In the Garden – Week 5

This has been another week of fantastic growth in the garden.  I’ve been picking handfuls of Nasturtium blooms almost daily and the Basil has gotten so big that I will probably have to cage it soon.  The one surviving sunflower has made it to about 3 ft. tall and is showing no signs of slowing down.  The Purple Coneflower has shot up and has formed heads that are nearly ready to burst.  We’ve also gotten some blueberries this year, however, it seems there should be many more based on the number of green berries we had a few weeks ago.  Call the police!  I’m thinking the birds may be stealing from me.  🙂  In hindsight, maybe I shouldn’t have planted the blueberry bushes so close to the pollinator garden.  Perhaps it is giving them the wrong impression.

I have been very pleased that we haven’t needed the soaker hoses once this week.  We’ve gotten plenty of rain and my barrels actually had to be temporarily disconnected because they were overflowing too close to the foundation of the house.

We’ve had to put out some beetle bait this week as the little buggers seem to have found a tasty meal in my newly planted Cherry tree.  They couldn’t care less about the Figs or anything else in the yard, just the Cherry.  I finally made my way to Hell-Mart for some new pots for the Lemon and Banana trees.  Unfortunately, my brain seemed to have forgotten that I will also need more potting soil so they have yet to be replanted.

In observing the Lima beans I’m afraid we may be in for a rather dismal season.  Of the beans that were planted maybe 25% or less have sprouted and, as yet are still only about 6 in. high.  Typically, this far into the season the green beans are already well trailed up the arbor.  Maybe Limas are just slower growers.  I really have no experience with them so we’ll just watch and wait.  The Shallots that were bought on a whim and plopped in the ground with zero expectations are looking fabulous.  I’m pretty sure every single one has sprouted.  I can’t say the same for the Purple onions, however, I’m wondering if the husband may have accidentally plucked up some of the onion tops while weeding over the weekend.

Of course, as it now turns out we are probably going to be abandoning the bed that was slated for lettuces and onions anyway in favor of  a turtle pen.  A WHAT?????  Yep!  A turtle pen.  My husband came home with an Eastern Box Turtle last week.  He has been dying for a turtle for awhile now and this one just happened to “follow” him home.  I am the original inventor of “it followed me home, I swear” so I’m pretty sure he’s full of it.  🙂  Sully, as he (yes, I’ve checked under his hood and he is indeed male) has been named, is currently living on our screened-in back porch and gets daily free-roaming time in the yard.  I am amazed at just how fast a turtle can actually move.  Once the lumber and fencing has been purchased the lettuce/onion bed will be built up to about 18″ – 24″ and then a lockable critter-proof lid will be hinged to the top.  His new digs will be 3.5′ X 24′.  Please don’t call PETA, that is in FEET, not inches.  A hide box will be constructed for one end and a shaded soaking pool on the other.  During heavy rains he will come back onto the safety of the screened porch and in the winter he will come inside to a heated turtle bin with a smaller soaking tub, a MegaRay UVB bulb and plenty free-roam time if he doesn’t hibernate.  When I started plotting his new digs the husband looked at me and said, “I thought we could just stick him in a big aquarium.”  After 15 yrs. does he still not know me?  I do not do things the easy way when it comes to the critters in my charge.  Instead, I try to go above and beyond what is simply adequate to pamper them.

This Week’s Harvest

*All from one afternoon.  Much more basil and nasturtium could have been picked but we couldn’t eat it all at once so it stayed on the vine.  Mango the bearded dragon and Sully the turtle are eating LOTS of it these days.  I’m expecting a revolt any day now.

Not pictured: blueberries


2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Sandy said,

    Good call on the turtle. He would wither and die in an terrarium. They need to be able to burrow and bask.

    • 2

      contessa20 said,

      Yep! I am OBSESSIVE about researching whatever animals we have. Because Dale had wanted one for so long I had actually researched long before he brought home Sully but I still spent several hours re-reading stuff on Friday to make sure I did everything right.

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