Rain, Weeds, Dahlias

From the extreme heat and dry spells to the torrential rains we’ve been having lately, it’s been an interesting summer in the garden.

I took a walk yesterday afternoon to check the rain gauge.  We got over an inch and a half of water, and it was still raining!  We’ve had many showers over the past couple of weeks, which has been great; especially since I pretty much gave up on watering because of how our season is turning out this year.  It’s really a good thing we didn’t start marketing this year since we have been spending most of our time trying to get the yurt projects under control.  And they will be ongoing for several months to come, so we don’t anticipate selling anything until next year.  But we’re glad we were able to start growing this year, because we have been able to experiment a little.

With all the rain we’ve been having lately of course the weeds are growing like crazy.  The morning glories are especially prolific right now.  While they are definitely a nuisance, they are a pretty one.  Here they are on the cherry tomatoes, which are starting to bloom again now that the extreme heat has somewhat subsided.

And here they are strangling the eggplant, which are making a comeback from their defoliation by the blister beetles.

And here they are climbing up the Padron peppers.

They’ve even made an appearance in the dahlias.

Speaking of which, are doing well right now… despite the fact that most of them are sprawling on the ground since I didn’t stake them (lesson learned).  This is High Plains Majesty.

Here is Mr. Ralph.

This is Seduction.

Here is Gabrielle Marie.

And Hy Clown.


And Hollyhill Bridget.

While the dahlias are quite breathtaking as they are, I think that for commercial production you would need to do some spraying to keep the bugs off.  Not sure with what, maybe a homemade garlic concoction?  I wouldn’t be interested if it took some nasty chemical though.  We have had very few blooms that made it to a salable state without having some kind of insect damage.  I also haven’t had much success keeping them looking good for long once they are cut.  I’m sure there are some tricks I haven’t learned yet; in the meantime I’ll be digging the tubers in the fall and hope they’ll survive the winter so I can try my hand at propagating them in the late winter/early spring.  There is always next year.