And when the participants in the Family Gardening Program at the Moreau Community Garden arrived, things got even busier.
On today’s agenda:
• learning about a new garden pest
• harvesting beans, peppers, zucchini, cherry tomatoes and basil
• monitoring our experiment with powdery mildew remedies
You may remember that last week we sprayed a milk mixture or a baking soda mixture on different plants infected with powdery mildew. Our goal was to see which of these home remedies worked the best.
Today, the gardeners walked back and forth between the two test beds and made an evaluation. While both remedies seemed to have an impact, the baking soda sprayed plants looked better this week, meaning they had less powdery mildew. We repeated the experiment and sprayed again with both mixtures and will report our results next week.
Last season’s gardeners warned me that tomato hornworms were a problem in the garden in 2012. And just this week, gardeners are reporting finding them again.
Today, about 15 gardeners learned what tomato hornworms look like, how to spot them on a plant and what to do if you do find one.
A few of the adult gardeners were surprised at how large these pests are. The four we found ranged in size from about four to six inches. They have good camouflage, but you can find them on a plant by looking for an area missing its leaves. And, then look on nearby branches. They are voracious eaters and can strip the leaves off an entire branch overnight.
What do you do if you find one? If it is parasitized with wasp eggs, just move it off your plant. Otherwise, remove them off the plant and place them in the trash.
At the community center, adults have been preparing the vegetables as a snack for the young gardeners. This week they made zucchini bread. One of the counselors told me that the bread was a huge hit and one youngster said he never heard of the vegetable before but loved the “ZOO ZOO bread.” I love that he tried it.
They may make some more because we sent many, many fistfuls of zucchini, peppers, beans, cherry tomatoes and herbs to the center today.