If you read my recent blog posts “Have you thought of Starting a Vegetable Garden this year?”, and “Helpful Tips for Vegetable Gardening” you will know that I started planting in early March this year .The weather was perfect for planting. Unfortunately, Mother Nature wasn’t so kind for the rest of the month! We had a few cold drifts, even hail one night which caused some of my plants to suffer. This sort of thing happens and it is something that we just have to cooperate with since we have no control over the weather.
I had to pull out the cabbage because the combination of cool and damp weather caused a gray mold to form on the plants called Botrytis Blight. This happened last year as well and I was able to save the plants by removing the inner leaves that had the disease growing on them. This year I couldn’t do the same because the plants were simply too small and the disease had already effected the entire plant. I wasn’t able to re-plant new cabbage plants because they grow well in cooler temperatures. I will just have to wait until next fall! Glad there is plenty of cabbage at the grocery store!
Some of my bell pepper and squash plants didn’t survive the cold weather either. They vanished without a trace! This was a first time for me! The plants were simply too young and fragile for the cooler weather. I waited until the weather consistently warmed up and re-planted. The garden is looking great and I haven’t had any problems since! Phew! If you had any of the same issues that I did, not to worry we are still in planting season and you can still save your garden! If you didn’t, cheers to you and congratulations for surviving the challenging Spring weather this year!
While re-planting, I decided it was a good time to fertilize. The plants looked like they needed a little boost. I usually fertilize midway thru the growing season before the veggies/fruits start to grow. I used Dr. Earth Fertilizer for Organic Vegetable Gardens that I purchased from Simpson’s Nursery. Feel free to use your choice of fertilizer, I recommend using an organic fertilizer that will cover a large variety of crops. You don’t want to use fertilizers that contain chemicals on your plants because you will soon be eating them. One of the most important benefits of growing your own veggies is to eat organic. Follow the instructions on the fertilizer package and be sure to water the roots well after fertilizing.
I hope you don’t run into this problem but I want to mention it because it is common. You may experience pests on your plants, like aphids, thrips or whiteflies. You will either see the pests on your plants or notice that bugs are eating your plant leaves. A great solution is to use Neem Oil, a pesticide free pest control solution that makes the plants taste bitter so pests will stay away without harming the insects that are beneficial to your plants like bees and ladybugs. Neem Oil has worked great for me and will solve your pest and disease problems fast!
Many of the plants are beginning to flower and grow rapidly. It’s amazing to see what sunshine, water and fertilizer will do to your plants. I can’t wait to start eating the delicious home grown vegetables soon! The rewards of gardening will reap a little later this year but it is well worth it and rewarding in so many ways! How is your garden growing?