Thursday, June 23, 2011

Melon garden!

Here are some photographs of the new melon garden, taken on my iPhone (sorry). Apologies in advance for the image quality.

On the left are the italian zucchinis I've linked in earlier posts. I have nothing but great things to say about this variety. At first I thought the leaves had some type of powdery mildew but that is not the case.... they are just wacky heirlooms that have a very striking pattern. Even better is that they started flowering and bore fruit when they were only half this size. The kids love the large flowers and keep asking to pick up the ones that have fallen off... unfortunately that means walking on the bed itself which I really discourage. I think they understand.

Here on the right are my charentais musk melons which are doing much better than I dared hope with the cold spring we experienced. I think a lot of the credit goes to the cold frame keeping them warm when the nights in May were dropping to 40 degrees. I estimate it added 10-20 degrees during the day depending on how open I left it, and about 5-10 at night by trapping the air against the ground. These melons have tendrils that will wrap and climb around the chervena chushka peppers. If the peppers grow high enough it should not matter but at the rate the melons are expanding they better hurry. This is my second year growing these and I am really looking forward to harvesting them in mid-August if all goes well.

The watermelons have started to flower (1 or 2) but that is about all I can report. I have never grown them before so I am being cautiously optimistic. The seeds themselves took a month to germinate and I almost through them out several times before they did. If patience is the secret to gardening... I am doomed.

Ironically, the cucumbers are behind all of the warm weather plants. I have no good explanation for this but the plants appear to be doing well. It may be that they set fruit early and it has slowed their development. It is a russian variety (Bushy) so it is hard for me to believe it is weather related. A dahlia I thought had died came up on the left.... and on the right.

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