Lessons I learned about my garden in 2023

Lisa K
Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

Lessons I learned about my garden in 2023

That an insect really like my Italian and Greek Oregano but the Hot & Spicy Oregano not so much!

My Daffodils which were here when I moved, have been able to survive being covered up with other plants and gophers.

The storms that blew through in 2023 all had high winds associated with them which meant that both my mini-greenhouse and my dad’s got bounced around during every storm.

My Evening Primrose is very good at re-seeding itself.

The creatures in my backyard really like the French Dandelions but not the wild ones in the front yard probably because they look very bitter and tough.

Did you have any insights or lessons learned?

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Comments

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Sounds like I need to try some hot and spicy oregano! Would be good if there was hot and spicy basil too. 😂

    I learned that the trees are too expensive to cut down right now that are giving way too much shade to one of my big garden beds. They have grown a lot since I put that bed in. We asked about trimming a few limbs as well but seems none of the companies will trim over 20 feet which doesn't help. So, I'm making a new bed (maybe 2) in a very sunny spot in the spring for squash and cucumbers.

    I learned peppers are perennial. So, I'm trying to over winter them.

    I've also learned that my pea plants don't mind the frost. I really thought they would die in it, but the tops just get a little wilted and then come back as the day warms up. Of course, we haven't had a hard frost yet. I've got blossoms but no peas though.

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,980 ✭✭✭✭✭

    That I am not immune to tomato hornworms just because I never saw any before 2023.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @kbmbillups1 ooohhh, hot and spicy Basil would be great!

    @VermontCathy I hope in 2024 the tomato hornworms find tomatoes elsewhere!

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @VermontCathy Last year I had so many tomato hornworms! Luckily, I found them when they were small. The year before I didn't have any on my tomatoes, but I did find them on my lantana. I'm hoping this year they enjoy munching my lantana again!

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @VermontCathy and @kbmbillups1 isn't weird that every year or so a different pest shows up, at least that is true in my garden.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,102 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I learned that we have way more slugs and in a wet cloudy summer they are not hiding during the day. We had thousands. They were even in the greenhouse climbing the walls to get to where the leaves reached and they really liked my sweet peppers, cucumbers and loved the cabbage.

    This year we are trying the copper tape and see if that really does keep them off my plants.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym it sounds kind of like a horror movie with thousands of slugs, ewwww.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,102 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Lisa K It was kind of like one sometimes. Every time I went to pick a cucumber or head of lettuce they were covered with slugs. When I submerged the lettuce in water before bringing inside there would always be slugs in the bottom of the water. Had to tear every leaf off the head while rinsing to make sure there were no more hidden down in the tight core.

    Really hoping the copper tape works to keep them out. I couldn't even do the beer for anything outside of the greenhouse. It rained so much I would have owned stock in the company buying so much to replace what the rain watered down too much to use.

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,980 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym Too bad you don't have ducks! Ducks love slugs, and you would have had fat, happy ducks cranking out eggs left and right.

    I think many of these pests have a useful predator that thrives on them and keeps them under control. Sometimes it isn't practical to have that predator around, but sometimes you can.

    I haven't found anything that eats Japanese beetles. Oh, well.

    @kbmbillups1 @Lisa K Of course, I never grew 75+ tomato plants before, and we never had that level of rain and flooding before in the 10 years I've lived here. Both of those were probably factors in bringing the hornworms in.

    In 2024, I will looking for those hornworms like a hawk, making sure I get them all before there is any possibility of forming a chryalis or cocoon, or much damage to plants. At least they are large enough to see, unlike thrips, aphids, and so forth.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym I what you mean by a method not working due to rain, that is where I am with the rats, every time I put out the baking soda it rains just enough to dissolve it.

    @VermontCathy sounds like you have a plan, good luck!

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @VermontCathy I think it was 4 years ago I was outside late at night with a black light looking for hornworms. I found various sizes that way.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @kbmbillups1 your nightly adventures reminded me of my dad who would go out night or very early morning looking for snails and slugs.

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Lisa K I know my neighbors thought I was crazy! They never asked what I was doing though. 🤣

    My youngest daughter was still with us then and outside with me. Hopefully, she'll be reminded of our adventures later in life as well.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @kbmbillups1 haha I love it! She will, I know this because I too would sometimes go with my dad! Most of our neighbors thought we were crazy except one neighbor that loved Escargot and we would give them our snails 😁

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,980 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @kbmbillups1 I didn't know you could find hornworms with a black light. Interesting!

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @VermontCathy You don't ever have to buy one. There are instructions online that tell you how to use clear tape and black and purple (I think) markers that you use to color the tape and then cover the flashlight on your phone.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,624 admin

    @kbmbillups1 I was intrigued about the black light hack so I looked it up. Pretty cool!

    Here is a link for anyone else interested.


  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Torey That's it! It really does work. The hornworms and other caterpillars' glow so they're easy to see.

  • SuperC
    SuperC Posts: 945 ✭✭✭✭

    @Lisa K one time a neighbor let me plant oregano in his garden. When he went to dig it up to share some with his sister, its root system had become a nest for ground hornets.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,915 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @SuperC that is scary. I wonder if that is why GreenStalk says to fill the pockets all the way to the top, hmmm.