Sunday, September 19, 2010

Kansas City, Mo Adventures and More

Orchids grow on the palm trees in the Kauffman Memorial Gardens.
The great produce at City Market, Kansas City MO
How about these for the grill?
Black Eyed Peas - Real southern food.
Fresh ginger - something new in a farm stall for me.
Boy! were these beautiful.
Roasted peppers - they looked real good and smelled great.
One of the three aisles of farm produce.
Part of the Kauffman Legacy Park.
Blues are so hard to get good pictures of.
Butterflies on the milkweed - this shot took some waiting.
This is the official garden cat sunning in the greenhouse with palms and orchids.
The University of Missouri Extension service is located in this complex.

Ash flower gall mites are quite cosmopolitan and these trees have the galls bad.
These apples will be harvested and stay in the bags for the best storage.
Nice apple in a footie but as you see the bag is starting to tear and so it is not usable again.
These are part of the row of "All Red" potatoes and a few "Inca Gold".
Chipmunk damage to my melon.
I just cant say enough about the success of these "Earth Box" planters.
The biggest banana tree I have ever grown.

We went for a visit with our son in Kansas City, Missouri recently. We got to see more of the city than in our last visit as this time we were able to visit City Market with all the growers in for the Saturday sales. We saw great garden products - got some seedless watermelon, some fresh ginger, and best of all wonderful fresh figs. This is a great market with three double rows for the local growers and various markets of ethnic origin on the perimeter. The Italian deli was tempting and the spices for sale at the Middle Eastern market gave off wonderful smells. We got some Iranian watermelon seeds for a snack and some great tea. This week's pictures will show the market, our visit to the Kauffman Memorial Gardens in downtown KC and some of the harvest that we are doing here in Wisconsin. Should you like another perspective of Kansas City try my son's blog at:
While in KC I got to make a call on the University of Missouri Extension and speak at length with Marlin Bates, Horticulture Specialist about the tomato grafting programs that have been offered by Missouri Extension.UM Extension is very fortunate to have specialists on staff who are knowledgeable about Asian high tunnel growing and vegetable grafting. The information Marlin shared with me about grafting programs that they have presented to regional growers gave me good insight as to the specialized focus of this type of vegetable production. Marlin and I also talked about Viburnum borers and Ash flower Gall mites. A very big "Thank you" to him for sharing his time.
Just a brief note abut the Kauffman Gardens. Although they are a small garden, and notably the final resting sight of the Kauffman's themselves, this garden is a gem - well maintained, colorful even this late in the season, and well identified. The gardens are an oasis of peace in a busy city scene.

Back here in Wisconsin, fall is upon us. The apple harvest is going nicely. I pick a few ripe fruits each day. The bagging results on the footies are not good. I do not see them as protecting the apples as effectively as the plastic bags. They have allowed some coddling moths into fruit and they will not be usable for a second season as they seem to deteriorate in one season - I would guess its UV deterioration. Plus they are not as readily available as plastic, are a bit more time consuming to apply, and I have some signs of apple scab on footie fruits that I do not have with plastic bags. I really don't know for sure why. So as a result I don't think I will be searching for a good deal on 'footies' this spring.
Potatoes are still green and growing but I have dug some anyway. The "French Fingerlings" we had the other night oven roasted were nice. Today we are having some Inca Gold and All Red quickly cooked in the microwave. We are not big potato eaters much anymore but having fresh spuds from the garden is hard to resist.
The melons are a real bust. Most of the vines were hit hard by fast-moving powdery mildew and then cool weather brought growth to a halt. Also I have rodent damage on some fruit as the pictures show. If I get the new hoop house built this fall maybe we can use that structure in the summer for melons and see if that helps hurry them along.
The fig tree is giving us one or two ripe figs each day and the peppers growing in the "Earth Boxes" are an amazing success. I think I will get another one of these planters and put all of next years pepper plants in these and none in the garden. Finally, the banana tree is just huge! Take a look at the pictures of this great plant with the yard stick to help you get some idea of just how happy this plant has been this year - too bad frost will make short work of it soon. We will hope for such a happy plant next year.
Happy Gardening

One of the many fountains in KC, MO. ( PS if you go back to the Canada fishing entry; I just got that wilderness waterfalls to post too....)

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Tomato Blight for me too

Ripe figs from our tree are a treat.
Probably the worst tomato patch I have ever had.
We had NO beans this season - good thing I did not plant all my seeds.
These red dandelion flowers look exactly like blue chicory flowers.
You can see that the ones in the lower right are really blue.

After my return from the Canadian fishing trip the tomato patch looked pretty sad. What looked like a late blight had hit the plants hard and it took some time to clean up the plants. I removed all dead leaves and any green leaves that looked really infected and any old or damaged fruits. They look pretty poor but we are still picking fruits and maybe we will still have tomatoes for a few weeks to come. I sure will miss them when they are gone.

Most of the melons are still green. The Minnesota midgets were over ripe when I got home and so no taste test there. The vines growing on the trellis seem to be less infected with powdery mildew than the plants on the ground. With our cool weather for the last few days ripening will be slow. I sure hope we get some soon. However, Stinky - our Chicago Brown Turkey fig - is producing several rip fruits each day. What a treat to come home from Canada to ripe figs. As the weather gets cooler the fig tree will retreat back to the greenhouse and then later into the house as we do not heat the greenhouse except for one month in the seed starting season.

My son and I spent most of the day painting the inside of the house so tomorrow I want to start some fall lettuce and get some radishes planted in a cold frame plus get some more clean up in the garden done. We are going to take down the old hoop house and hopefully put up a new one this fall. Initially I was going to try one made of metal poles but I think I am going to try one made of plastic tubing mainly as a cost factor. half inch to one inch PVC honed in the middle and anchored to the ground with plastic stretched over the top and some sort of permanent ends seems to be the plan. I will again search the web for some plans I know I saw once before.

The Italian red dandelions have some flowers on them and they look exactly like chicory flowers - blue petaled. I was expecting a yellow composite but that's not what one plant that is blooming has so I need to go back to the seed package or the catalog and see if their is a scientific name to check the genus and species.
Happy Gardening