Today In Central Texas

I am excited about the spring planting and how it’s going so far. The carrots are up, as are the cabbages and iceberg lettuce.  The radishes will be ready to consume in a couple more days. The celery did not come up at all, nor did the leaf lettuce. The leaf lettuce seeds were a couple of years old.

The Spanish onions are doing well. I am still waiting for my 1015 sets to come in. I fear I have been ripped of as these people do no longer answer email or telephone. Ever hear of Rich Farm gardens? Somewhere in Indiana.

The  tomatoes I started under the dome, are doing well; those that came up anyway. Funny, the ones that are doing best are the VR Moscow variety, which I grew a couple years ago; you remember the ones that grew to the size of Sequoia trees, but the blooms did not stick. I heard of a remedy for this…are you ready? Take your hoe, and just beat the shit out of the t’mater plants. I mean branch bustin’ like you’d go about whippin’ up on Ashley Judd. Something about stressing out the plant so it “gets with the program”. Will  try it if necessary.

I now have four blueberry bushes in separate pots, due to the soil alkalinity. The oldest two don’t look that good, the newer ones still look OK. Persnickety things.

I planted a grapevine as well. I hope it puts out well as much as it costs. Supposedly, it will produce continually until first frost…heh heh. We’ll see about that.  Don’t expect a frost here until next year…

I planted twenty strawberry plants last Friday. They are doing very well, and fully expect to have a crop this summer.

How to keep birds off your precious fruits? Hang CDs in and around them. The shiny surfaces keep pesky birds away. My sister in law hung them in her peach tree last year, and for the first time, she actually got to eat some. She was very proud and raved about their flavor.

Now the corn field. I dragged out the PVC irrigation lines to prepare the drip lines for planting.

My cousin, a life long farmer suggested putting the corn rows closer together; 24 inches, and planting corn seeds 6-8 inches apart instead of 18 inches (the distance between the holes in the drip line). He said the corn roots will seek out the water and doesn’t have to be directly watered after it germinates. He also suggested to alternate the varieties of corn within the rows. All sweet corn “you never know” he said “you could end up with a  new variety”.

After I tilled last time, the Johnson grass has made a comeback in the cornfield. I asked him as well how to tell the difference  between Johnson grass, and a corn sprout?

He did not know.

The corn field is the next project. I figured if I got it all planted by the end of the month, I could be done harvesting corn by the first of August.

The Black Diamond watermelons will need to endure the August heat. The heat is what makes them so sweet and juicy.

Several rows of okra will be in order as well. Okra likes the hot weather too.

I am having an entire section of the corn field this year for pepper plants.

Delicata squash is something else I am looking forward to.

My 55 plug seedling starter did not work as I had hoped. Only a handful of seeds started as mentioned above.

I am off to town to procure some drip irrigation paraphernalia.

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