Derris Dust D-day... Goodbye caterpillars!!!

LLLZ is talking about growing Capsicum, Tomato, Beetroot, Brusselsprouts, Beans, Sweetcorn, Zucchini, Broccoli from Hunter

Garden ready!

Uh oh… we’ve been away again!!!

But all is ok as I did have my lovely dad at the house so he made sure everything kept watered and hence our little veggie patch continues to grow :-)  Unfortunately he’s recently had a hernia operation, so weeding wasn’t on the cards… but Levi and I have got stuck into that since we got back with great vigour!  And, my dad kindly did the mowing… we are fortunate living on a farm to have a huge yard which means masses of mulch!!  I throw the grass clippings on as soon as I do any little patch of weeding as I don’t know when I’ll be back again to finish, and it makes such a difference. Levi’s a little legend with his wheelbarrow (great christmas present for anyone stuck for ideas for kids!) filling it with mulch, and dumping each load.

So for an update on our plants…

Our most exciting news is that Yates Derris Dust works!!! I gave two treatments a week apart and there is not a caterpillar or butterfly to be seen and the broccoli, kohl rabi and pak choy are streaking ahead!  Unfortunately our brussel sprouts are not… one has succumed, and the other appears so weakened I don’t think it will be producing anything.  Anyway, we’ll also try again when it’s a bit cooler as it seems just too hot for them here at the moment.

And the first broccoli head has appeared!!! I am so thrilled as this is actually the first broccoli in my life! I have attempted it a few times in the last 3 years with no success whatsoever… who knows why we’ve won this time???

Today we enjoyed (well Levi did) our first cherry tomato. Just one! Very exciting to see a little red peeping out!  We have quite a few green large tomatos as well so looking forward to that. I’m also glad to see the plants that I had thought were going to give up after being transplanted have bounced back. 

The first lot of sweetcorn have their tassels which is very exciting, so here’s hoping they are sweet!  And, almost all of the second planting have started up nice and healthy!

Our zucchini plants are going great guns and yes… I planted them too close to the potting shed and everything else and they will be overtaking everything! Anyway, mostly tomatos nearby which I think we’ll have excess of considering all the self sown ones continuing to pop up everywhere! I’m not sure if the zucchini aren’t getting enough water, as the first few zucchinies dropped their flowers when they were quite small and didn’t get any bigger… they also tasted slightly bitter. So I will have to check about harvest timing. 

Our dwarf beans continue to flourish and we can pick enough every second day for dinner which is great!

The little beetroot that I mpved to the garden bed before we left have dwindled in number from 10 to 4 , but here’s hoping we can keep those few growing. I guess it means it’s time to plant more seeds!

And the three little capsicum seedlings still don’t seem to have gotten any bigger, but I’m too afraind to plant them out as they are so tiny!  Out of our second (…or maybe about  5th) seed sowing, we only have one more coming up… so maybe capsicums just aren’t our thing!

The cucumber that I thought had ceased growing after being transplanted has up and started again! So looking forward to my favourite veggie soon! 

Unfortunately the repeated rockmelon and cucumber seed attempt has failed again. 

But the lovely purple chard plants that my friend kindly gave me are superb! Enjoyed them with our spring onions, olive oil and sour cream last night! Mmm..mmm!

So the joys of gardening continue…  the highs, lows, successes and failures… and the miracle of what can come from a seed :-)

Of course this time of year comes with so much busyness, and I’ve opted to work some extra days… but I’m sure I’ll still find a few minutes to chill out in the veggie patch each day with my kids to share the joy of gardening :-)

In every gardener there is a child who believes in The Seed Fairy. ~Robert Brault