Dignitatem Societatis

The Garden Chronicles - Week 6

  
By:  Dignitatem Societatis  •  Gardening  •  3 months ago  •  43 comments

The Garden Chronicles - Week 6
Rain, rain, go away...

It's been cloudy and rainy for the better part of the past 2 weeks. Today it stopped around noon, gave me a few hours for picture taking, and then started back up again (with a little thunder and lightening) while I was inside sorting the images for this post. Temps are pretty much back to normal, though, so at least there's that.

Thursday was cloudy, but mostly rain free, and that evening I was able to get the tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants in the ground. I still haven't been able to clear out all the rocks that I raked up last Sunday, but the weather is supposed to be nice and rain-free this coming week, so I should be able to get it done soon. The corn will go in this coming week as well. Normally, I would have planted it yesterday (the 15th), but the weather obviously had different plans for me this year.

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It's a swamp at the moment.

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Standing water everywhere.

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Flooded asparagus.

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Tomatoes.

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Big enough to start flowering.

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2 eggplants (top), and 8 peppers.

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Peas. Looks like I have a straggler, probably beat down by the rain.

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Cucumber. No growth to speak of. It's almost time to plant the second one, and this one is still going nowhere.

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The cantaloupe transplants went in on Monday evening, during a lull in the rain.

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So did a rosemary plant, next to the blackberries.

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Onions and potatoes.

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Turnips and beets.

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Kohlrabi.

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An earthworm near some carrot sprouts, trying not to drown.

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The lettuces. There should be 6 more in the ground with them by now, but they're still in the planter because of the rain.

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Blackberry blossoms galore.

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That's an out-of-focus honeybee on a blackberry blossom. Sorry about the poor quality.

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Yup, the pitiful-looking zucchini is trying to flower, even though it's so small. I think the cool, wet weather has stressed it out and made it think it needs to hurry up and reproduce.

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Basil in a flower bed.

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Mint in a flower bed, next to the back deck.

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Lettuce seedlings.

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Lettuce and other stuff in the planter. Some of this really needs to go in the ground soon.

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The snowballs are done already. I think the late frost last week did them in.

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This little guy is trying to be a pink lilac bush.

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His bigger brother has barely started blooming.

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That's supposed to be a lawn, not a rice paddy.

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I was trying to get a shot of this big water turtle that was swimming around in the pond, but he was camera shy, so I settled for a reflection of the tree instead.

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The woods after the rain. Spring green.

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Wild blackberries blooming in the woods.

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Wild daisies (I think).

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Here's what passes for a flood and a waterfall when you live right at the top of the watershed.

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The new hanging wren house.

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An unintentional hanging wren house. Found this nest in a hanging flower pot on the front porch. I think they're wren eggs, at least. Haven't been able to catch a glimpse of the mama bird checking in on them yet.

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The glorious old oak on the way to the garden. I love this tree.

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See you next week.

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Dignitatem Societatis
1  author  Dignitatem Societatis    3 months ago

Can anyone tell if those really are wren eggs? It's not my forte.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
2  sandy-2021492    3 months ago

A pink lilac?  That's a variety you don't see every day.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @2    3 months ago

I don't know what's wrong with that little one. It's a few years old, but still looks stunted and asymmetrical.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
2.1.1  sandy-2021492  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @2.1    3 months ago

It looks healthy other than its size, though, doesn't it?

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1.2  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @2.1.1    3 months ago

I suppose so. But I always thought lilacs were supposed to be bushier, and they're supposed to flower all around, not just in a few spots.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
2.1.3  sandy-2021492  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @2.1.2    3 months ago

Is it planted near the more robust one?  Same soil, sunlight, etc?

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1.4  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @2.1.3    3 months ago

No, the little one's in the front, and the bigger one's in the back. The sun and soil situations are about the same, though. The front one might actually get a little more sun in the mornings. They both have evening shade. 

I think it's just defective. Poor little thing.

 
 
 
bccrane
2.1.5  bccrane  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @2.1.4    3 months ago

In the last picture is the small lilac in the center of the picture?  If so, then the problem could be it is too close to the oak tree.  The oak could be draining the soil of water and nutrients.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1.6  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  bccrane @2.1.5    3 months ago
The oak could be draining the soil of water and nutrients.

The lilac gets a couple of fertilizer spikes around it every year, and it also gets watered in the summer. I guess the big oak could still be interfering, but other things grow well near trees in the yard, so who knows?

 
 
 
bccrane
2.1.7  bccrane  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @2.1.6    3 months ago
The lilac gets a couple of fertilizer spikes around it every year, and it also gets watered in the summer.

Yes and the oak knows this.  We have a tile that drains behind one of our buildings and my brother's house.  His basement was flooding, but very little water was coming out the tile and we couldn't get a snake up the tile, so dug up the end of the tile that was 6' deep.  To our surprise the end was plugged for 10' with a solid mass of roots, in which a cottonwood tree found a gap and capitalized the unlimited source of water.  The tree wasn't even that close, but found it anyways.

Is your topsoil natural or was it hauled in?  The composition looks like a sandy loam, but there is quite a bit of sharp gravel mixed in. 

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1.8  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  bccrane @2.1.7    3 months ago
Is your topsoil natural or was it hauled in?  The composition looks like a sandy loam, but there is quite a bit of sharp gravel mixed in.

The yard is natural, but holes were dug everywhere a shrub or a tree has gone in, and the soil was mixed with potting soil and gypsum and then back-filled into the hole.

The garden soil is far from natural. It's had all kinds of amendments over the years. It's natural state was a thin layer of topsoil over a mix of heavy red clay, lighter gray clay, carbonate sedimentary rocks, and that sharp cherty gravel. The chert is unavoidable. It's everywhere, and tilling simply mixes it throughout the garden, amendments included. According to the geological survey, millions of years of uplift around here has weathered away younger deposits of things like Mississippian and Pennsylvanian limestone, all the way down to a bedrock of Ordovician dolomite, leaving heavier stuff like clay deposits and the hard chert that formed in the younger limestone behind. So that's what I have to deal with.

 
 
 
shona1
2.1.9  shona1  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @2.1.8    3 months ago

A/noon Dignitatem..Tad soggy over there at the moment by the looks..You are so lucky to be able to grow Blackberries..here if you grow the bushes you can be fined and the bushes are sprayed. Blackberries are regarded as a noxious weed here and they are constantly spraying them. Can't beat home made Blackberry Jam...sigh..So if we find a patch of Blackberries the location is kept secret and picking begins as soon as possible...Just have a watch out for snakes they are all deadly here. They love the fruit and often curl up under the bushes...Tread on one and you will be cactus in no time....

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
2.1.10  sandy-2021492  replied to  shona1 @2.1.9    3 months ago

I guess blackberries are pretty aggressive, aren't they?  They're also pretty tasty, but I don't know if they're tasty enough to risk a venomous bite.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1.11  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  shona1 @2.1.9    3 months ago
Can't beat home made Blackberry Jam

Jam is good, but I think I prefer jelly (the seeds get strained out). 

Cobbler is pretty good, too, with a little ice cream on the side.

It's a shame blackberries are such a problem there. Another reason for someone to develop a seedless variety. You could grow those if they existed. Even if birds or other critters stole some berries off the bushes they wouldn't be able to spread the seeds far and wide.

 
 
 
Ender
2.1.12  Ender  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @2.1.11    3 months ago

Hey, do you know anything about planting trees? Or have you before?

I finally got mine and it is really wilted. Got it planted this afternoon. It looked like they cut the roots. I just hope it lives.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1.13  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  Ender @2.1.12    3 months ago

Not an expert, but I've planted trees.

If it's already in the ground, then just keep it watered. It won't have many roots for a while, so don't let the soil right around it dry out.

The wilting is probably from the shock of being shipped and handled. It should perk up before long.

 
 
 
Ender
2.1.14  Ender  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @2.1.13    3 months ago

Thanks, I hope so.

It just looked pitiful so I planted it right away. I am sure being boxed up and in transit wasn't easy.

It came in a burlap sack and their instructions said to plant it with the sack. Said they grow them in a sack and the roots may grow into it or something.

When I was going to plant it, it was all loose in the sack and the soil around it was dry. So I just planted it without the sack.

I did throw some manure soil in the hole and tried to keep the dirt around the roots that came with it. 

From what I gather since I didn't plant it to their instructions I would be out of any refund.

It is supposed to be hardy so fingers crossed.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
2.1.15  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  Ender @2.1.14    3 months ago

It's not great that the rootball arrived dry and loose, but it'll probably be ok.

 
 
 
pat wilson
3  pat wilson    3 months ago

Such beautiful photos ! 

The garden looks a little soupy but the plants look healthy.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
3.1  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  pat wilson @3    3 months ago

I'm hoping for some good growth this week, now that it's warmer and the rain will have stopped. I don't have much faith in that cucumber, though. Luckily, I have a couple more coming up behind it.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
4  Buzz of the Orient    3 months ago

Well, maybe the garden isn't doing so well yet, but everything else is pretty good. Can't have EVERYTHING.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
4.1  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4    3 months ago

jrSmiley_100_smiley_image.jpg

 
 
 
charger 383
5  charger 383    3 months ago

That is a very pretty place

I am very far behind on my garden, but all the plants that were in the windows are now outside waiting to be planted 

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
5.1  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  charger 383 @5    3 months ago

Thanks.

I'm behind, too. The corn should be in, and my root crop rows should be fully planted by now. Looks like I'm going to miss out on the first batch of cukes this year as well. I hate when that happens.

 
 
 
Ender
6  Ender    3 months ago

Whatever happens the peas seem really happy.

Now watch, after all this rain you will go through a dry spell.   Haha

Come on, fess up. There is a MJ crop around there somewhere. jrSmiley_100_smiley_image.jpg

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
6.1  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  Ender @6    3 months ago
Now watch, after all this rain you will go through a dry spell.

Lol. I wouldn't be surprised. One extreme to another is how it goes sometimes. I hope not, though. 

Come on, fess up. There is a MJ crop around there somewhere.

Nah. Not really my thing. That reminds me of the time I had police flying circles over the garden in a light plane. I guess they were looking for people growing pot plants out in the country. I had okra that year and it can look a lot like pot from a distance. They eventually figured it out and flew away, though.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
6.1.1  sandy-2021492  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @6.1    3 months ago

When I was in high school, the police showed up at our house while we were on vacation.  Apparently, a neighbor had been growing weed in a corner of our land that bordered theirs.  It was tucked back in the woods up a steep hill, so we seldom went there.  The police figured it out before we got home, but it made for some awkward questions for a while.

 
 
 
Ender
6.1.2  Ender  replied to  sandy-2021492 @6.1.1    3 months ago

Ha.  In high school I was growing some plants myself. One was doing extremely well and looked great. Being an idiot I decided one day to put it on the back porch for a day of sun. I don't remember what I did or if I went somewhere but I went to get it and someone stole it.

Come to find out it was my next door neighbor. He stole it because he didn't want attention drawn to our houses as he had a growing farm in his basement.

After we knew someone had tried to break into his house. I don't know who it was but he had thought it was me and my friends. Would sit on his front steps pretending to clean a gun and stare at us with an evil glare.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
6.1.3  sandy-2021492  replied to  Ender @6.1.2    3 months ago

Apparently, my current neighbor had some growing inside before I moved here, and was caught with it.  According to another neighbor, he wasn't selling and only grew it for personal use, but marijuana hadn't been decriminalized here for even medical use at the time, so there were criminal charges.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
7  author  Dignitatem Societatis    3 months ago

Look what I just saw crawling across the back yard, heading down to the creek...

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sandy-2021492
7.1  sandy-2021492  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @7    3 months ago

I've seen 3 garter snakes now while walking the dog.  It seems the reptiles don't think this spring has been as chilly as the humans have found it to be.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
7.1.1  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1    3 months ago

I don't think I'd noticed any reptiles until I saw the water turtles yesterday. I've seen amphibians, though. The tree frogs started peeping on warmer nights in February this year (which was way early for them, btw), and in March I saw one of those awesome spotted salamanders when I was hauling off leaves that came out of a flower bed.

I haven't seen any snakes, yet.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.2  sandy-2021492  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @7.1.1    3 months ago

February is pretty early for spring peepers.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
7.1.3  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.2    3 months ago

Warm winter, cool spring this year.

 
 
 
bccrane
8  bccrane    3 months ago

Wow, in the last 24 hours we had 5 inches of rain and it is still coming down.  There are roads under water all around us, farm fields are lakes, its a mess.  

 
 
 
bccrane
8.1  bccrane  replied to  bccrane @8    3 months ago

My wife works out of a city 20 miles away and the state police just notified us that the only way to get there from here is to take a route which is 60 miles one way. Every road over this river is either under water or the bridges are comprised.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
8.2  sandy-2021492  replied to  bccrane @8    3 months ago

Stay safe.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
8.3  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  bccrane @8    3 months ago

Indeed, stay safe.

Has the rain stopped? Sounds like the last thing you need at the moment is even a drop more.

 
 
 
bccrane
8.3.1  bccrane  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @8.3    3 months ago

Still raining, but not as hard, it is supposed to continue until morning.

At the moment it looks to be the crops are a loss.  I am glad I didn't plant my garden last weekend, my garden area is under water.

I'm going to go check on my father, he lives near a river and it is over the banks and still rising.

 
 
 
bccrane
8.3.2  bccrane  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @8.3    3 months ago

Raining heavily again.

Made it to my dad's house, the saying "turn around, don't drown" they do mean that, I had to go through a foot or more for about 1/8 of a mile, it was hair raising, the river was up in his yard, but at this point the river has a lot of land to fill up to get much higher, so he should be ok.  I had to cut through our property along high ground to get out of there, good thing for 4wd.

 
 
 
Dignitatem Societatis
8.3.3  author  Dignitatem Societatis  replied to  bccrane @8.3.2    3 months ago
he should be ok

Glad to hear it. Best of luck with the flooding. I hope there won't be too much damage for you.

 
 
 
bccrane
8.3.4  bccrane  replied to  Dignitatem Societatis @8.3.3    3 months ago

Total ended up being 6 inches, roads washed out, bridges compromised, railroad also washed out, and the water is still too high and now can't get in to check on dad, the river is now flowing across country, he is fine though and keeping in contact via phone.  

The rain quit sometime around 3 in the morning.

 
 
 
bccrane
8.4  bccrane  replied to  bccrane @8    3 months ago

The water has dropped significantly here, but not so much down river yet because the water has to push it's way into lake Huron.

A funny thing happened though just two days before all of this, there are two farms near us that leased for a solar farm and there were two men riding around with GPS and tagging different locations for elevation.  I stopped and talked to one of them and he said they were creating a topographical map of the farms and they were tagging points of know elevation for the aerial photos to be taken next week, I asked why they would need that, he said so they would know what areas would be flooded should the 500 year flood occur.  LOL, all they had to do was wait a couple days and take the aerial photos of the 500 year flood.