Saturday, May 2, 2015

What's Happening in the Garden This Week

What is in the garden so far this year:
  • Jersey Knight asparagus planted last spring as 1 yr old crowns (now 2 years old).  Harvested lightly this year.
  • Overwintered spinach and lettuce
  • Kale, cabbage, mixed greens, lettuce, arugula, raab (March/April transplantings)
  • Shallots (Conservor and Zebrune transplanted end of April)
  • Onions (Cortland, Red Marble, Redwing, Red of Tropea transplanted end of April)
  • Tomatoes (Juliet for drying and canning and a few for salads and sandwiches: Pruden's Purple, Cosmonaut Volkov, Green Zebra, Sungold transplanted early at the end of April)
  • Sweet Peppers: Lively Italian Orange, Stocky Red Roaster, Ace (transplanted end of April)
  • Hot Peppers: Aji Cristal, Aji Colorado, Criolla Sella, Chile de Arbol, Red Habanero, Padron, Hinklehatz, Ring of Fire Cayenne for dried chile flakes, Golden Cayenne, and Matchbox. (transplanted end of April)
  • German Extra Hardy garlic planted last fall
  • Potatoes (German Butterball planted end of April)
I don't want to spend much (any?) money on soil amendments, extra compost or mulch for the garden this year, and I'm experimenting with whatever organic matter we have on hand, so I am ready for some failures.  I planted the peppers and tomatoes into a deep wood chip bed over winter rye that wasn't really dead and still exuding growth inhibitors I'm sure.  Whoa.  And the potatoes I am trying growing on mulch - I just piled some leaves, coffee bean chaff and hay I had and poked the potatoes in. 

garden with mixed hedgerow planting on the right
Zestar! apple blossoms
broody hen all fluffed up and pissed because I pulled her out of the nest
I know what I need to do with this broody hen but I haven't made time to set up the crate yet.  I plan to on Tuesday though.

In the world of bees...I like to wait "for the dandelions to bloom" before I reverse the boxes on my hives to give the bees more room in the spring but I did that early this year because they seemed ahead of schedule.  I like to wait "for the drones to fly" to make spring splits, and I saw a single drone flying around on Tuesday with night temps in the 40s for a few nights and then in the 50s, so I went ahead and split.  I have been successful using this technique to help give the bees more room and prevent losing any in a swarm, although I have also had my fair share of swarms!  The idea is you take some brood, honey and pollen and move them into a new hive. As long as there are eggs, the bees can raise a new queen.   

There are a million ways to split, but what works for me is to keep it simple and kind of divide everything in half.  I know the hive on the left is a bit stronger, and may try to rob the hive on the right of their honey, so I plan to switch the position of the two in a few days, so some foragers will likely enter the wrong hive and beef up the population of that weaker hive.  

I split my beehive on Tuesday into 2 hives

1 comment:

  1. My favorite picture is broody hen -- she really does look pissed off! All the life and lush new happenings shared from your garden and your good work gives me hope!