Sunday, December 28, 2008

Summer - Warming up... ...

The pot of lavender bee pretty seems to have grown but are attacked by whiteflies. I used the yellow sticky trap which was quite good but no good with controlling them. So I did a pyrethrum spray and the flies were gone. The new flower buds have grown.
Mint given by a friend standing in jar of water (Christmas Day) waiting to root. Roots appeared 5 Jan 09)
I have harvested lots of plums. They turn from green to yellow to deep red. Taste sweet in terms of pulp but have sourish bitter skin.
The sunflowers are 0.5m tall for the tallest! Growing fantastically. Waiting for giant sunflowers!
An orange has germinated. However, I cannot remember which type it is. :(
I accidentally pulled out this plant but the smell seems so oregano. I replanted it and it is growing fine again. I hope it turns out to be some yummy wild oregano.
A friend has just given me two twigs of vietnamese/hot mint and I have re-planted them (26 Dec 08) in this pot with a thai basil which rooted while kept in a glass jar of water. The former needs lots of water. This time, I made sure I gave them Seasol to help with any shock. I kept the pot indoors and gave it lots water. So far so good.
I bought these two cheap pots of flowers ($2 each) to attract bees to come and pollinate my melons.
The Mighty Red tomato plant is doing well and have produced more than 10 fruits so far. These are the largest so far.
Clump of melons before thinning out.
Melon yellowing after thinning out.
Surviving melon plant with flowers. Seasol came a bit late on 22 Dec 08 but at least rescued most of them.
In my last blog, I mentioned that my peppers died of shock during re-potting. So, I have since sown some on 14 December after cooking some yellow and red ones. I also thinned out the clump of melons but they too went into shock despite my very careful job. Their leaves were turning yellow and thankfully I got some advice from a fellow blogger to add some fertiliser. So I did, with Seasol and they have survived. Some died but a good number survived. A few of them have flowered and I am so pleased to see bees coming to them one early morning on 27 Dec 08. That means pollination! I wonder if the two little cheap pots of marigolds are doing their job attracting bees on the vege patch. I hope to see melon fruits soon, either rockmelon or honeydew. I am not exactly a fan of them but it is fun just to see them grow.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Photo Update of Garden Babies

Pear sprinkled with cornflour which did not help with curbing pear slugs - experiment failed. Manual squashing with a disposable glove works best. Pyrethrum spray works but not so on windy days. Thyme growing taller - hoping to harvest some soon. Peach tree doing pesky aphids due to good work of ladybugs. Green plum turning yellow and then will go red.
Plums on the tree.
My orange seeds have germinated after a long while (Sept to Dec). :)
Rosemary growing taller.
My friend has confirmed these are either chilli or bell peppers. However they soon died after thinning out and repotting. Should have added Seasol fertiliser during that.
Chilli plants are growing at a slow pace since sowing on 4 Nov 08.
Friend has confirmed these are melons (rockmelon or honeydew). Probably have to space them out when the rain goes and soil is soft.
Sunflowers are doing fantastic since sowing 1st & 3rd Nov 08.
Two types of plums harvested - maroon and yellowish-red.

Summer - Beautiful morning!

A day late for this. Yesterday had a beautiful morning! Sun's not exactly out. Not gloomy. Not sunny. Not exactly breezy. Just very beautiful to be out in the yard doing gardening. Checked my herbs - thyme, rosemary, mint, thai basil - checked my tomato plant, sunflower plants, melon, chilli and lavender for signs of pests. Could see the regular white flies. Found a really large ladybug on a blade of grass while feeding my dog in the yard. Brought it to my tomato plant which has grown really well from a small plant. Found a ladybug larva on the peach tree and brought it to my tomato plant too. I have got yellow sticky trap over the tomato plant but the plant has grown so much the trap would probably be a bit out of sight for the existing white flies who love hiding among the leaves below. I am taking all measures to prevent my wonderful tomato plant from being overtaken by pests, excluding pesticides for the time being. The pear and plum trees are not doing exactly very well as their leaves are being fed on my Saw fly larvae - slug-like creatures. I tried to manually squash them to death but they are a lot. I guess I could not do very much especially higher up the trees. Wondering if I would get any pears eventually at the rate they are feeding! They are really pests! Yet to try out the pyrethrum that I have bought. Did some fruit-wrapping work - using plastic bags and stapling them to individual peaches and pears. Hoping that this would help prevent birds from feeding on the ripening fruits. Harvested some plums - sweet and sour at the same time. Since that wonderful morning, it has been raining cats and dogs till now.
Pear slug (Sawfly larvae) on a plum leaf.
A gigantic ladybug on the tomato leaf.
Yellow sticky trap traps a lot of flying insects - unfortunately good & bad - indiscriminate Tomato flowers - flowering in a few areas on the plant
Flourishing tomato plant
The same plant a month!
"All that mankind needs for good health and healing is provided by God in nature...the challenge of Science is to find it." - Paracelcus, the father of Pharmcology, 1493 - 1541