“Our existence on this beautiful but lonely blue planet depends entirely on plants. The air we breathe, the food we eat, fibers for our clothes and many medicines we need derive directly or indirectly from plants. What can possibly be more important than to learn about plants and how to care for them? To learn about nature really means to understand about life and how we need to care for ourselves. Plants are our capital, our life savings and retirement fund at the same time ensuring that we survive as long as the sun may shine.” -Stig Dalstrom
This painting is a vent for me. My vegetable garden is being grown totally organically – no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. And every bug in existence loves this Georgia heat and humidity. Why do I garden? Now I love it and the quote above describes how I feel about the importance of taking care of our planet, but I do need to vent.
Two to three times a day I go to the garden to battle – right now – Mexican bean beetles. How do they know I planted beans? My method is to fill a bucket with about two inches of soapy water and knock the beetles into it where they die. I also mix my own insecticidal soap – using Dr. Bronner’s castile soap and essential oils of citronella and eucalyptus. The insecticidal soap helps with the aphids and stuns the beetles so I can knock them off the plants.
Luckily I don’t have deer or rabbit problems because of our fences. Our property is totally fenced and the garden is fenced.
A few tomato hornworms have showed up as well. They are easy to pick off although not always easy to see. Those pesky worms can devour a tomato plant in a matter of hours. But the garden is thriving – I’ll have tomatoes, squash, and cukes soon. I’ve already made some herb butters – sage, oregano, thyme and summer savory. I don’t love dried herbs. They seem to loose their flavor, so I buy farm fresh butter, chop the herbs (about 2 tablespoons per cube) add some butter to cover and freeze them. Ball makes these great ice tray type silicon freezer starter cubes. Your freeze overnight in their cubes and then transfer to freezer bags.
I posted this photo on my Facebook page, so some of you have already seen it. Here’s the garden this week:
Have a happy 4th – stay safe, have fun and wave a flag! Hope you get to eat some good bbq with family and friends.
“The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place; from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider’s web.” –Pablo Picasso