Friday, June 26, 2009

More Garden

Here's what's happening in the garden today. First of all, it's a beautiful day.

Mr. Gnome can't believe how tall the onions have grown.

He also mentioned that we have a tomato. I was like, "Yeah, right." And he's all "I'm not kidding. Go check it out." So I did:


I was sitting on the deck sewing up a shirt that Stanley ripped on a chair while he was trying to squeeze by me in the dining room, when the squirrel came by. I'm pretty sure it's always the same squirrel that I see on the deck. She's rather large and lacks the fear I see in most other squirrels. She hung out for a while, giving herself a little scratch/tongue-bath session on the railing. I video'd it with my new camera but I am having trouble uploading it, so you're going to have to settle for a still photo.

She's pissed that I'm sitting on her deck. She spitefully notified me that I had messed up and put the ugly side of the stitches on the outside of the shirt. I was like "No way." And she was like "Yah, biatch!" And I was all, "No I di'in't." And she's like "Holla!!"

We have 12 zucchini plants. So far. New ones sprout every few days. I googled how many zucchinis can be expected from each plant, and the only example I found was 24. So we might expect nearly 300 zucchini this season. This causes me to worry, and Stanley is worried as well, as indicated by the following quotes: "That's awesome!" "Yay, lots of recipes we can try." "It's okay, we can give the extras to people."

Yeah but 300.

I bought a pitchfork so I can aerate the compost now and then. The little piece of wood and my bare hands were (literally!) just not cutting it. A shovel never worked; I couldn't shove it into the compost effectively. So I turned it with a pitchfork for the first time and it worked pretty well. I learned a lot about compost during this exercise. Here is some of what I learned.

  1. Turning compost is subjectively disgusting (if you're squeamish, skip to #2). The main element that contributes to the grossness is a surprise factor, in that you don't know what you're going to discover with each turn of the pitchfork. I impaled a potato (a whole potato, yes I know I should have cut it up first, but it was from a big bag of old potatoes and I did NOT want to spend time chopping up old potatoes. Next time, I will, because they are not decomposing very quickly) and a string of off-white slime oozed out of it. Was not expecting slime.
  2. Compost can emit very strong wafts of various unrecognizable and vaguely recognizable odors. The compost doesn't smell in general, but turning it unleashes all the odors that have been covered.
  3. Seeds in the compost often sprout. On a whim I took a clove of garlic that had sprouted roots and about 6 inches of deformed stalks, and planted it in one of the red pots that had an onion in it that had not sprouted a flower as the other one did. I put the non-growing onion in the compost. Whole. Yes, I know. We ate a cantaloupe this week, and the seeds went in the compost, so we may have some cantaloupe growing someday. This happens to Stanley's mom all the time, and she just lets it grow and eats the melons, as long as they haven't crossbred with something different that would affect the taste. Apparently this year they crossbred with squash. According to Richard Nixon, this would be a good reason to abort the cantasquash. Squasheloupe.
  4. I've been adding all our food waste (except meat), plus extra brown matter (leaves, old mulch) each time I add food, and having been doing this for 6 weeks, and the pile has remained the same size throughout. It's like magic. A perfect waste disposal system.
  5. The food I added at the beginning has decomposed. The only recognizable food left is stuff we have put in there from the last week, and whole things. Whole potatoes, whole onions.
Have a great weekend!!

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