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A Beautiful Friday in the Garden

March 11th, 2011

APHID UPDATE: The aphids have now moved on to cabbage and chard and Pat is fighting what seems to be a losing battle! She said that with the advent of the warmer weather and sunshine that the aphid population seems to be exploding. Her advice: just be diligent and continue spraying with the Safer Soap as much as possible, as well as following the other tips from our previous post. And pay attention to all of your tasty leafy veggies – not just kale- because they are definitely not immune either!

Yep… the aphids have gotten to the cabbage.  Now that’s nasty!
This poor little kale plant was stunted from all of the aphid damage!

Other than the bad news on the aphid front, everything else in the garden is doing well and it is a beautiful sunny day! The artichokes are sprouting, the calendula adds a vibrant touch of orange all over the garden, and the newly planted radishes and nasturtiums are starting to sprout!  Enjoy some recent photos below and have a great weekend!

The calendula is spectacular right now!
Now I want a Greek salad!

Maybe the chard is starting to have an aphid problem too, but it is all over the garden and still looks delicious to me!
The purple hues of the kale and cabbage complement each other nicely, don’t you think?
Pat is working diligently away at spraying the kale with the Safer Soap to rid it of aphids.
Go, Mr. Ladybug, go!  Eat those aphids so I can eat this delicious artichoke.
Ok so these aren’t in the garden, but are so spectacular I had to share them anyway.  The tulip trees on campus are breathtaking right now!

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Including Flowers in Your Vegetable Garden

April 22nd, 2010

If you have a small plot, sometimes you just plain don’t want to give up the space to plant flowers for the sake of a few blossoms, but you should try it out this season! They don’t really need much space and the benefits of having them there for the purposes of attracting pollinators and beneficial insects may just amplify the production of the common edibles that you do grow. Plus, it’s just nice to diversify your garden texture, design and color.

Below are some of the flowers we grow to mix things up a little; some of them are even edible!

YARROW
It is quite drought tolerant and known for attracting butterflies. In the middle ages, before the use of hops in beer, yarrow was used to flavor beer.


SUNSET CRIMSON SNAPDRAGONS

SWEET ALYSSUM

RUDBEKIA (Black-Eyed Susan) These can grow between 18 and 36 inches high in full sun and will tolerate dray conditions. Let the bloom dry out on the plant and after the petals fall off, pick the seen head. Running your thumbnail along the seedpod will give you tiny rudbekia seeds.

CALENDULA
These are profuse bloomers if constantly deadheaded. It is edible and known as “poor man’s saffron” because its color and mild peppery taste make it an inexpensive alternative for the Spanish condiment.


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