Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Pumpkin Patch

Lily and her friend, Violet got to visit the pumpkin patch a few weekends ago. Too cute! They both loved the tiny pumpkins and the HUGE ones. We all should have worn boots, because, duh! It's a farm and there's mud and stuff, but we had a ball anyway, and we got there before the crowds and rain so it was perfect.
In addition to the pumpkins, the girls got to pet a goat and see some pigs and peacocks. Plus there were huge horse troughs full of water for washing off your pumpkin that Lily and Violet seemed to like most of all. Isn't it always that way with little ones; they'd much rather play in the cold, dirty water than pick the perfect pumpkin.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Garden Clean Up

Lily and I finally spent some time cleaning up the garden beds this weekend. Actually I did the clean up while she sat and explored the dried cilantro plant full of seeds. I thought she would enjoy pulling out old plants and tossing them into the compost pit, but the fun for her came in picking the coriander seeds and trying to eat them. I was amazed at how much scent the plant still gave off as she picked the seeds and played with them. I felt like I was eating fresh pico de gallo.

She was very helpful in putting down cardboard over the beds. We just tiled our kitchen back-splash and had about 30 square foot pieces of cardboard left over. Instead of recycling them I decided to cover the beds with them before I toss the fall leaves over to help compost into the soil. Every one I placed down, Lily picked up and moved to a new spot, her spot. I began with a pile, placed them all over three of the beds and by the time she was finished, we had a nice pile of them again. She likes making piles these days.

And now I'm going to stop writing because my computer is making a sound like a cat dying a cruel death and I'm worried it's just going to stop working; it's on it's very last, last leg, or life, if we're talking cat lives.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

We're Back

Well, we're back from a beautiful, sunny, relaxing vacation in Florida, but I'm not really sure to what extent we're back to garden. Normally I love the fall clean-up in the garden, but I'm not ready to face it just yet.

Last week before we left, Lily and I picked all the winter squash, 4 acorn and 2 delicata, to be exact. The plants were thriving, as squash plants like to do. And then it seemed like overnight the powdery mildew swept in and devoured the leaves. I noticed it was happening all around the neighborhood too, suddenly lush, green plants looked like they'd been snowed on, or more appropriately, ashed on.

I've never been able to control it or stop it once it starts and I know it's common, but it sure doesn't fail to annoy me. I saw a photo of a pumpkin farmer in his acres of maturing pumpkin plants and they were all green, not one spot of powdery mildew in sight, and it got me wondering, do pumpkin farmers use pesticides? I know that might sound like a naive question, but I guess I just never thought about pumpkins and pesticides.

Greg and I also made fruit leather from our plums which we both like and Lily definitely does NOT like. She does like the winter squash, though so that's a plus. I can't wait to make some squash bread, YUM! YUM!