Bedford Ramblings
Steve Mills

A beautiful rainy day. Maybe only a gardener or naturalist can appreciate that, but......

Posted Friday, October 10, 2014, at 12:48 PM
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  • As I watched the rain, I also appreciated the squash, okra, tomatoes and beans still putting out flowers in the hope that they can produce one more harvest before killing frosts hit. If you already experienced one, my condolences, but we avoided it, narrowly.

    Two late season surprises are my eggplants and figs. I was sure the figs had been set back too far by our cold this past winter to get ripe ones this season, but in the last few days they are filling out and starting to turn brown. If we can go another week without frost, they will pull it off.

    The eggplants will not set fruit this year but they are really looking healthy, especially when I think back on how hard they were hit this year by flea beetles. The ones that are growing now were pitiful skeletons in foam cups that I could not bring myself to discard, so I planted them anyway. They are rewarding me for my faith in them and as a result, I will give them another chance.

    In fact, they might be my first successful eggplants next year since they will be bigger and stronger (I hope) than the new seedlings. Supposedly, older eggplants can survive flea beetle attacks better. I will move these healthy specimens into pots before our first killing frost. They survived the last big chill into the high 30's a few weeks ago so 50's for lows in the greenhouse should be a cake-walk.

    I don't expect much bug problem because of all the ladybugs we get in the greenhouse and house. They are already starting to show up. Who knows, if they flower, the ladybugs might do some pollinating for me and we will have fresh eggplant for a winter meal!

    -- Posted by stevemills on Fri, Oct 10, 2014, at 12:48 PM
  • Dad gum it! I went back out with this new wave of rain and noticed one of my gutters have become clogged. I just cleaned them about two weeks ago but I sure not getting up there right now!

    -- Posted by stevemills on Fri, Oct 10, 2014, at 12:49 PM
  • This rainy day was great, I woke around 5 this morning at I may have opened the windows for the week. It's a perfect temperature out there and I'm hoping it holds awhile.

    I still have a plethora of tomatoes, even picked a few to take to a friend. I'm wanting this rain to make them say "wahoo fresh water" and all turn their color for picking, but "slow down nelly" seems to be what their humming though. They are talking rain til Tuesday, maybe they all will notice before they get pulled, seeded and dug under. I think I'll expand next year and double my spot.

    I will get dad to check his figs, boy what I'd do for a couple of those figs, I'm starving typing this and actually need some for their seeds. I am waiting on the new "Bear Creek Seed Catalog" so I can order a few things.

    Ever heard of variegated Cuban Oregano (Plectranthus amboinicus)? I finally found some at Mountain Valley Growers out of Squaw Valley California. It's also called Spanish thyme, and a few other names in other countries. I first used some in South Florida and will be ordering a few plants if anyone is interested they can let me know. It's the best for flavor and the leaves are huge vs those small little leaves on a twig like the common oregano we have around here for a herb.

    -- Posted by chefgrape on Fri, Oct 10, 2014, at 5:18 PM
  • I was under the impression that if we subscribed to the Baker Creek Magazine that we would get the larger catalogue.....Am I mistaken?

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Fri, Oct 10, 2014, at 9:23 PM
  • I think you are right Palindrome but it has been almost a year since I subscribed and I never got any Ginko so I can't be sure

    Those Cuban leaves are bigger. I wonder if variegated and solid have a taste differential?

    Hear another storm coming in. Looks like we missed the rough stuff to the North but rain is coming down. Rainy nights are not bad for sleeping if they can muffle light and drum show.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Fri, Oct 10, 2014, at 10:39 PM
  • One of our dogs HAS to come in. During lightning and thunder. She was a pup on the side of the road during some stormy Spring weather many years ago and she never forgot.

    She's good though. Does not bother the cats, eat their food and holds her per until we let her out. Another pretends she is scared and may be convincing herself it is real but she DOES eat the cat food like a vaccum.

    So far, another nice rain.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Fri, Oct 10, 2014, at 10:50 PM
  • There is no difference in taste of the larger variety because of the variegation, however it is way more distinct in flavor then those smaller varieties and more savory for like a lamb dish or pizza. I used a lot of it in Florida. It is semi fragile trying to grow, the temperatures have to be slightly humid and warm. I know it roots easily from just sticking it in good soil, and everywhere it breaks it springs new growth, I love the stuff.

    That should be right on the catalog, I hope I just get mailed one, but I can always just order on line, surly they have it all there as well.

    Hey Palindrome, did you replant that rosemary...I hope it stays softer, most I've seen gets stiffer, that might have been a super young sprout of a stiff kind of plant if its fast growing. Just curious! One never knows these days...it said it was organic when I bought it, but that was Wal-Mart!

    -- Posted by chefgrape on Sat, Oct 11, 2014, at 11:36 AM
  • Chef,

    Have the Rosemary under the lights...Have not transplanted it just because it is so soft. That means it has not been in the pot very long....Otherwise it would be woody-er.......... I am not good with Rosemary. The temperature and water needs always throw me off. I am used to growing it in California where the needs seem to be much different and I get confused....... When I see that it is responding to the lights and is putting forth growth...I will transplant and keep my fingers crossed.

    I didn't get Ginko either.

    Steve....I have been loving the rain..... Want more ! Lights, camera, action...........

    I mentioned the catalogue because of the prior post mentioning the seed company and the latest ad that has been emailed to me regarding purchase....Got me to thinking that I thought it was included but am not sure.

    -- Posted by Palindrome on Sat, Oct 11, 2014, at 12:35 PM
  • I think it will be mailed to us. I have some old ones when it was on newsprint, so it has come a long way. I too look forward to it.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Sun, Oct 12, 2014, at 10:05 AM
  • It is raining again this morning and while the gardener in me says, let it rain, I am starting to get little anxious about the up coming Web Fair.

    It should clear off and dry up for most of the exhibitors and attendees to be dry, but parking could become a mess.

    This amount of water will not evaporate like it would in the summer and many of the parking spaces are low lying, flat areas that will quickly become mud quagmires with vehicles going in and out.

    If you are going, you might want to make it early Saturday before the traffic mucks it up or later Sunday when it has had one more day to dry out. Wish everyone luck.

    OR, you could go to the Middle Tennessee Plant Swap at Henry Horton on Saturday. The event title doesn't mean you HAVE to have plants to swap, although that will be attendees first priority.

    After they have made their trades, everyone will be happy to share the rest. https://www.facebook.com/events/949031448445644/?ref=6&ref_notif_type=plan_user_...

    Besides, you will make a lot of great acquaintances who love gardening. :-)

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Oct 15, 2014, at 8:06 AM
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