Monday, June 27, 2011

Bugs bugs bugs. And disease.

Well, summer is off to a swimming start. The blackberries are delicious. The tomatoes are coming in (!) and I saw a bee pollinating no fewer than 5 cucumber flowers. Gold star to that bee!!!! On the negative side, one of my squash plants was infested with squash bugs. I grabbed them all with my fingers and put them in a pail of soapy water. Yum. I went back the next day to get the remaining ones and just squished them with my fingers. Double yum. Some of the tomatoes have some kind of wilt. I'm being a bad gardner because I haven been able to bring myself to uproot them. So I will probably lose the entire harvest. So far, I do not have any vine borers. Everyone else I know who gardens downtown has them, so I think it's only a matter of time. I check every day, so hopefully I will catch them before my plants die. One of my poor pawpaw trees appears to have been scalded by the sun. I built it a shelter using my floating row cover, so hopefully it will not die.

In other news, the city is almost certainly going to sell us the triangle behind the house! Darko Urban Farm will be expanding!!!!!! I think we have large scale compost and lots of fruit trees and bushes back there. I don't think we are going to fence it in. If it all goes well, there will be a beautiful, available food forest back there in five years or so!

On the sad side, it is not raining almost at all. It's getting really bad. Apparently the corn crop out east has already been declared a lost cause. With our catchement system, we've managed without using much water from the city at all, but I'm not sure how much longer we can avoid watering.

All in all, things are good so far. I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. And freaking out that other people have squash out the ying yang while mine just flowered for the first time this morning. But it's all good.

And sometime soon, a little house that matches the people house will have feathered, egg laying residents... The house is cute cute cute! Yellow with white trim just like my house and with a blue front door just like my house! And I think we are going to stencil "Darko Urban Farm" on one side, not like my house, but awesome.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Well, mark me down as a true believer. Meaning, I guess, that I no longer just think permaculture sounds good on paper. It IS good in the garden. I was visiting the garden briefly a couple of days ago after work. It looks jungle-y in a way that makes me forget how tidy and kind of barren it looked a few months ago. Now it is a mess of food and flowers and bugs. And I love it!!! I was taking a peek at the snap peas, which are kind of on their last legs; it is too hot for them and it is time for them to move over and make way for the beginnings of green bean season. All of the sudden, a VERY scary-looking bug was among the snap peas. It was beautiful, and it looked like the kind of bug that wouldn't think twice before taking you out. It was so clearly a death machine that I was afraid of, even though it was relatively small. I have never, ever EVER seen this type of bug before. It looked exotic. It looked like it would eat lots of pests!!! It looked like I had made this amazing, pest eating bug a home in my veggie /flower jungle!!!! I will take a look in my bug ID book, and if I identify this bug, I will share it here.

Now, if only it would rain. I've somehow managed to already run a 1700 gallon cistern dry....