage but with this humidity I really need to separate some more so they don't mold.

    When I do that, (maybe this weekend) I will separate the "seed" cloves from what we will use in the house then move them into the coolest, darkest room of the house. If I had a root cellar, that would be good but air circulation will be important to keep from rotting.

    In September or early October the seed cloves will go back in the garden for next year.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 6:36 AM
  • I should add that right now I have too many crammed in the bags. Even though they are in mesh bags the airflow is not sufficient to reduce rotting.

    Another reason for separating and sorting.

    I will lose a few anyway because they had imperfections or were bruised so I want to reduce the risk as much as possible by smaller batches, more air flow and more separation between bulbs.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 6:46 AM
  • What determines the "seed" cloves from the "eating" cloves?

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 9:55 AM
  • I was hoping you could do a demonstration of the weaving method. I tried last year, but it didn't work out...

    -- Posted by espoontoon on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 11:43 AM
  • I will be happy to........Just bring the longest strands of garlic and I will give it a go............

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 12:24 PM
  • Palindrome, I started to answer you over an hour ago, but....

    Anyway, I choose my "seed" cloves by choosing those that are damaged or (in my opinion)too small to store well. Small ones seem to dry up or rot faster than larger ones.

    I leave them as a whole bulb until planting time unless one section has started to rot. Some say that If I choose the small ones, I am "breeding" smaller and smaller end results. Could be, but it is hard to ignore nice fat garlic when it comes time to cook. :-)

    -- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 1:00 PM
  • Yeh, I've watched YouTube videos and it seemed simple enough, until I tried it. Must be too simple. I never got a good tight weave that could support itself.

    I used to do macrame, but that did not seem to help. :-)

    -- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 1:02 PM
  • I'll be bringing some Love in a Mist (Nigella) seed pods if anyone is interested. I think I reseeded enough for me just be gathering these.

    A few years ago Lucretia wanted some and mine were not ready yet. If you want some now, I got'em.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 1:07 PM
  • I have never really done it either even though I have braided many things. There is, I am sure, a learning curve but one way or another we will get it done......... And maybe even have a good laugh.

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 4:55 PM
  • Well, I am not sure how I missed this but a borer has apparently attacked one plant. I say apparently because the stem is split but after I slit it I could find no borer nor frass, but I slit the stem anyway, packed it with soil and watered it well so we'll see how that goes.

    I considered removing the young squash to relieve some pressure on it while it heals. If it shows stress tomorrow, I may still remove them.

    I also found a live hatch of squash bugs and I am pleased to say the mix of water, Dawn, horticultural oil, garlic and diatomaceous earth kill the little buggers BAM!

    Some say soap alone would have done it but I am not going to mess with a wining combination. Besides the mix without garlic was not getting the flea beetles so now I have a more rounded spray.

    I also sprayed an adult squash bug and waited and waited. It walked around like it was drunk so I sprayed it some more and finally, it too was dead. A June bug (beetle) also staggered like a drunken sailor but I could not wait long enough to confirm if it too died or not.

    Since there are a lot of beneficials and a couple of toads working the garden, I am not going to try to spray everything, mainly the squash bugs right now.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Jul 3, 2014, at 7:51 PM
  • I'm interested in a few nigella seeds...I still need some color in my quaint flower/tomato bed...I'm going to snap a few pictures on the Ipad to show what it looks like....it's coming along right nicely for what I was able to do....been wondering if I should throw a box of red wiggler worms in it to break up the soil a little more...I've been watering a lot...hope I don't drown them.

    -- Posted by chefgrape on Fri, Jul 4, 2014, at 12:04 AM
  • Usually, if you add organic material the worms will come. If they are your local, native worms even better.

    I've found that red wigglers eat and move on to richer territory. They actually do not till the soil much. Your natives do the hard work.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Fri, Jul 4, 2014, at 12:51 PM
  • Thanks for the info....I planted the basil this morning and hopefully will get the horse fertilizer mixed with some topsoil to build around that broken tomato stem...mt dad gave me some round wire trellis baskets, those will sure help...

    I think I finally ate one of the best cupcakes ever made, not over sweet and very moist...Thank you Mrs. Mills your the best!

    -- Posted by chefgrape on Sat, Jul 5, 2014, at 9:34 AM
  • Ditto on the Red Velvet Cupcakes appreciated even more than you know since my stove has died and when I get an urge to bake I can't......

    Thank you so much...........

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Sat, Jul 5, 2014, at 6:42 PM
  • That stove is still dead?

    I passed it along to Debbi. Thanks!

    -- Posted by stevemills on Sun, Jul 6, 2014, at 5:15 PM
  • Bought a single portable induction burner but the ovens are still in Memphis waiting for me to pick them up and have them installed.....

    Probably later in the month or August......

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Sun, Jul 6, 2014, at 8:16 PM
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