Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Trouble in the garden

We have trouble in paradise! Out of the 14 tomato plants we have which were grown from seeds, these few show signs of sickness. After much research I have narrowed it down to three different diseases that it could be..... Can you identify what each plant might have?

  1. Verticuillium wilt- This name can be misleading, as sometimes the leaves will turn yellow, dry up and never appear to wilt. Verticillium wilt is caused by a soil-borne fungus and it can affect many different vegetables. The fungus can persist in the soil for many years, so crop rotation and selection of resistant varieties is crucial. Symptoms include: wilting during the hottest part of the day and recovering at night, yellowing and eventually browning between the leaf veins starting with the older, lower leaves and discoloration inside the stems. Verticillium Wilt inhibits the plants ability to take in water and nutrients and will eventually kill the plant. Verticillium wilt is more pronounced in cool weather. (Verticillium wilt can often be confused with Fusarium wilt.)
  2. Gray leaf spot- Gray Leaf Spot affects only the leaves of tomatoes, starting with the oldest leaves. Symptoms: Small, dark spots that can be seen on both the top and bottom surfaces of the leaves. The spots enlarge and turn a grayish brown. Eventually the centers of the spots crack and fall out. Surrounding leaf areas will turn yellow and the leaves will dry and drop. Fruit production is inhibited.
  3. Bacterial speck- There are several bacterial problems that affect tomatoes including Bacterial Speck. Symptoms: Tiny, raised, dark spots, usually with a white border.

Two of the three are incurable which would suck given the trouble I've had just to get them to grow.  The third can be treated with copper spray BUT I'm unsure what these babies have.

Help a sister out

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

DIY Earthbox

After a failed attempt at finding straw to grow in, I decided that earthboxes were the way to go for us. Beside the voles and moles will not get to the plants using this box. Off to the big blue store I went and got myself a  pvc pipe, pipe cutter and a tote.

Here is what you'll need:

10' 1-1 1/2" pvc pipe - around $2
Pipe cutter - around $10
Tote - around $5 
3/8 and 9/16 spade bits
Carpet cutter 

Why use an Earthbox? You will use less water + less fertilizer + sometimes yield double the produce = saving you money. Weeds got your garden down in the dumps? Earthbox gardening will help that issue since weeds don't get a chance to start
How often do I water it? Every few days when the plants are young and maybe every other day once mature. It depends on the time of season and heat.

 Step 1: Cut about (12-15) pvc pieces to 2 1/2"  then measure the tote from top to bottom adding about 4 inches and cut another pvc that size, that will be where you water.

 Step 2: Cut the top of the lid. Be careful not to cut yourself! although it would be an interesting coversation starter at parties I'm sure you'd love to have all 10 fingers.

Step 3: Using the 9/16 spade bit drill several holes into the cut portion of the lid. You can be ocd with this if you like, I didn't do too much thinking on this part.

 Step 4: Using the 3/8 spade bit, drill a hole on each of the sides about 3" from the bottom.

 Step cinco and seis: Place your cut pvc in ocd fashion and place the cut drilled portion of the lid on top of the pipe pieces. You will need to cut a notch portion out on the corner of the cut lid so the longer pvc pipe will fit nicely.

 Final step: Ta DA!!!!

Fill with your dirt and then water and get to growing. Don't forget to add mulch on top to prevent weeds and drying the top soil out.

I planted pumpkins in this batch of earthboxes and watermelon in the other two on the left side of the garden near the corn patch. I'm wondering what kind of trellis I should make for these babies? Any ideas?

Monday, April 15, 2013

{Giveaway Results} Garden Collection Giveaway

An awesome thank you to those who read and entered the Garden collection giveaway 

Drum roll please..........................

Our winner is Sara Pilato who chose the Southern Collection for this years garden. Sara please contact me at ladysunshinevents{at}live{.}com . You have until April 19th to claim your prize.

You all have a great week and keep a look out for a new giveaway next month.

Bedroom updating and Birthday parties.

We have been busy but it's great! We had the RAD race and harvested some yummy veggies then traded some of eggs and did more yard work.

So far we've harvested in April:
Belle radish:  12.4 oz
Icicle radish: 14.6oz
Bok choy: 1lb 11.9oz
Black leaf lettuce: 14.6 oz
Snow peas: 2.8oz
Asian Salad: 1lb 08 oz

 We are about 1/4 done in our bedroom for decorating and painting, I just need to get off my butt find the time to start our dresser then get paint going in the room. Here are some inspirations and a thought board I made for our room.

 I took the barn painting inspiration from houseofsmith and used in our upcycle project for barn doors in our room.

 The hubster agreed that once I get the bedroom done we could start working on a different room. I wonder if meant the bathroom was included in that agreement? Either way I can not decide on the bathroom style but I sure love these inspirations.

As for this week it is full of organizing for a garage sale in the coming weekends, prepping for my oldest sons birthday party, and finally getting all my earthboxes done and planted ... There will be a short tutorial on how to make those this week.

My son loves all things batman right now and he was totally thrilled when I agreed to a batman party for him. In pure Kim fashion, I have of course already sketched out a few details on the party.

I ordered the cutest favor bags from Etsy the other day and need to rummage around to find some boxes so I can start the pinata. 

What is going on in your neck of the woods?

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Garden collection GIVEAWAY!!

I know many of you are starting your summer garden and what is better than free stuff?! We had planned on growing several plants of each type of pumpkin and melon but the area will not be ready for planting until next year. I will only be able to plant 1-2 per type in an Earthbox and will have extra seeds (major sad face) but I'm sure we'll be able to plant in the pumpkin patch next year.

Let's start the summer garden growing off right. One lucky person will get either Botanical Interests Southern Cooking Seed Collection or Baby Vegetable Seed Collection . All you have to do is comment below with your name and which one you want to win. Deadline for the giveaway is April 12th at midnight (EST).

Here is what is included in the Southern collection:

Bean Bush Baby Lima Henderson's Organic (15 grams)
Bean Southern Cowpea California Blackeye #5 (25 grams)
Collards Georgia Southern (6 grams)
Mustard Southern Giant Curled (5 grams)
Okra Clemson Spineless 80 (5 grams)
Turnip Purple Top White Globe (8 Grams)
Watermelon Crimson Sweet (2 Grams)

Here is what is included in the Baby Veg collection:

Bean Bush Tavera Organic (18 Grams)
Beet Early Wonder Organic (2 Grams)
Carrot Baby Little Finger (1.5 Grams) 
Cucumber Homemade Pickles (1.50 Grams)
Lettuce Mesclun Gourmet Baby Greens Organic (1 Gram) 
Radish Easter Egg Blend (4 Grams) 
Squash Summer Baby Round Zucchini (3 Grams)

Happy gardening! 

*Entering more than once will disqualify you*

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

April To Do

Being back in Georgia is wonderful but I don't recall having so many hot days. I'm learning very fast that our short crop season here in the deepest part of Georgia is SHORT. One of my Chinese cabbage have bolted before forming (major sad face) and I suspect that a couple of my bok choy might be bolting, luckily I can make stir fry out of the bok choy. Do you know if I can cook with the chinese cabbage that has bolted and not formed its main head?

Our garden projects are trudging along..... With the rains we've had over the past month we've learned the importance of having proper drainage. This spring/summer it's my hubsters main goal to get the garden filled with rock (for erosion prevention) instead of the wood cuts like we originally wanted and dig a french drain in three sections of the yard long enough to reach about 20 feet past the main garden into what my hubster called the "waterway easement". To help prevent water just pooling in the yard he is installing grates that will lead to the french drains thus pushing all the water into the easement and into the back of the property.

So far this past month we've harvested

Radishes- 1.75 lbs
Lettuce- 9.3 oz
Bok choy- 1.7 oz

I can not wait till may to harvest more things!! This year and my hubster has to remind me, is a trial year for us. Many things I've learned in this new garden in Georgia is 1) I need to start my cool crops about a month earlier 2) utilized my row covers better and 3) don't push yourself too much otherwise you'll get burned out.

Start outdoors

Swiss chard
Winter squash

We decided to move the lawn schedule ahead a month and treated the lawn for bug, mainly mole crickets. They are wrecking our backyard lawn and I've even spotted the bastards in my corn patch.

This month I will be working on adding three bean nets to the beds, making a few trellises and earthboxes, adding dirt to the final boarder beds and finishing up my white garden.

What is on your To Do?

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