Friday, July 31, 2009
What's really irritating me today? Forecast teasers on television.
You know what I mean -- the meteorologist does a ten-second spot that says "the weather has been bad/good/whatever recently, but will it be better tomorrow? Stay tuned for my forecast after this show, and I'll tell you."
No. No, no, no.
Coyness does not suit you. Either tell me now, or don't say anything. If I want to know the answer right now, I can just go online and find the answer. If I don't want to know, well, then I've got no incentive to stay tuned, so all you've done is irritate me. I'm cranky enough already.
And don't get me started on the way that some newscasts now offer a mini-forecast during the evening news, which is actually a retrospective: it was sunny/rainy/whatever today. I KNOW that. I want to know whether I need an umbrella tomorrow, or whether I should wear a sweater instead of a tank top. That part of the forecast comes much later in the show, trying to make me stick around for the whole thing. That might have worked before the internet, but now I don't need to stick around and listen to news I don't care about. I just go online.
On the other hand, if the ten-second spot was a useful announcement like, "It's going to be hot/cold/dry/wet/whatever tomorrow. Stay tuned for the details," I might actually stay tuned. And not be so cranky.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
We have bunches of the highly prized baby-sized yellow squashes, but according to my fellow gardener, we're of peasant stock, so we tend to pick them full-sized.
We did pick our first yellow squash yesterday, a larger one that was hiding, just out of range of the camera.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
At least with the rain we've been having, the answer is an emphatic "yes." We've been noticing how they seemed to growing substantially, but didn't have empirical data until today.
The first onion I picked ten days ago was about 3 1/2 ounces, and it was one of the biggest I could find at the time. I picked another one a few minutes ago, and while it was on the large side, it wasn't out of the ordinary. Weight: just under 7 ounces.
That means the fifty pounds of onions I'd previously calculated for our harvest has doubled to closer to one hundred pounds!
Monday, July 20, 2009
It took a while for her to adjust. In the beginning, she desperately wanted to go outside, and I tried putting a harness and leash on her, so I could take her out in the garden with me. She always got too excited, though, and wound herself up in the leash as she rolled in the dirt.
The only "green" she really cared about was grass. Over the years, we reached an agreement: she wouldn't try to follow me outside, and when I came in, I'd bring her a blade or two of grass to eat.
She's going to miss this year's harvest, and I'm going to miss her.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Imagine 200 excited donkeys from the Shrek movies, all shouting, "Pick me! Pick me!" That's what I've been hearing and trying to resist.
I haven't grown onions often enough to know whether they've maxed out already, with the remaining time in the ground only required for curing purposes, or if they'll actually continue to get bigger until the tops fall over.
In any event, I couldn't stand the temptation any longer, and picked a couple. The first one weighed 3.7 ounces, and the second was slightly larger, around 4 ounces. We have something in the vicinity of 150 onions this size, plus another 50 small ones (ranging from an ounce to perhaps 2 1/2 ounces) for a total of at least 50 pounds.
In the grocery store today, red onions are selling for 99 cents a pound, so our crop would cost us $50+ to purchase fully grown, and the seedlings cost us a little under $30. Not a huge return on investment financially, but factoring in the better flavor of these onions, it's a worthwhile crop.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Friday, July 10, 2009
They're garlic plants in love. Holding scapes, instead of hands.
I probably shouldn't anthropomorphize them too much, though, because, even as I'm thinking, "awww, how cute," I'm also looking forward to the day (soon) when I can tear them out of the ground and devour them.
At least we haven't named them.
Sunday, July 5, 2009
The swiss chard is almost as big as our pitiful rhubarb plant.
These plants are the Northern Lights variety, although this picture doesn't do the colors justice.
We also have some basic ruby chard to use as filler as spots open up in the garden, but for the moment, until the onions and garlic are harvested, the garden is stuffed to its limits.
Friday, July 3, 2009
In no particular order, today I found a 2" banana pepper that's already set (while many more pepper plants are flowering, both bananas and Ace); yellow squash on the verge of blooming; and grape tomatoes that have set. The swiss chard is starting to look good too, while the basil is struggling in the cool dampness.
For a while, the onions were threatening to be very large scallions. It's more than time for them to have started bulbing, and as of a few days ago, they looked like leeks (except they were red). We'd have found a use for them anyway, but I was pleased to notice a definite trend toward globe-shaped root tops. I still think they're going to be late, but they could turn out hugely magnificent with all this rain.
We've harvested about a quart of sugarsnap peas so far, most of them eaten before they leave the garden. Many of the pods are extra-long and empty of peas, though, more like snow pea pods. I'm attributing it to the rain, which may be causing the pods to grow too quickly, sort of the same way sudden, excessive rain leads to cracking tomatoes.