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rainbowgardener
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Playing defense

It is starting to seem like at this time of the year, gardening is a lot about defending your crops! (Plus a LOT of watering!)

The Japanese beetles and the green June beetles seem to be done for the season, thankfully. I still haven't figured out what totally destroyed my kale plants, but I think now that there is only swiss chard in that bed, it may be moving into the swiss chard, which had been untouched.

There's a hornworm eating my cherry tomato plant which I cannot find.

My acorn squash fell to the SVB's.

Surprisingly, I am not seeing much squash bugs, but even though I don't see them, it is possible they account for all the older leaves dying off my winter squash plants.

In the non-insect realm, the new dog we acquired loves to dig up my gardens, as well as to pick tomatoes and peppers and carry them around like toys. She especially loves to dig in nice soft, loose dirt. That tends to mean places where I have just planted stuff. So she keeps digging up the seeds, seed potatoes, etc that I just planted. I am slowing her down by piling loose sticks over everything I plant, but it makes the garden look strange.

I planted some yellow crookneck squash by my chain link fence. They have sprouted and put out true leaves and are doing nicely, but now some of the little stems are being chewed off. Oh yeah, that's the side of the yard that the bunny comes in to. The bunny is why the quarter circle squash bed got fenced in. Since those vines got huge, the bunny hasn't been bothering them or the squashes they have produced. I guess it just likes tender new seedlings. So now I will have to figure out a way to protect those AND the scarlet runner beans I just planted today, also along the chain link fence.

I feel like I should just sit out there and guard my plants!
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

imafan26
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Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Playing defense

I haven't had it that bad with pests as the garden patrol keeps ahead of the beetles and I think the lizards are also eating caterpillars since I find holes but not a lot of caterpillars. Usually, I don't have this much of an issue with caterpillars but I think my new butterfly bush may be the problem. I may have to get rid of that or move it away from the vegetable garden. I did find 2 dead rats a stray cat killed in my yard in June and my cat is a good roach catcher. I haven't had a mouse in the house since 2003 even though they have been in the yard. In June I had a lot of problems with broad mites and I ended up destroying a lot of plants because it was futile to do anything else. The rain is actually helping with that now.

I have more issues with disease. Bacterial spots on peppers so I have had to destroy or cut back plants. The tomatoes are pretty resistant so there were no fungal or bacterial issues, but they are mostly finished and I have to start new ones. I have sooty mold on the citrus but I cannot see anything like aphids on the tree. As usual the snails are having a party eating the seedlings and the rain makes it worse. They usually are less of a problem in summer. The rain has been causing my upo squash to get brown specks on the fruit and mildew on the leaves. I probably won't get as much fruit as usual. So far I have harvested about a dozen fruit and at least 7 fruit rotted from the rain on the vine. I did treat the roses, gardenia and hibiscus with rose care so that took care of the aphids on the gardenia, erineum hibiscus mites and kept the roses free of blackspot in all this humid and wet weather.

Beetles are not really a problem between the lizards and the cattle egrets they do a good job of keeping them down. I rarely even find a grasshopper. The other birds seem more interested in eating papaya off the trees and eating my seeds out of the trays.

For the most part I have let nature take its course, I have only sprayed the ornamentals and I have culled the sick vegetables. The garden patrol has been keeping the rest in check and I can't really do much against wet humid weather but to wait it out.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

ButterflyLady29
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Location: central Ohio

Re: Playing defense

I feel your pain. I lost my whole peach and apple crop to squirrels. The birds got most of the berries. Something nipped off my lone ginseng plant at the base. The chipmunks have been busy digging up everything. My cucumbers got dug up when they were almost a foot tall. Groundhogs are eating my coneflowers. And I found 3 huge monstrous tomato worms on one tomato plant, it looked like the deer made a meal out of it! And what the critters haven't got, the drought and heat are finishing off. Watering is nearing a daily necessity, even for crops in the ground. I've probably lost my Jerusalem artichokes, mostly because I didn't get a chance to weed and mulch early this year like I've done other years. And my 2 remaining Nanking cherry bushes are toast.

And then there's a "new to me" little black stinky beetle that is eating my zinnia and turtlehead flowers.

On a positive note, I've had to rip out all the plantings in my front yard and found several nearly dead strawberry plants. They are now in huge containers and much happier.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Playing defense

Yup "something" just totally ate one of my pepper plants. Left the main stems and the fruit and ate every single leaf, practically over night.

Usually nothing bothers pepper plants for me. ....
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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digitS'
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Re: Playing defense

The word origin is about enclosing for the purpose of watching over and guarding ~ a garden.

What other guarantees do we have of the produce?

We must provide for our provisions ... or, go without.

Steve ;)
We are each other's harvest; we are each other's business; we are each other's magnitude and bond. ~ Gwendolyn Brooks

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Playing defense

Oh very nice! I had some how never put it together that the root gard is the basis of garden and guard!

Yes the new squash and bean plants along the chain link fence now have their own little bunny fence to protect them (picture later). Eventually I want to fence in the whole area of my raised beds to defend them from the dog and other creatures, but that would need to be a square 20' on each side, which is a lot of fencing, lot of time and $ to make it happen. And I don't want it too ugly.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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