Thanks so much for all your help on our first community workday! Both gardens got pretty much everything on their checklist completed and they both look wonderful and weed-free. At the Main Street garden, we also cut down some of the knotweed forest beyond the garden. Plus, at the High Plain garden, we got a nice sunshade up over a picnic table.
Viki's Advice Corner
Welcome to high summer! It was a cool May but a little dry. This trend is continuing into June except the temps have been more normal but also quite dry. That means starting to water regularly. You don't have to water daily unless you have seeds and seedlings that need the moisture. Established plants should get 1 inch per week. Water deeply around your tomatoes, peppers, cukes, beans, etc. Also earlier in the day or later in the afternoon has less evaporation. Keep the water directed to the ground, not on the plant itself.
While watering also check for early pests. We have seen some flea beetle damage and some cucumber beetles. Check the Bugs and Treatments pages to learn how to handle these critters. Familiarize yourself with the most common pests so you can quickly identify and take action.
It looks like we are off to a better start than last year for the garden as a whole. A few transplanted veggies have some yellowing of lower leaves. This is often due to a lack of nitrogen. If you didn’t add a pound of blood meal in April or May, it is not too late. Also direct fertilization with hand watering of fish emulsion mixture in a watering can is the only time I recommend watering directly on the plant. Do this mild boost every time you think of it.
Don’t forget to continue sowing of beans, carrots, arugula, cucumbers, and heat resistant greens. Tomato plants can still go in; they love the warm soil and bright sun.
Lastly, add some beautiful color and variety by adding flowers ( nasturtiums) and herbs ( dill, borage). They are great pollinators and harbor beneficial bugs that eat the bad bugs, e.g. aphids.
For more information, see these links:
Garden Gate's Summer Garden Checklist
Hudson Valley Seed's Guide to Beneficial Insects