This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he always thought the garden was his. Even though I do all the work, he always stood by me. I'm located near Boston (in USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot and a backyard vegetable garden. I use sustainable organic methods and try to grow all of my family's vegetables.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

soggy garden

today's rainfall
tomatoes seedlings

All right, already with the rain! My garden has had plenty of water. Turn off the faucet.

My rain gauge says I got 2.5 inches of water in the past 2 days. This has been going on for at least a week now. We get these incredible thunderstorms about 3 or 4 times a days. Today I was lucky to squeeze in a dry 1.5 hour visit to the plot to work. I ran into the house as the next downpour started. (Fortunately, I checked interactive radar weather site before I went out!)

It is unusual summer weather for this area. How can one plan for this? I am glad I have a wide variety of vegetable crops in my garden. Some are doing well, some are not... The tomatoes and cukes are not appreciating the constant moisture. Sad because tomatoes are mine (and everyone's) favorite crop. The lower leaves just are so soggy, they turn yellow and then brown ...

However many vegetables are doing great. My beets are great - Chiogga and Lutz. Yummy. Also squash is doing too good (I give bags of it to anyone who visits me - lookout). Carrots, beans, radish are good. Broccoli is great too. And fava beans. I have a super potato crop starting now it seems - though its still underground.

My flat of fall seedlings are outside on my stone pathway, "getting some sun". Not. But they're out there just in case the sun comes out.

For sure, a dry clear blue day would be appreciated.....


Anonymous Ted said...

What is your approach for pruning tomato plants. I have read about pinching off suckers and pruning the branches below the first cluster of tomatoes. Doesnt that affect the sweetness of the tomato or does it allow the plant to concentrate on the fruit more instead of branches?

July 25, 2008 8:06 AM

Blogger amw40 said...

This rain has been driving me crazy, too. FINALLY this morning some sunshine! Loving your garden over here in Cambridge, MA.

July 25, 2008 8:42 AM

Anonymous Marie said...

omg, the rain !!!!

I just cannot believe how wet it has been this week. I was out this morning giving first aid to two tomato plants that had literally been pulled over, as their stakes had no more traction in the mud. One had the rootball exposed and I had to bury it again. Cross fingers. There is a lot of plum tomato fruit on that plant, and I would be upset to see it start to fail now.

My squash patch was pummeled. A lot of the vines are broken and snapped beyond saving. :(

Good for you on your potatoes, Kathy. Your recipes always sound so yummy.

July 25, 2008 8:55 AM

Blogger kathy said...

I usually pinch off the suckers of my tomato plants. I only do this because I prefer the plants grow tall rather than bushy so I can fit more plants in a small space.

I only remove the lower branches if the leaves turn yellow. (Until very recently I had not heard of doing this proactively to increase airflow under the plants.)

I have not heard anything about either of these affecting tomato flavor.

I am going to change some of my practices for the tomatoes in my community plot. With more sun, the plants get very full with dense broad leaves - even though I pinch the suckers. These very full plants need more airflow. I think next year I will plant fewer plants and give them more space. I should plant low crops next to the tomato bed. And I think its probably a good idea the trim off the lower leaves once the plants set fruit. I don't think this will have any direct affect on flavor - but would improve airflow to reduce fungal diseases and increase plant health (which would probably be good for flavor and yield in the long run...)

July 25, 2008 4:29 PM

Anonymous Mary S., Toronto said...

I love your site, but would like to read your older posts. How can I do that? I posted a note on your post with the picture of your dog sitting, but haven't heard back from you.

August 08, 2008 12:02 PM


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