Political Commentary

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

From the Gardens Registrar: What is Bugging You?; Our Spiffy New Weed Pile and How to Use It; Dragonflies and Damselflies; Dill; No Workday This Weekend

Hello Gardeners,

WHAT BUGS DO YOU HAVE? – After the first wave of potato beetles appeared in the gardens, we discussed spraying with Spinosad, but we never actually did it. Since then, I’ve heard that some people still have them, but others don’t.  Also, I haven’t seen any Mexican bean beetles (yet). Japanese beetles, on the other hand, are all over my plot, and throughout the gardens, in great numbers.

So what’s going on in your plot? Do you have any of these pests? Cucumber beetles? Squash borers? Please let me know. And remember – the simplest, most effective, and least-harmful-to-the-environment method of getting rid of insect pests such as beetles is picking them off your plants, and dumping them into a pail of water with a little dish soap in it. (The soap will keep the insects from flying out of the pail.) You can also put a dropcloth on the ground, and shake your plants to knock the insects on to the cloth, then scoop them up and remove them.

Some people claim that Japanese beetles are attracted to geraniums. Supposedly, they eat the blossoms, get dizzy, and fall down, after which you can sweep them up and dispose of them. Japanese Beetles are only in their adult stage for about 6 weeks, but they can sure do a lot of damage in that short time. They eat almost everything, but beans and raspberries are some of their favorites.

THE NEW WEED PILE – Last year, we completed a project that had been planned for some time – a concrete slab was poured to be the bottom of our weed pile. Remember how awful the weed pile used to be? It was always a muddy lake, and it smelled absolutely foul. Now, thanks to the concrete, it is clean and dry, and it doesn’t even smell (very much). Just remember please – dump your weeds inside the rock barriers, not outside or at the corners. The rocks and barriers are intended to contain the pile, so it doesn’t sprawl. There’s lots and lots of space on the concrete – try approaching the pile from the road, rather than from the 300 path.

DRAGONFLIES AND DAMSELFLIES – Dragonflies and damselflies are insects in the Order of Odonata. Dragonflies are generally bigger and showier. The damselflies are smaller, with slimmer bodies, and tend to hold their wings along their bodies when they’re resting, whereas dragonflies stick theirs straight out. Both kinds of insects are beautiful, and they eat smaller insects, such as mosquitoes, aphids, and gnats. Fortunately, we have lots of them in our gardens, including some kinds of bluets, the damselflies with vivid blue on them.  https://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/blogs/how-tell-difference-between-dragonfly-and-damselfly

WHAT TO DO WITH ALL OF THAT DILL – Well, I don’t know what to do with all of your dill, but I have some suggestions to pass on about some of it. In case you’re sorry you ever let dill get going in your plot, this is a link to an article about how healthy it is: https://foodfacts.mercola.com/dill.html  This link  has recipes: https://www.tasteofhome.com/collection/fresh-dill-recipes/view-all/ Of course, if you’ve got cucumbers, the best thing to do with dill is make pickles. You can process them, or you can just make up a jar and keep it in the refrigerator. Pickled beans with dill (dilly beans) are really good, too.


Happy Gardening,

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