Middle of the Gardening Year

Lake Macbride

Lake Macbride

July 25 has been the traditional day to plant second crops in the garden. Turnips, radishes, green beans, broccoli and more stand at the ready. If I can break away from paid work for a while they’ll go in Tuesday or Wednesday.

Wildflowers

Wildflowers

I planted lettuce in pots, but it germinated poorly—likely due to too hot temperatures. The broccoli seedlings are ready to be planted, but there is a fatalistic cloud hanging over them as some critter got under the fence and ate up the cruciferous vegetable in the spring. My tolerance policy may enable it to return and bring its friends once the tender crops are in the ground again.

Reflections of Clouds

Reflections of Clouds

A neighbor has been out of town for a couple of weeks and offered their garden produce while gone. Their squash, tomatoes and cucumbers filled a gap in our garden, and I made notes for next season. Two zucchini plants is more than enough for a family, plant cucumbers earlier, grow a couple of early yielding tomato plants to supplement the later big crop.

Queen Anne's Lace

Queen Anne’s Lace

Mostly though this time of year is about wild flowers. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has some prairie restoration projects going and each patch is redolent with the scent of summer.

It’s time to stop and take it in before midsummer turns to fall and winter.

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