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August 2013, New England

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  Goosegirl on 8/14/2013, 8:03 pm

Same thing happening here in the upper midwest - it was 44F this morning and my tomatoes won't ripen!  Supposed to be warming up for the next week.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/15/2013, 9:38 am

It was 46F this morning....... but garden looks great!

I have to say that from now on I am going to be planting my potatoes in the middle of June. I have not had any troubles with potato bug this year and I really like that. Seems to be the same for squashes.........

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  mollyhespra on 8/15/2013, 9:43 am

Is it true that if you top off your toms it will *force* the plant to ripen the fruit that's left?  It makes logical sense, but I read somewhere recently that it doesn't *actually* work.  That the plant will ripen what it's got when it will.  I dunno...has anyone ever done a side-by-side comparison?

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/15/2013, 9:48 am

Topping off the plant will not force ripening, but it will make the plant use it's resources elsewhere, typically side shoots or fruit development.

http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/load/cornucop/msg071742353190.html


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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/15/2013, 1:37 pm

Sounds like everyones gardens are doing great despite the cold nights.  We have hi 50's at nite so I'm not worried yet.  This weather is so stellar that I took today and tomorrow off work....

...only to find out from a gardening neighbor that I have wilt on one of my Sweet 100's. Apparently she's lost all her toms to it already.  Here I thought the water wasn't getting down there and practically drowned it.  I'm wondering if I cut the top off if the lower toms will ripen, anyone know?  It looks like this at the top only:

Also, one of the SuperSonics has leaves rolling up like a taco shell.  I read online that it's stress.  Needs Valium I guess. rock on   AND I saw a SVB flitting around my new baby zucchini, spag & acorn squashes.  I thought they were gone now...?  As well as 3 cabbage moths around the kohlrabi.  My 8 covered broccoli seedlings are now down to 2 from being eaten by something. 

BUT the greens & beets are fantastic as usual, and we're eating toms everyday.  They usually have a bite out of them from critters but we cut away the bird & chippy lips and eat them anyway.  

I may decide to stick to what grows best with the least amount of work for next year.  But ya never know...

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  quiltbea on 8/15/2013, 2:40 pm

Cape....That photo you posted may be caused by too much water.  Wait a few days to see if it looks better in the sunshiney weather.
I've got blight and its advancing fast.  I don't have the energy to fight it so I'm going to take what harvest I can and enjoy it.  I have already been putting roasted tomatoes in the freezer so I'll have some thru the winter months.

Next year, if we remain in Maine (no word on moving plans yet), means big changes for me and my veggie garden.  I have to trudge up and down a steep hill to get to my raised beds.  That takes more energy than I like.  I have also tumbled down that hill 3 times in the last 2 years and have been lucky not having suffered any breaks.  With my bones getting more brittle as the years pass, I'm not going to take a chance next year.

I'm thinking I need less energy spent in the raised beds so maybe annual flowers and possibly Brussels sprouts, which are rather carefree from spring thru early winter, is in their future.  I'll keep the asparagus, strawberry and blueberry patches which can pretty much take care of themselves as perennials.

Any veggies will be in my flower beds by my kitchen door (though its on the west side of the house and gets only afternoon sun) and in pots.  I have to report that my potted Alibi cukes and Redskin sweet peppers are doing great this year.  They are in my future along with some potted herbs.   Yep, pots and my flower beds will produce a limited amount of fresh veggies for me.

I have to report that the Red Pear tomato I have is producing little pear-shaped fruits, and the flavor isn't the best but its OK.

I have lots of blossoms on my eggplants but the fruits aren't maturing very fast.  Of course, they like nites in the 60s and ours have dropped to the 40s and 50s lately.

I hope everyone is enjoying the mild weather.  Our tourists and lake people are loving it.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/15/2013, 11:58 pm

I hope you still wind up enjoying your changed circumstances, quiltbea. It sounds like tabletop beds would be great for you. And maybe bush tomatoes instead of vines?

If you do containers, some self-watering ones might be perfect for you, considering how little maintenance they take. I've only ever built one myself, and too late in the season(just a week ago), but it's kind of fun waiting to see how successful it will be. It's got a supposedly frost-friendly cherry tomato growing in it.

Between self-watering containers and tabletops, perhaps you'll still be able to do quie a bit of gardening. I'm crossing my fingers for you that you find a happy solution!

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  NHGardener on 8/17/2013, 8:04 pm

Well, my garden has stalled. I'm thinking maybe it's because it's been so dry. Are you all watering? By August plants are so well established I hadn't really thought of watering, but with day after day - and now hot days - in the forecast with no rain, I'm thinking I better water. Maybe the tomatoes will ripen.

Are you?

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/17/2013, 8:13 pm

I water every other day if it doesn't rain. My san marzarnos are just starting to ripen.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  mollyhespra on 8/17/2013, 9:17 pm

Everything is really pokey this year, NHG.  First the never-ending days of rain & clouds, now the dry days & (for me) cold nights.  It's been a weird summer for growing (or trying to grow) things.  I try to water every other day but I noticed today some cracking on the two toms I've got ripening which tells me I should try to do a daily watering to see if that will help even things out for the plants more.

So far my total harvest for this year has consisted in: 3-4 heads of broc, 1 tomato, 1 eggplant, 9 summer squashes, a few heads of garlic (though there's more in the ground still), a pound or two of peas earlier on, and a few heads of lettuce.  OH!  And a few radishes. 

I've still got a TON of green tomatoes, green peppers, green (string) beans, dry beans, cukes, corn, carrots & onions in the ground plus the 3 summer squash plants and one spaghetti squash that I'm holding out my hopes for.

At this point, I'm just hoping to be able to get one ripe fruit from those that haven't come in yet.  Just to get a taste to know if I should try growing that particular variety again.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  NHGardener on 8/17/2013, 11:39 pm

Thanks - guess I should be watering then. So tomorrow.

Well, it could happen that summer will stick around longer than usual, considering we're getting our mid-80s next week instead of the 1st week of August. So maybe our pokey veggies will have time to ripen after all.

Either that or I'm moving south.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/18/2013, 11:26 am

I found some elderberries before the birds got them all. Hurrah!

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  WriterCPA on 8/18/2013, 11:46 am

Congratulations on your success. What time should I stop in for a slice of pie?Very Happy 

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/18/2013, 12:00 pm

@WriterCPA wrote:Congratulations on your success.  What time should I stop in for a slice of pie?Very Happy 
not making pie. Very Happy Making cordial, it should be ready next year.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  NHGardener on 8/18/2013, 12:15 pm

Yay elderberries! I planted a bush this year, from a cutting from someone else's. Looks like there's a long way to go. I wouldn't mind having about 20 of those around. Of course, I have chickens to share them with.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/18/2013, 6:01 pm

NHG, I water my SFG twice a week whether it needs it or not.  I use the bucket method but today is the 2nd time I used the hose.  I didn't like doing it but my back was so sore from turning my compost pile that I just couldn't lift those 5 gal buckets of water.

Todays harvest:
Not shown - 3 grocery bags of greens, 1lb of lettuce, bunches of small round onions & beets.  We had roasted veggies for dins! I love you 

I'm really ready to try to save my cucs from the PM as the Straight 8s are DEEELICIOUS! There are quite a few babies on my newest plants so I tried the hydrogen peroxide spritz on the PM yesterday but didn't notice any diff today. I'll put the bkg soda spritz on in a couple of days since I know that that works.

My neighbors have been stopping by this past week exclaiming on the health of my garden and the size of the toms.  Among other things the neighbors all seem to be having tom problems - too small, not ripening, wilt & blight.  I walked around the hood checking out their gardens today. Then as I was watering my own garden I was wondering how many of their problems stemmed from using cold city water all the time.  And of course none of them were pulling off the suckers.  This helped me to realize the importance of both of these suggestions of Mels - warm bucket water & pulling suckers - and how in my garden it seems to result in early sizable happy tomatoes.

Speaking of tom problems, the birds and chippies have been biting the ripe ones before I do, so now all the blushing toms get covered with a knee-hi.  So today there are about 4 or 5 knee-hi hanging off toms in each box:

All for now.
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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  sanderson on 8/18/2013, 8:25 pm

Beautiful veggies!

What a great idea for knee highs.  Only a another gardener would think that knee highs in the garden are normal!!

I have an old collection from when I worked!!  Maybe for cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash, also!


Last edited by sanderson on 8/18/2013, 8:34 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo)

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  sanderson on 8/18/2013, 8:28 pm

Camp,  I, and probably others, have it on our calendars.  "New Hampshire, August 2014."  See ya.Very Happy

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/18/2013, 8:42 pm

@sanderson wrote:Camp,  I, and probably others, have it on our calendars.  "New Hampshire, August 2014."  See ya.Very Happy
I missed something here............... but what? oh1 The Cordial? it will be drinkable by Christmas, but if it ages it is so much smoother on the palate.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  mollyhespra on 8/18/2013, 8:47 pm

@camprn wrote:
@sanderson wrote:Camp,  I, and probably others, have it on our calendars.  "New Hampshire, August 2014."  See ya.Very Happy
I missed something here............... but what?
Maybe the elderberry cordial you're making for us?  bottoms up

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/18/2013, 8:48 pm

@mollyhespra wrote:
@camprn wrote:
@sanderson wrote:Camp,  I, and probably others, have it on our calendars.  "New Hampshire, August 2014."  See ya.Very Happy
I missed something here............... but what?
Maybe the elderberry cordial you're making for the party?  bottoms up
Thanks Molly, Very Happy I finally figured it out......... I was busy thinking about making cheese when I read the post by sanderson, LOL.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  sanderson on 8/18/2013, 10:04 pm

So it's Christmas in New Hampshire next year!!  santa rendeer

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/20/2013, 5:01 pm

So my gilbertie tomatoes seem to be putting on a foot of growth a week. There is some type of squash volunteer too...... Won't know what it is until it starts putting out female flowers.


Peppers looking good.


Some type of mystery volunteer tomato in the corner of the pepper box. It seems pretty happy there.


Another volunteer tomato, a yellow pear.



Flowers are keeping all the pollinators happy.




51 days until my average first frost date and I just sowed some lettuce, spinach and cilantro/corriander today. Fingers crossed it all makes it to a harvest.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  quiltbea on 8/20/2013, 8:31 pm

camprn.....Your garden is looking really good.  My tomatoes have nearly all succumbed to blight in the raised beds, even the hybrids.  The six plants in my flower beds are perfect, no blight, with lush leaves, but late since they don't get as much sun (only afternoon western sun I'm afraid).   I'm going to try to cook the raised beds with dark plastic covering next spring to kill that blight.

Your peppers are looking terrific and productive, too.

Good luck on the fall sowings of spinach, etc.  Its a good time for it now.

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Re: August 2013, New England

Post  camprn on 8/20/2013, 8:43 pm

Thanks QB, so sorry about your toms demise. I had some blight last year and ended up treating with copper, with good affect. This year I have seen, here and there, suspect lesions on leaves and those get immediately pruned and put on the burn pile.

It is my understanding that we are fortunate in the north as both late and early blight do not survive freezing temperatures, unless it is on surviving plant tissue, like a potato that got left in the ground and come out of dormancy the following spring.

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Re: August 2013, New England

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