2020 Garden Chronicles #6

I hope you had a wonderful weekend, Readers! I managed a three-day weekend for Fourth of July this year, and while it was not what I anticipated when I first found out I would have three days off, it was definitely good. Last week things became very stressful at work, and being able to be both physically and mentally separated from that environment for a few days was restorative. Many of the reasons for last week’s stress do carry over into this week, but I’m hopeful that everyone involved had a chance to relax this weekend and will come back into the situation with a little more peace and perspective.

To continue the weekend/relaxing trend, here’s a brief update on my little garden!

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Tomato plant July 4 2020My last garden update post was nearly a month ago, and much has changed since then! For one thing, I moved, but my vegetables ended up not able to come with me. There just is no good place for them; my front porch is always in the shade, and the only windows I have face the same direction as the porch, so there no place ever received direct sunlight. Tomatoes and peppers both needย direct sunlight in order to produce well. The strawberry plant might be okay with less sun, but it is in such a small pot that I’m hesitant to put it out. It wouldn’t take more than one major dog-sniff or a soft bump to knock it over and make a big mess. So, for this season, my produce is staying in my parents’ backyard. Thankfully, it’s close enough that I can go over every few days and pick anything that is ready, and they don’t mind. I will have to do a lot of research before next spring to find out what kind of produce I can grow indoors without expensive lights, or in sturdy pots outside without direct sun.

20200630_095927 (1)The picture to the right shows my most recent harvest. The tomatoes started turning just a few days after my last post, in which I mentioned being surprised that they had not turned yet. They taste wonderful. The pepper, too, finally turned a bright orange. I picked it and ate it in an omelette the very next day. It is very sweet, and added a nice difference in texture.

My indoor plants, which did make the move with me, are another story. The echinacea has not adjusted to its new environment at all, and it now dying back very quickly. Unfortunately, I don’t think there is anything I can do at this point. For some reason the air here tends to remain more humid, so it takes a long time for the soil to dry out, and as I mentioned before, there is no direct sunlight. I open my window shades early in the morning so that it can soak up all the sunlight possible, but there just isn’t enough to sustain the plant now that it has become so large. I am hopeful that it will die back mostly but not entirely, and that I might be able to preserve it in a much smaller form.

IMG_20200626_164445_01Cactus is still perking along like normal, leaning towards the sun and surviving everything I throw at it (not literally). I realized recently that this guy is now 5 years old! For a plant in my care, that’s a big deal. I still don’t know what type of cactus it is. I even checked out a book from the library hoping it could help me identify it, but no luck! I’m wondering if it might be some sort of crossbreed or mutation, because it has qualities similar to a few types of cacti, but is not entirely like anything I have read about.

20200703_113025The two “chicks” from my hen & chicks plant have actually perked up up quite a bit in their new window. Previously, I had not seen much growth at all, but in the few weeks since moving there is definitely noticeable growth! Hopefully they continue this way.

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How was your weekend? Are things warming up (or, if you’re on the other side of the world, cooling down) significantly where you are? What does that mean for the plants around you? Aside from my own cultivated plants, it makes me very happy to see the wildflowers blooming on the roadside this time of year!

Until the next chapter,

Jana

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