Saturday, June 14, 2008

June 14, 2008

I don't really know what posessed me to look up codling moths and apple trees, but I found a post on GW about it.  It sparked something in my mind.  A few weeks ago I was out in the back yard, probably looking over my potato bins.  Out of the corner of my eye I saw what looked like a dead leaf on my young apple tree.  I pulled it off to get rid of dead stuff and it wasn't dead.  It was in fact, two brown moth's mating.  Needless to say they died happy.  But I didn't think much more about it until today.  I looked up codling moths on Wikipedia and sure enough, they could very well have been what was on my apple tree. 

This picture was taken while I was out looking for any damage.  There were a few eaten leaves that I removed, and I thinned the apple clusters down to the two best looking apples so as not to weigh down the branch too much.  However, I have no idea if there are moth larva burrowing into the center of my apples as I speak.  I'd like that not to happen, but I also don't want to start spraying.  I understand baging the tiny apples helps, but I figure the damage is done so that's not needed (could be wrong).  I think it'd be silly to see huge sandwich baggies ziplocked around the stem of tiny little apples the size of marbles.

Also while I was out there I realized that I hadn't shared my climatis. It's blooming despite my sorry attempt to trellis it.  I should really have been more diligent about that.  It's still pretty with it's huge white flowers...

 While I was outside, I was struggling with a to-do list.  The weather was turning great (currently 68 in the garden), well great for us. And I didn't know what to do.  Then I remembered I wanted to plant out 13 SF of my garden that was still bare.  So I planted 2 SF of carrots now that my second planting is over an inch high and starting to develop real leaves.  I also planted 1 SF of onions so my wife will have 4 SF total.  Finally I planted one more SF of radishes, you can never have enough radishes.

I set to soaking my last 8 bush bean seeds. Unfortunately it won't be enough to fill in the major bare squares, so I'll do my best.  Let me say I will not be doing Jade Bush Beans from Territorial again.  Not sure what I'll do with the 4 SF in front of my bush beans and behind my broccoli.  Maybe more carrots. My son loves carrots and they're like radishes, you can't plant enough of them. 

While I was out there, I kept hearing a chain saw in the distance. I hadn't mentioned it before, but driving home from the park-n-ride for the past week I've been eyeing this tree trunk almost as big as a car in my neighbor's yard.  He's an amature arborist and works for the PUD. He's the guy that helped me cut down my trees.  Well apparently the PUD had a tree they couldn't get rid of and gave it to him.  So the kids and I went for a walk.  Here he is just about done cutting up with the biggest chain saw I've ever seen.

We got to talking and I mentioned that that sawdust was good for composting.  He said I could have it if I wanted it.  So I borrowed his wheelbarrow and took a load back to my compost.

Here's what two loads of saw dust looks like on top of all that grass...

And here it is mixed in and aerated.

So now I've got a great blend of greens and browns, and it's fluffed enough that I shouldn't have a smell for Father's Day, which is tomorrow at my house.

Finally, you should see all the bumble bees on my lavender.  They're covering it!

I love having blooming flowers that bees love on either side of my blueberry bushes. They pass back and forth and stop now and then to polinate the bushes.  How nice of them!  Oh, the "other" flowering plant is my rosemary. It's gone wild from lack of attention on my part. I've never harvested any herbs from it yet, mostly because I don't know what to use them on or how best to harvest it.

Then we headed out for a walk to enjoy the weather and grab dinner (Teriyaki and salad with my radishes thrown in for good measure).  Out we smelled tons of BBQs and it made me drool for tomorrow. Steak, baked potato, home-grown salad, and freshly brewed ice tea... what more can you ask for?  Oh, yeah, apple pie and cheesecake for desert. Yum!

Right after dinner the last garden activity for the day was to plant the last 8 bean seeds after they'd been soaking for a couple of hours. I didn't bother sprouting them because I'm half tempted to transplant the only thriving ones to one or two squares and scrap the rest.  Out of an entire package of seeds I got less than 20 plants to survive.  That's horrible.  Ah well, live and learn.

Enjoy your garden!


  1. I just wanted to say hello and let you know I've really enjoyed following your blog. I can relate to much of what you've experienced this spring especially the cool wet weather we've had here in zone 4. I've been inspired by all the photos enough to start documenting my first square foot gardening experience. Feel free to take a look and offer up any advice. Good luck and keep the photos coming.

  2. If you don't take care of it one way or another, you *will* have coddling moth in virtually every one of your apples. It may not be much of a problem. They leave a tunnel thru your apple and make a mess in the core, but the apple by and large remains quite edible. For storage, however, they're totally ruined. But for fresh eating, cooking and canning, it's tolerable. By the time the apple is ready for picking, the larvae have left.
    Forget about spraying. This insect is devilishly difficult to kill. They emerge over a very long time and once inside your apples they are immune to sprays. I'm using the ziploc bags on my 12 apple trees this year. Pretty cheap and easy all things considered. How it will work out I won't know til the end of the season. But they don't look as silly as you would think, although my neighbor lady laughed that I had put "pants' on all my apples.
    Jade beans may be just one thing you learn not to grow anymore. That's part of the learning process that noone can really teach you but yourself. Some things will work, some won't. Alot of really fun things to grow can't be grown here. Some do really well. Cool season crops are the best bet as I'm sure you know by now.

  3. Here is some rosemary ideas:
    -boil skinned potatoes for 15 minutes then drain, transfer to a baking pan with some oil in the bottom then top with dried rosemary and fire it into a 375 oven until brown and crispy.
    -take fresh rosemary stems dipped in oil and brush meat well grilling

    That is some compost bin you have going. I must say you have inspired me to start looking after my compost better. I have been turning it often as well as every time I put stuff in it and it has started to steam. When I first started to look after it again it had about a foot of vegetable ooze from the winter and it has now turned into soil!