Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Garden in August

The battle is on to keep the plants alive until September and cooler weather. We are heading toward a new record for the number of 100 degrees or more days. Great! On top of that a drought has lowered our water supply to a very low level although not as low as when I was a child. With the water level dropping, new more stringent watering rules are going into effect.

As of August 24, 2009, we can only water once a week and not during the heat of the day. The police will be handing out tickets, no warnings. The tickets will be at least $400.00. I can't help but think that a cash-strapped city has discovered a new revenue source. Other cities and towns are only now going to mandatory conservation and twice a week watering.

Unless the weather changes and rain comes, I don't think I will have a fall garden. The problem is that I need to be planting now for the fall and it is too hot and too dry.

I lost my last artichoke and my lavender. The tomatoes are still alive but producing smaller fruit. The cherry tomatoes are now pea-sized. The yellow pear tomato is not producing at all. It looks to be on its last legs suffering from heat and disease. Even the native black nightshade is having problems. This plant has grown at the edge of the garden since spring. The white wing doves love its fruit so I have let it grow. Something is eating the leaves. The plant was already weakened by the heat, so it has a very straggly appearance.

My okra continues to flourish with pods harvested every day. The first eggplant has been picked and eaten. With the dearth of insects including bees, I am now pollinating the eggplant by hand using a paint brush.

The weather forecast is for another week of heat and dryness. We may break the all time record for days in three digits. Oh well, I am going swimming with my cousin.

Photo by faul

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