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Perfect weather and it is the end of June!

June 25, 2017
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Put my order in now for the rest of the summer to feel like today!  What a wonderful day to work in the garden.  The humidity was low and the temperatures were balmy. It was hard to come back inside.  I did get quite a bit done in the yard and had a great time doing it.  I did find more weeds than I would have liked, but I weed-eated, mowed, hand-pulled and hoed.  Am I weed free now–only in my dreams!

My hardy hibiscus are beginning to bloom and I adore the large showy flowers, but so does the mallow saw fly. They are the insect culprit that turns the leaves into lace.    Although I looked, I couldn’t find the larvae, but I am sure it was hiding.  Even though it does make the plants look abysmal, they usually bounce back.

If you love the purple fruits on the beautyberry in the fall, you should also enjoy the smaller, and less show blooms that are on the plants now.     Everywhere you see a ring of blooms, you will have a ring of berries in the fall.

My summer annuals are coming along nicely and while I like them all, I have really been enjoying the torenia or wishbone flower.  I have two different shades of purple and they are filling in nicely with no problems.    They get their common name because the stamens are shaped like a wishbone in the center of the blooms.

Not only are my ornamentals doing well, but I am beginning to harvest summer crops too. I have one pepper that I am not sure where I purchased it from, but I am loving it. I couldn’t find a tag, so I researched it and I believe it is a ‘Fish’ pepper. It has lovely variegated leaves and even the fruits are variegated–so it would serve double duty as an ornamental and an edible.   Supposedly this heirloom hot pepper plant  gets its name from being used to season fish and shellfish recipes in the 1940’s, although the pepper may actually date to the 1800’s.     I staked more of my tomatoes today, fertilized and watered.  My okra is growing as are my squash, but since I planted late, right now all I have are male blooms–females should follow as I do have full sun.  Now I just hope the bees help me out this time.

I have been hearing good reports about yesterday’s advanced MG training in Russellville on raised bed gardening.  I did get one picture (thanks Valerie) so thought I would share.  We are educating folks with advanced training all over this state.  Great job Pope County.

I hope everyone had at least a little time out in the garden–and I can only hope we have more days like this–but unfortunately, I am back at work tomorrow.

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