Mite-y Rose

I was in the garden yesterday with a friend and got inspired (read: shamed into) to doing some deadheading today on the New Dawn rose. It looks a lot better, but now I realize what was causing the petals to look so damaged — it wasn’t the cold weather as I assumed. It is mites. I had seen them earlier but I just ignored them. Maybe I shouldn’t have….

I did spray the bush with a bottle of Earthtone 3n1 that has been lying around the house for some time. The big flush of blooms is past, but the shrub will bloom throughout the summer. I hope this helps it look good until the black spot and Japanese beetles take it.

I’m super happy about the beans! I planted according to the instructions — the Garden of Eden beans I planted after soaking are sprouting. The bush beans I planted 1/4 inch deep are sprouting, and so are the ones I planted 1 inch deep. I’m going out on a limb and saying that soil temperature makes more difference in bean germination that planting depth. Also, the beans planted 1/4 inch deep are popping out of the soil in some places as they swell and the little sprout comes out. I pushed them back in — who knows if they’ll survive — but it’s an interesting process to watch.

The established beans look good:

Look at the broken off beans! They look so healthy:

My thumb is for scale

Sydney’s zinnias are looking pretty good:

I haven’t put a picture of the whole garden patch, so here are some:

The peas are looking nice. The ones I picked this week are tasting sweeter than the first ones:

The zephyr squash is sprouting, but you have to look closely:

The tomatoes and kohlrabi each got a dose of Miracle-Gro and some water. The tomatoes are healthy and the kohlrabi looks okay. I think the Sevin did its job:

I was cleaning near the old railroad tie bed next to the shed (we made it for the kids and then thought we’d use it as a cut flower bed but let it go) and found some sage I planted years ago is thriving. It looks very good, actually:

I spent several hours outside on Monday because the weather was so nice. I got all five formal beds cleaned out and ready for hedge planting, plus I cut all of the grass because Jared couldn’t get to it Saturday (I made him clean out the metal shed instead, which, as it turned out, needed a new floor). I wanted boxwood for the hedge, but I read in several places that they are so susceptible to blight that most gardens are pulling out all their English boxwood and replacing them with alternate plants. I can buy small yew plants for about $400 and wait 10 years for them to grow in, or I found a place online called instant hedge that will ship me 40 inch sections of 6 foot hedge for $320 each for a total of $2560. So six times the price for a hedge that’s pruned to shape and ready to go….. I’m definitely tempted. I’ll wait and see what Jared says, but I’m definitely leaning toward the instant hedge.

Tuesday I did more work and got the grass cut down in the walkways, plus sprayed for more weeds and spread some compost around. I hauled the stuff Jared got out of the shed to the dump plus some other junk that was lying around. We need to decide what to do with the bicycles….

I pulled my second cherry tomato today! I ate the other and it was pretty tart, but nothing beats a homegrown tomato:

It’s been a gorgeous spring (aside from the hail storm), and the garden is looking better than it has in years. I’m very excited and hopeful that we will have a good year with lots of healthy vegetables to eat, and maybe even enough to share or put up.