Ecstasy and Agony

| May 12, 2012 | 8 Replies

Ecstasy and Agony – I love going out to the garden in the morning to see what’s happening. Sometimes it’s a good thing, like getting a good look at my first corn tassel shooting up. I planted two Double Standard seedlings March 24.

Or, discovering my first tomato on one of my five seedlings, all different varieties, planted in the ground March 25. See “Rainy Day,” Episode 4 of “Late Bloomer.” I searched for the tag, and couldn’t find it, so I will have to be surprised what kind of tomato this is. I love coming back inside with the smell of tomato plant on my hands.

Next, I decided what we would be having for dinner, purple cabbage slaw in Chinese dressing (if you want the recipe, just ask!). I think this one is ready, at six inches across, don’t you? And it’s nice and firm. I have really babied these two cabbages (you have no idea!!) since I planted the seedlings on February 1. I’ll be covering my purple cabbage saga in an upcoming episode of “Late Bloomer.”

Then, there are the issues for which this late bloomer has no answers. Two zucchini got fat at one end, and are rotten on the other. Yuck. Are these just misfires, or what?

And my once GLORIOUS Lemon Queen Sunflower (this plant had 26 blooms and got as many compliments from neighbors), is sagging, and I don’t know if it’s the natural cycle of sunflowers, or it’s because I trimmed off the very top one (the shaft is hollow, by the way) after it wilted (thinking I would keep it looking nice, haha), and now the whole plant is sad. The sadness started at the top and worked it’s way down.

I just received my “Sunset Western Garden Guide to Edibles” (about time I studied up on what I am doing!), and there’s only one page on sunflowers, and my neighbors seem to disagree on what went wrong, if anything, and what I am to do now. Thoughts? Thanks for reading! – Kaye

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Category: Flowers, Vegetables, Warm Season

Comments (8)

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  1. chriss says:

    Love your photos and your experiences. Thanks for sharing.
    Maybe you might find some useful information for your sunflowers here

    • I just read it, and it doesn’t say anything about what happens to a plant if you trim the top flower. I’ll still be searching for that answer. Thanks for commenting! – Kaye

  2. Is it possible that the shrunken end of the zucchini drooped in a water puddle or up against something hot like a metal shed?

  3. createityourself, it’s such a tangle of stems, blossoms and zucchini under all those leaves, it’s hard to know, but, don’t think there was a puddle and for sure, no metal. Thanks for writing! – Kaye

  4. biggsis says:

    When tomatoes rot at the end it is a sign of a calcium deficiency… maybe this is the same thing? I include eggshells in my cold compost that I apply in my gardens. Don’t know if this would help – but thought I’m mention it just in case! Good luck!

    • biggsis, I’d love to start making my own compost again. I tried for years, and never got it right, tried worms, which went okay for awhile, then they all suddenly died. Do you have a 30/30/30 recipe of vegetable scraps, dry leaves (I don’t have these or ashes all year) and what? Thanks for writing! – Kaye

  5. oceannah says:

    It’s very likely that the zukes were not pollinated well, although that rot on the stem end suggests more than just that, something more like a fungus. You can check in with your local county agricultural extension agency and they will most likely have an answer for you. Many folks think they (Ag extension) are only there for farmers and that is not so! Sunflowers are annuals and the flowers do fade after a bit. The petals fade and fall off but the plant is still sending energy to the seeds in the center of the plant. There’s always a chance that by cutting the flower off you introduced a disease, but probably not. Not sure how long the blooms were on, but enjoy the seed heads as they develop and the birds they will attract 🙂

  6. biggsis says:

    Hi Kaye,
    I confess I never got traditional composting off the ground either, so now what I do is grind up my kitchen scraps with some water in a blender and then add them to a trench in the soil which I then cover up. There is a tutorial on this process at my blog. I hope you find it helpful. It has been such a boon to me – less trash, free compost, and healthy plants! Here is the link to that particular post called “Garbage Smoothie Anyone?”

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