July 22nd, 2010

Test Garden Update: Debbie Leung, Olympia, WA

DebbieLeungIt finally got hot in this corner of our country, up into the 90s. We’ll probably continue in the 70’s/80’s for a bit. The lettuces have been great. I sowed ‘Sweetie Baby Romaine’ indoors in early March and the ones I haven’t harvested yet are still holding their own. Two additional plantings are growing nicely.

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‘Sea of Red’ leaf lettuce was planted with the ‘Sweetie Baby Romaine’ in early spring and is beautiful—very red where the sun penetrates, but green inside the head. It’s starting to bolt now. That’s the two of them in the photo at left. ‘Midnight Ruffles’ was sown in early May and June to test its purported bitterfree-ness in heat. It isn’t big enough yet to sample, but is quite beautiful.

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I must have gotten the zucchinis mixed up, but good thing! I thought the ‘Cavilli’ zuke died and I had no more seeds to replant. I sowed more ‘Midnight Lightning’ so I’d have plenty of zukes to harvest LOL. But the early zuke plant that survived got big quickly and started producing really early, like by a couple weeks even in this year’s cool early summer (due to it being parthenocarpic?), and was a creamy light green color. Must be ‘Cavilli’! Tastes good, too, nice and creamy.

I think I’ve discovered the secret to gardening side-by-side with wild bunnies. For years, I’d brag that they weren’t a nuisance for me—until now. Why were my test bean leaves chewed to nubbins, and the test marigold leaves, also the zinnias, spinach, chard, and some of the lettuces? I found a few slugs, but not many and none where some of the damage was. Then it dawned on me: bunnies! I’d been negligent on keeping the grasses mowed, some getting really tall and thick, providing good bunny hiding places. No one has been spending hours every day in the garden and my dog has aged to the point of no longer being a threat. The secret? Eliminate hiding places and putter in the garden a lot!

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Comments

    I read that if you cut up a black garden hose into foot length pieces and scatter them around, rabbits think they are snakes and will stay away.

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