Sunday, August 1, 2010

Squash Tales



This is a picture of my sister-in-Louisiana's garden. The last time I actually saw the space it currently occupies, I was helping my sister mark out the garden with stakes and string and then spraying the spiky weeds that lived there with RoundUp. I am so glad she sent me a picture! It looks a lot like I imagined it, and the plants look great.

My sister has bought most of her seeds at the local "feed & seed" store, but some plants were given to her by a friend who is a Very Long Time Gardener (decades). One plant that he gave my sister to grow was supposed to be a cucumber, but the plant is producing zucchini.

This would normally be fine, except that my sister's husband really does not like zucchini. This particular plant is growing and producing like crazy. When my sister was telling me about it, I was reminded of a cat we used to know. This cat wasn't especially social, but it seemed to know when someone was around who didn't like cats. He would hone in on the cat-disliker and hop into the person's lap and just purr away.

The cat pretty much ignored all the rest of the people, who all liked cats, who might be nearby.

This squash plant is like that cat. It is producing abundantly, copiously, for a family in which the man of the house has to actually leave the house when squash is on the stove, because the aroma of its cooking is so overwhelming for him.

Of course, the zucchini in my yard, longed-for as the plants matured and treasured when the squash were finally produced, have all keeled over (weeks ago!) from the squash vine borers.

However, at the Plant-a-Row-for-the-Hungry garden where I volunteer, one of our gardeners went through the squash patch and carefully sliced open infested stems, pulled out the larvae of the squash vine borers, then covered the wounded stems with dirt. Many of these plants have continued to produce squash for weeks beyond what we would normally expect, so squash-stem surgery is going to be a standard treatment in the upcoming years!

3 comments:

  1. That is a good tip for those pesky squash borers!

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  2. Lovely garden! That is funny about the zucchini, I don't care much for it either and can just imagine if it popped up here LOL!

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  3. Melodie and Erin,

    My sister is really having fun with her garden, so I am glad it is working so well, but it is funny, too! I am lucky to be involved, even remotely, with so many gardens and gardeners. Just like the trick with the squash vine borers, that I had heard about before but doubted as being effective, I learn more every year!

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