Our 3.5 lb Armenian Cucumber

This Armenian cucumber weighed over 3.5 lb:

It grew in the greenhouse and since it cooled off after Labor Day we’ve been getting more of these beauties. They are not cucumbers, but melons and they do NOT get bitter. During the August heat our cucumbers were not edible, but the Armenian cucumber were great, although we didn’t get many.
They make a seedless salad because it’s so easy to get rid of the seeds. Half the cucumbers and remove the seeds with a spoon: Continue reading “Our 3.5 lb Armenian Cucumber”

We're under gopher attack

It took them FIVE years to find me! I had gophers at my old place and my little 4′ x 8′ garden plots were completely hardware cloth lined and fenced. I didn’t think I’d get gophers here because the soil is so rocky, but here they are.
And once

they arrived about a month ago they destroyed our gardens as if they hadn’t had a good meal in 5 years. We lost almost all melon and cucumber plants in both gardens.
As soon as we discovered them we ordered a trap online. When they buried the trap and we caught nothing, we got gas. I didn’t like it and it didn’t work. We put the gas stuff in the holes leading out of the garden and it did nothing.
And finally today we caught the first gopher in the trap:

I didn’t realize until I took the picture that it was still alive and Jose then shot it. We definitely have the wrong trap!
Here is the trap we bought on Ebay: Cinch Regular Gopher Trap
So we looked at a Pest Guide and ended up ordering a couple of Gophinators. They’re a lot smaller and hopefully kill them quickly.
Several people also suggested getting one of those vibrating spikes or windmills because gophers don’t like the vibration. I tried one of those spikes at my old place and it did nothing. I think they work in areas where there’s plenty of food and they’ll move to a more quiet area with just as much food. We are surrounded by desert and probably have the best gopher food within a mile.
I hate to have to kill any animal, but I can’t imagine having to gopher proof all our garden areas and every tree we planted. In spring we did some yard cleanup at my old place and one of the trees I had planted at least 8 years earlier had “fallen over”. I had NO roots, the gophers had killed it.
Fortunately they haven’t found the greenhouse yet. We’ve been getting great Armenian cucumbers and the tomatoes are doing great too, have to post some pictures next.

Hot summer days and gardening update

We've been lucky this year and enjoyed a relatively mild summer until August. The heat in the last few weeks was tough on veggies and until it got hot, established veggies got watered only every second day. Only transplants got watered daily for a week or two.
We had several Armenian cucumbers and we've been getting lots of tomatoes, mostly cherry, but some are up to 2″ in diameter.

8/31/11: tomatoes, Chinese white eggplant, most likely bitter yellow cucumber and Armenian cucumber

We decided to make a salad instead of a big dinner:

8/31/11: salad with homemade bread, olive oil and hibiscus / spearmint tea

Continue reading “Hot summer days and gardening update”

Farmers' Almanac September planting schedule

I missed a few days, been so busy. From Gardening by the Moon Calendar from the Farmers' Almanac

September 2011
4th-6th Clear Fencerows, Woodlots And Fields, But Do No Planting.
7th-8th Any Aboveground Crops That Can Be Planted Now Will Do Well.
9th-11th Poor Planting Days. Kill Plant Pests.
12th-13th Good Days For Planting Root Crops. Fine For Vine Crops. Good Days For Transplanting.
14th-15th Seeds Planted Now Will Grow Poorly And Yield Little.
16th-17th Good Days For Planting Root Crops. Good Days For Transplanting.
18th-19th Seeds Planted Now Tend To Rot In The Ground.
20th-22nd Fine Planting Days For Fall Potatoes, Turnips, Onions, Carrots, Beets, And Other Root Crops. Also Plant Seedbeds And Flower Gardens. Good Days For Transplanting.
23rd-26th A Most Barren Period, Best For Killing Plant Pests Or Doing Chores Around The Farm.
27th-28th Good Days For Planting Peas, Beans, Tomatoes, Peppers And Other Aboveground Crops, In Southern Florida, Texas, And California. Excellent For Sowing Grains, Hay, And Forage Crops. Plant Flowers.
29th-30th Excellent Time For Planting Aboveground Crops That Can Be Planted Now, Including Leafy Vegetables, Which Will Do Well. Start Seedbeds.

It's drizzling and only 71 in our greenhouse! Unbelievable after the heat of the last couple of weeks. I finally feel like planting winter veggies.