Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Horrible Wind

The wind is just horrible. The humidity is around 35 percent. The wind feels like the sort you would expect to blow up a storm, but it hasn't and won't according to NOAA. Couple with this wind we went from the temperatures being so cold that leaving plantlings out overnight to harden off has been a trial as it has gotten below 30 degrees a couple nights in a row less than a week ago.

Now we have had two days here of 91 and 88 degrees. Spring has missed us completely. Moderation is not for us. Strawberries are in bloom and I do not have to look hard to find those blossoms with black eyes showing that it froze while they were in bloom. My 'Honeycrisp' apple went from not a single petal fallen, to completely denuded of petals in less than a day and yet that day and yesterday (and today as well) will have wind speeds of 30 mph with gusts as high as 50 mph-- much too windy to attempt my spraying with Malathion to prevent codling moth. This spraying was supposed to occur at 75 percent petal drop.

Gardening in central Wisconsin can be a trial.

I planted my luscious melons, cutting slits in black weed barrier. Half of these I also covered with the white fabric floating row covers. Did I mention we have had cold nights? I thought this might be a good things to give those peat potted transplants a bit of an extra boost. They went into compost-lined holes well watered. Yesterday, however, with the additional heat captured from the double blast of temperatures dinging the 90 marks and the winds being so extreme as to literally whip the row cover like wash on a line repeatedly across the melons, I have to say the unprotected plants looked better.

The fabric is supposedly water permeable, and it is, but it is more like a a filter. This effect allows spot watering to pool and run away from a plant.

I am not sure this possible innovation is all it is reputed to be. Now if it had gotten cold or we has a storm blow up with hail, I would probably be singing a different tune. I have left the white fabric row cover in place. If my melons bear more fruit because of the heat trapped under this cover, even with the indifferent start it might be worth it.

In other developments, the potager is allowing a large salad everyday. The 'French Breakfast' radishes are coming on and are deliciously mild. The best two radishes I have tried I think are 'Chery Belle' and that one.

In the family garden, most of the bare root berry plants have developed multiple leaves. The blueberries are developing very fast. There are many, tiny, thin asparagus showing in every hill in the asparagus bed.

The first of the cucumbers have popped up, parsnips are up, and the next sweet corn 'Country Gentleman' planted from two-year old seed have sprouted. I personally, thought that night be a fail. I know my dad will mix in the leftover seed from his field corn the next year, but I don't know if he knew for sure it actually sprouted. I know seed from the cucumber/melon family has good multiple year germination, as does radish seed; but some seed, like tomato and peppers, not so much.

The problem though, is with the winds, the top couple inches of soil is drying out pretty fast. I have yet to plant any of my beans, and have planted not all my carrots. With the drying winds, I did not feel it a particularly auspicious day to put out transplants. I did see a commercial farmer transplanting out peppers yesterday. Good luck to him!


  1. Gosh Rachelle- the weather your side sounds terrible, I would probably have given up already, you must be a true gardener!

  2. It does sometimes get to me, but the long-term successes like I posted in today's blog (6/5/2011) do help me persevere.