Garden winding down

Pulled out the remaining tomato, cucumber and squash plants and was pleased to find only minimal signs of nematodes. So the combination of things I did going into this season worked. Now the question is can I back off on the next planting or should I do another round of all out aggressive planting. I’ll cogitate on that for the next couple of months and plan on re establishing the garden mid September. In the mean time I’m solarizing sections and letting the Golden Guardian marigolds spread like wildfire. That continues the assault on the nematodes even when nothing else is going on. I’ll have another 5-6 cubic yards of compost to distribute just before new planting time.

I wasn’t pleased with the amount of squash and tomatoes harvested so I plan a new tact on that. The U of F county extension offices will do limited soil analysis for $1 so I think I’ll get samples from half a dozen locations in the garden and see what they have to say – am I missing anything critical or do I have too much of something? I’ve never worried about any of these subtleties before because the overall quality of the soil was so poor and the nematodes took out those things prone to nematode damage quickly. I feel pretty good that now I’m working with decent soil and need to focus on exactly how that soil is constituted and how to amend it to optimize growing veggies.

A scientific breakthroughs – I saw one on the tube yesterday that will change my life. I’ve mentioned the feared and dreaded yellow flies and how vicious and prolific they are this season. Seems that’s the result of a very wet spring last year. We’re at the tail end of their one year life cycle and in a few days, it will be all over – I hope. A local news segment described just how unusual the situation is and then went on to describe the sticky traps I had fabricated but with an interesting twist. I had been told that 16”-20” beach balls painted black was the appropriate carrier for the sticky goop. But trying to deal with a feather light, round object while applying an axel grease like substance is really messy. So is trying to fabricate and attach a harness to the ball. I’m trying to figure out all kinds of holding fixtures so that next time I’m in the building mode, it will be simpler. Forget the beach ball, use a plastic milk jug. It’s got a nice base, rectangular sides, and a built in attachment handle which can be left un-gooped. Wonder if there’s been a patent application made? Damn, why didn’t I think of that! Bet I could extend the science by considering some of the plastic containers Nancy gets with detergent. Run experiments to see if milk container beats Downey container beats clorox or Tide bottles. I could publish scientific papers – field just can’t be crowded. Now when I go to Costco, I’m scanning the shelves for interesting containers that can be recycled into yellow fly traps. Gives me a totally new perspective.

I’ve been wrestling with giving Yobama an idea that would cement his re-election. Ok, here it is. He should put forth a plan to move the troops from Afghanistan to the Mexican border. It gets him out of Afghanistan without it looking like a cut and run move and makes it sound like he really wants to do something about securing our borders. He doesn’t really have to do anything but give a good speech.

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