Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Loose Ends

I'm kind of at loose ends today. We got a little rain last night(and the night before) but we need more. It is, however, too wet to work in the garden. All the beans and squash that are ready are harvested and frozen(or eaten), the weekly bread baking is done. The first flush of tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers are now two quarts of gazpacho that was delicious for dinner last night and will be again.

I did go out and stand in the garden for an hour or so and just listened and absorbed the activity of the bees as they industriously visit each squash and melon blossom and search the rows of butter beans for just opening blooms. I am overjoyed at the number of honey bees in action. Last year it seemed there were more bumblebees than anything else and it is good to see all the honey bees hard at work. They seem to be effective too since there are a good number of acorn, butternut and various melons ripening. Never have much success with melons but this year might be the charm. In spite of the bee's hard work the cucumbers and zucchini are a disappointment. I expected to be overrun but only a few of each so far. Both are doing so poorly that I planted more in one of the raised beds up by the house.

I also spent a good while this morning watching three newly fledged red headed woodpeckers at the suet feeder. For such young ones it is fun to see them bravely fend off the crowd of blue jays that want access to the feeder. The little woodpeckers just stand their ground and stare down the noisy jays who finally give up and fly away. Sometimes there are as many as 10 jays fluttering at the little red heads but they stand their ground. The only time they give way are when mom and pop show up for their share.

I have work to do in the garden when it dries. We harvested potatoes and beets and hence have two rows that need planting with something and the pea bed is still fallow and should be prepared as well. It won't be but a week or so and the Boston soup and October beans will be dry enough for harvesting and shelling as well. We are staying ahead of the tomatoes for the moment but it will soon be time to begin serious canning. Barring some disaster there will be many quarts of tomatoes to get in jars very soon.

I've got a couple of errands to run for Madam this afternoon and I have to go get 2$ worth of lottery tickets...the big prize is now $133 Million and even with the astronomical odds against winning I can't see not throwing away 2 bucks on a couple of chances. Whoops! I hear thunder so we may get another shower soon...we need it so I am not complaining. I haven't had to mow for several weeks and the lawn is pretty brown. While I don't enjoy mowing I really need the clippings for mulch. Lots of mulch is the only thing that will keep a garden healthy in the heat of a Georgia summer not to mention it keeps down the number of weeds you have to pull.

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