June 29, 2017
At this time last year, my basil was huge, okra was very large, volunteer pumpkins were taking over, and cucumbers were vining halfway up the trellis. My “Early Girl” tomatoes were already red and ready to pick, and I had several grape “Sugary” tomatoes ready to pick.
This year is a completely different story. After a very rainy May, we continued to have above average precipitation for June as well. I’m not sure if this is the problem or what, but this seems to be a very slow season for everything I’ve planted, and many things are just looking like they will never thrive.
A Few Quick Notes
Basil: puny in the new shadier beds (and being eaten by a rabbit I believe); added two large plants to beds 1 and 2 which are doing much better.
Zucchini: harvested exactly 1 zucchini squash; plants look like they are giving up.
Okra: I’ve lost 2.5 out of 4 okra plants; #3 looks like it could keel over any day now, and the only one to grow is probably going to make it, but is taking an eternity.
Tomatoes: Besides my 1 “Roma,” I planted only “Goliath” tomatoes which are 65-85 days until maturity. Due to their new location with less sunshine, I was expecting maturity closer to the 85th day. They are “indeterminate” vines which have been described as “vigorous.” See the pictures. Vigorous and out of control is more like it. I had to add even more rope to my system of support, and have been pruning low hanging offshoots to encourage growth that gets more sun. Have tons of fruit, nothing yet ready to pick. That final tomato plant volunteer that I thought was a “Sugary” grape from last year is also likely another Goliath. It is huge and fruiting very slowly.
Cantaloupe: Seems to be thriving all of a sudden in bed 1; would like to build a trellis to support and get it off the ground. Several budding fruit.
Potatoes: volunteers from compost pile, have harvested a few small “new potatoes” and put the rest back to continue to grow.
Cucumber: harvested 1; at least 8 large and perfectly round fruit have seemed to cease growth altogether. Vines not growing quite as quickly nor as tall as last year.
Mint: doing just fine.
Herbs: not thriving but not dying; harvesting as needed and all are still alive.
North Carolina Raised Beds and Container Gardens
Plans and Ideas
- Build trellis for cantaloupe.
- Direct pumpkins away from blueberries.
- A-frame trellis for compost pile?