The funny thing about gardening is that once you figure it out in one place there is NO guarantee you will be successful (at first) in a different place.
Some of the tomatoes are being eaten by something – not cutworms, but something I have yet to identify. There are bugs and worms that I have never seen before! So far no aphids like the ones that drove me crazy in Prescott last year. Instead we have Assassin bugs (good), beetles (bad) and and other very strange insects like wasp moths. The insect identification book is getting heavy use.
The soil here is amazing; river bottom mud. Really sad to not be using it this year. Until we have it tested it is unwise to plant food. Katrina left a lot of chemicals in the ground, so until you have your own soil tested you can’t know if you have any contaminates like lead or mercury. And if there are contaminates we need to know what they are! For this year we have contented ourselves with grow beds.
The one thing we have planted in the ground was milkweed. Someone told Meggan it would attract Monarchs. She bought some and planted it. No Monarchs! We started to think that milkweed and Monarchs were an urban legend. And then. . .the Monarch’s appeared. We have quite a collection that fly around all day. They put on a real show! The Monarchs have been joined by Black Swallow Tail and a couple of other ones I can’t identify.
Here is a picture of the milkweed and a Monarch – just look for the circle; I know it’s hard to see but you will get the idea. They are so beautiful!
Meg and I went to the nursery over the weekend and invested in $70 worth of butterfly and hummingbird attracting plants to create a “butterfly garden.” They are all planted neatly along the front fence.
So far – no butterflies and no hummingbirds. Either another urban legend or a lesson in patience. . . we’ll see.