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Celebrate the culture of agriculture & share skills (Growing! Cooking! Eating!)

First it was fertilizer burn death for about 3/4 of my seedlings, then it was a flooded out plot, then it was scorchingly arid weather followed by constant tornado watches and warnings... It hasn't been a good year for gardening here in SE Michigan, atleast not in my yard!!!

But, the good news is it can always be rectified. First, some vinegar to kill off the massive amounts of weeds that have accumulated thanks to bird seed we put out in the feeders. Wait 2 weeks, add manure and other compost, then cover for the winter. I am hoping between killing off the weeds (with natural elements of course!) and adding a ton of compost, we will have better result next year. I also believe some sand is needed to allow for a little better drainage even though it is a 6" deep raised bed that was tilled deeply beneath it.

So far all I have gotten are a handful of beans, although I do have a few green cherry tomatoes hanging on the plant and several flowers on the one whole cuke vine that survived. I happened to have planted my peas a little late (first year for those) but I do have some coming out on the few vines I have.

All that said, it's a HUGE harvest out at my Dad's farm this year. Tomato plants hung heavy, plenty of squash and melons and tons of peppers! For the whole month of June he really wasn't even tending them much and still this result! I need to get ahold of some of that magic soil! Even the wild berries in the woods provided some pies! Even though we are in the same state, the weather is a little milder out where he's at. Also, the trees and brush we planted as part of the CREP program (state directed initiative turning unused farm fields back into wooded areas) are doing well.

Dad finally got internet today, maybe I can get him to get on here and share his wisdom. He was my teacher, I think he did a pretty good job- even though my stuff died, I know why! LOL

Views: 13

Comment by Larry Snyder on August 5, 2010 at 4:22pm
Join the crowd. My garden was full of failures also. Beans,tomatoes,& cucumbers all pretty much failures. Last year these crops did well. I'm still learning the do's & don'ts of high desert gardening. Squash which normally is dying back by now got its second wind & has the neighbors hiding from me.
Comment by Wendy Hammond on August 5, 2010 at 4:36pm
I'm in SouthWest Michigan - the biggest failures I've had were my beets & carrots, which were eaten by rabbits as soon as they sprouted. Then I put a fence up and my peas did OK and my tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers are slowly coming along. My cantalope plant was doing great but then a rabbit somehow got in and chewed it off at the stem. It was a very sad day.
Comment by Alicia Peckham on August 5, 2010 at 7:37pm
Sounds a lot like my West Michigan garden. Looks like no canning for me and so far I've only frozen an extra 10 oz of green beans. We did get a good amount of strawberries, some peas, a bunch of really small red onions and our Chives are doing great. It looks like I'll have plenty of pole beans to dry and my accidental tomato plant (came from a stray seed in my compost bin, from a grocery store tomato) will almost have more tomatoes than my other 11 heirloom plants combined. I too have to rethink, make corrections and have hope for a better return next year.
Comment by Cornelia on August 6, 2010 at 9:59am
Carrie, you're not alone. Check out the responses on the HG Facebook page! http://www.facebook.com/homegrowndotorg
Comment by Carrie Seal-Stahl on August 8, 2010 at 9:56pm
Hehe Thanks Cornelia! I won't give up, I always try again the next year :)

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