Thursday, July 28, 2011

this is your garden on japanese beetles. minnesota 2011

on our 'black ice' plum tree planted this spring
More accurate is to say 'japanese beetles on your garden'.  I just like the 80's reference.

The infestation has gotten worse since I wrote the last column about japanese beetles.  I've picked off a few hundred in our yard thus far.  At first I tried picking them off, then stepping on them, but some flew away.  So now I crush them a bit between my thumb and forefinger, then step on them. That works.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

growing bananas in minnesota, cannas in the basement

first reddish tomato spotted today- july 24
My apologies for the washed-out quality of the photos. I started taking pictures after 8:30, and the sun is beginning to go down about that time now.  By the time I was done, it was after 9:00.

The sun is headed back south- but we still have a lot of summer left.  The best part of it really- the quiet (except for the cicadas) steamy dog days of August.  The slowly cooling evenings, the transition to early fall.  This is the best time of year.  The heat and humidity of the last few weeks has to end at some point- and today it seemed to be on the way out.  At least for a while.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

the plague of japanese beetles

japanese beetle.  image courtesy of University of Minnesota Extension Service

 I was weeding the garden tonight, cutting down the fava beans which have wilted in the heat.  Favas like cool weather, and thrive in the spring, then tend to get a black fungal disease as the Minnesota summer turns humid and hot.  So I cut them down about this time of year.  The storm last week knocked most of them down anyway, so I was just finishing what Mother Nature started.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

stopping to smell the flowers

i took this photo in june.  my daughter loves flowers.  i love that she loves flowers.
 It's the middle of the gardening season.  The leafy greens have bolted and the tomatoes and peppers and squash aren't ready just yet.  A good time to take a deep breath, kick back, and smell the roses.  Or have a beer.  Maybe both.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

real men use reel mowers

"Real men use reel mowers" is one of the best quotes I've gotten from my current boss.  He's an older landscape architect who's been with the company for over 30 years, but you wouldn't know it by looking at him.  He's quicker (and skinnier) than most of the people half his age that work there.

Monday, July 4, 2011

vacation in wisconsin

me chilling with the kids
hartman creek state park

hiking around the lake

We've been out of town for a week.  I thought I might post from the road, but that just never happened.

That's a good thing.  We all had a chance to relax and not do all the things that normally take up our time.  That includes blogging.