6 Things to Do in the Garden ASAP

1) Pinch flowers and suckers off tomatoes and peppers – While I haven’t yet scientifically tested this theory, it seems pretty logical that if you pinch off the first couple sets of flowers the plant will focus more energy on growing roots and foliage.  This will ensure a large, strong plant for a later round of flowers that you will permit to be pollinated by our friends the pollinators (side note:  Did you know that ants are pollinators?). Rather than a lot of energy going into the first couple of fruit, and then having the plant kind of fizzle off because it’s done it’s job.

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2) Inspect for pests and take action – Spot a couple cucumber beetles out there?  Or maybe a little leaf miner evidence?  Better keep a close eye on those guys.  A couple little guys can turn into an army pretty fast.  I’ve noticed a few cucumber beetles in my gardens, but there is something that keeps them at bay.  I’d like to think I’ve created a balanced ecosystem with good and bad bugs (polishes fingers on chest of shirt).

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3) Re-sow – Beans get eaten?  Carrots not sprouting?  Re-plant!  Although, replant with a plan to prevent the same thing from happening again ie. Plant in a new location, put out beer traps for slugs, earwig traps for earwigs, diatomaceous earth etc.  It’s always great to plant seeds before a couple days of forecasted rain.  Almost guaranteed success.

4) Weed, mulch, and water – enough said.

5) Harvest early greens – Do you have beautiful arugula and spinach growing that you admire each day as you water?  Well, don’t wait for that special someone to come for dinner to enjoy it, it’s time now!  If we get a couple of hot days in a row your prized greens might send up a flower shoot (“going to seed”, or “bolting”) and make your delicious leaves turn bitter.  Not what you want on a first date.

6) Harvest Garlic Scapes – Once the flower stalk of the garlic has curled around itself one time, snip that scape at the base and enjoy it as you would delicate garlic – salads, pestos, sauteed, pickled, on sandwiches, burgers, etc!

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7) Prune Your Basil –  a useful video tutorial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLblD5vM_P4 

Did I say 6?  I meant 7.

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