current garden battles.

Growing squash is difficult for me. Primarily from squash bugs, though I have a fair amount of trouble with vine borers as well. Last year I had my first successful squash harvest, though I am not sure what to attribute that win to. I did use tobacco ash when I planted the seeds, but I had also done a controlled burn in the garden the fall before, so I may have just eliminated their ability to overwinter.

I am only growing a few squash plants this year. I had originally planned on growing zero, partially because they are so difficult to grow and partially because I didn’t like any of the squash we had grown last year. I do like eating squash quite a bit, so when I saw the honeynut squash and then the 898 squash, I made room for a few plants. I have four vines in total growing, with nasturtium in the middle.

Only one plant appears to be currently afflicted with squash bugs. I have been going out several times a day to do an egg check and kill any that I see. I got rid of a ton of eggs and I’ve only seen a few today, so hopefully I have gotten ahead of the game.

There are caterpillars eating the tomatoes. I had one Pink Arab tomato that was just starting to ripen, but I found a caterpillar munching on it, so the chickens had a nice little snack. I’m trying to spot them and relocate or let the chickens eat them. I found last year that borage seemed to help and there are several large volunteer borage plants around the tomatoes, so maybe we will get lucky and not have a ton of pressure this year.

There are beetles eating one of the grapevines. I’m killing them as I see them, but I just brewed a garlic/hot sauce spray that will hopefully deter them.

There was also a rabbit in the garden sniffing around the squash. If he goes after my watermelon I’m going to be pretty upset.

Speaking of – two decent sized watermelon are growing so far. The watermelon had kind of a slow start this year, but I’m hopeful we can get a few good ones in before the season is over.

The peppers seem to have rebounded. We have quite a few Thai hot peppers in the container plant. The ones in the ground have had a real struggle. There are various other hot pepper plants that are spread around the garden as I removed other items and needed cover.

The eggplant is starting to grow fairly quickly. I would like to get a few eggplants off of it, but it had such a slow start that I’m not sure anything will ever come of it.

Green beans, dry beans, and wax beans are all growing well. I actually didn’t realize one of the plants was a wax bean, so now I need to start harvesting those as well.

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