I’ve made a million mistakes in the garden this year. For example, I thought our sweet corn got destroyed by Japanese Beetles (and in talking to other farms, their corn was destroyed by Japanese Beetles unless they sprayed and sprayed and sprayed with insecticide), but what we discovered the other day when Wally picked an ear of sweet corn that was still on a stalk was that it cross-pollinated with the dent corn which was being grown, down wind, several rows away. I had no idea that corn could pollinate that easily, but in thinking about it … duh … The ear that Wally pulled had some beautiful blue kernels in it. The Japanese Beetles did do damage, but they did not destroy the crop like I thought they did. The corn did not pollinate completely, which should not have affected its taste. It was the cross pollination with the dent corn that affected its taste.
Lesson learned … We’ve got a beautiful stand of Bloody Butcher corn just beginning to get silks and as best as I can tell, the Japanese Beetles are done for the season.
I put the flats of cool weather crops that I started on Monday in our monster cart (large wagon) and have it parked under a pine tree where Wally and I water them twice a day. I’m excited to see how they germinate. I plan to get more started this weekend.
For the past few days, I’ve had in the back of my mind to go out and spray the beans and field peas with a mixture of Pyrethrin, dish soap and Spinosad but haven’t got around to it. I read this article today and it makes me think maybe it would be better to try to make conditions better for the plants and less hospitable for the bugs. That spraying for bugs, even though I am using chemicals approved for organic gardening, is nothing more than a bandaid approach. I gave up on spraying the pumpkins and it has now become survival of the fittest. I am scared to go out and inspect closer for fear of what I will find. The squash bugs would probably attack me at this point if I went out there. We may get pumpkins or we may not … Damned bugs.
So much to learn!
Hopefully this weekend I can get a couple more rows cleaned out and prepped for the seedlings (assuming they germinate well) and I do need to do some rabbit processing as well. School starts next week and then it really will get crazy. I am excited about going back. I like the challenge of juggling things.
While the rabbits are not doing as well as I’d like them to be, the goats are. Except for Rose, who is a first-time freshener giving A LOT of milk, they are all fat, slick and sassy. I plan to get them bred as soon as they come into heat (or our buck gets big enough to breed them!), but that likely will not happen until it cools off a bit more. Over the weekend, I may take them down and let them stay with the bucks for a few hours to try to get them in the mood. Wally would like for me to breed them so they’ll freshen in March, but that means I’d have to try to keep them milking into January which likely will not happen. It has been my experience that goats tend to say, “I’m done!” in October or November and it is hard to keep them milking well beyond November. Goats are very seasonal, much more so than cows.
The job is still going really well. I was lucky to get it.
Until later …