May 12, 2012 - Sometimes We Fail

Pretty, aren't they?  I put that yardstick in there so you can see that these turnips are now 18" high.  

I'm pulling them all out today.  It's too bad we don't like to eat turnip greens, because these are all tops and no root.  That's two years in a row for turnip failures.  Evidently my soil is too rich in nitrogen for them, but I don't have any problems with the other root crops.  The only good thing about it is....we don't like turnips, anyway!

All but one of my cantaloupe seedlings died.  Snipped off by something unknown.  It could have been cutworms, but the snipping was a bit high on the stem.  Possibly birds.  Whatever it was, they're gone.  Seeds have now been planted in place.

Every one of my Diva cucumbers died of what looks to be  damping off.  I only have one seed left, which has been planted, in hopes of getting at least one Diva plant growing.

Why did I prune my raspberries so low last fall?  They are blossoming now, but I doubt I get a very good crop from them this year.  I should have known better!  I'll blame it on a "senior moment".

Sometimes we I fail.

46 comments:

  1. awww, that's not a failure. It's all in the name of try to grow. its like the saying by Thomas Edison: 'I didn't fail. I just found 1000 ways how not to make a lightbulb.' the greens themselves are lovely!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jenny, you always see the bright side of things! Thank you :-)

      Delete
  2. So sorry about that. As exciting as gardening can be--there are those moments of disappointment. My Diva cucumbers are just sprouting, but we will see how they do. My peas are what I am keeping an eye on. Not sure if I will get any actual peas. They were doing great and the leaves have started to yellow from the bottom up. Again we shall see what happens.
    Lisa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lisa, I usually show the "best" of the garden, and blog about the "good" stuff. Sometimes I just need to show people that all is not perfect in Granny's garden :-)

      Delete
    2. Yep and have a happy mother's day :)

      Delete
  3. Ar least it's not just me. Only one of my cucumbers has grown. I need to replant them.

    Does someone else in your family like turnips? If not, why plant them? Maybe you could find a good recipe for the tops.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Langela, LOL! Nobody in my family likes turnips (I was going to force myself to eat them). Why did I grow them? Because I had free seeds, silly! ;-)

      Delete
  4. Jenny I love your Thomas Edison quote.
    Lisa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was going to say that too. Great quote by Edison, have never heard that.

      Delete
  5. Some of my tomatoes got cut off. I thought it was cut worm and it ended up being roly polys. They also ate my new bean sprouts last year. How in the world do you protect new seedlings from roly polys. Ugh.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Peggi, I have been finding a lot of them in my beds, as well as millipedes, which are in the same family and will also eat tiny seedlings. I blame them on the rotting roots from the old maple tree. The new garden area is just full of them. I've actually reached the point of being able to squish a roly poly between ungloved fingers, and not bat an eye.

      Delete
  6. Oh, you're wailing and gnashing your teeth now, but I bet anything you end up with a good crop of raspberries. I still don't know where you live, so they'll be safe.

    So sorry about the melons. Will you have enough time to start from seed again?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know, Sue. I cut them all off because some crazy woman was trying to steal them from me! Oh....was that you? ;-)

      I think there should be plenty of time to start them from seed. I have about 150 more days of frost free weather ahead.

      Delete
  7. Hey I haven't even planted my melons or cukes yet. Nor my beans. I've been watching the soil temps. It has been too cool. I'm pretending to be patient.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Daphne, my other cukes are growing fine, it was only the Divas, the ones I was looking most forward to, that died. I had started them in that cheap potting mix....my bad.

      Delete
  8. I'll bet you're spot on about the nitrogen. I had peppers in one bed last year that got way tall, but never bloomed. I finally figured out I had been growing greens there before and adding compost and blood meal, and the nitrogen was likely building up in the soil. I don't know what you can do about it, either. So you're not the only one with uh-ohs!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dave, that bed was heavily amended with cow poo and organic 10-10-10 last year, and used to grow broccoli. I may have even tossed a few alfalfa pellets in there. I know it's too high in nitrogen....the warmest, sunniest spot in the garden, no good for lettuce, I have no idea what to plant there now. It's just a small spot at the end of a raised bed, but I hate to see a plantable place go to waste!

      Delete
    2. Green manures? Giveaway crops? Popcorn? I don't know. I'm learning to see the open space as a rest for the soil, hence the green manures. . . I can't fit the next round of crops in if I plant it all, since the summer crops won't clear before November, and the fall crops have to go out in August, more or less. . . it's a puzzle. How do you deal with that year-round stuff? Containers?

      Delete
    3. Stefaneener, it's a big decision, to be sure. It's such a large space....all of 1' x 4', LOL!

      Delete
    4. I bet celery would love it there, or maybe corn, sunshine and high nitrogen would be like mana from heaven. ;)

      Delete
    5. Anywhere, I already have 12 celery plants in the bed right across from it, which is way too much celery! The corn is already planted, and it's too small an area for that anyway (1' deep by 4' long). I was going to plant carrots, but ran into a huge tree root about 6" down, too large to remove. I'm thinking I'll just wait a bit and plant some broccoli or cabbages there for fall. Or maybe another cantaloupe, since I discovered the whiskey barrel is staying bone dry and not a good spot for them.

      Delete
  9. Sorry about your greens, we love turnip greens. I guess no more of those in your future, huh? Ha. Nice job on everything else.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 1st. Man, I guess I know where I can send those turnip seeds! :-)

      Delete
  10. I'm sorry to be hear about your Divs's. I know that you were looking forward to them. I think that peas are going to be a bust for me this year. I had horrible germination and the Blizzards that were growing well looks as of all the growth points have been burned. The onlt peas doing good are the 9 Garden Sweet that I started indoors and tranplanted!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ed, my peas look great, but my sweet peas look awful, and I doubt I'll get any blossoms from them. Odd, as they are planted in the same general area as the sugar snaps. I'm still hoping that one last Diva seed germinates for me. It's planted in "the good stuff"!

      Delete
  11. Hi Annie, I am a discouraged gardener tonight too! My tomato plant leaves looked terrible with these tan spots so I cut a lot of them off and sprayed with some Fung-onil I had. Maybe wasn't suppose to do this. Might have to buy new plants. But then I was encouraged by seeing one potato plant poking through. Never give up, right!!! Nancy at Cozy Thyme Cottage

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nancy, did you harden off your plants before you set them out? It sounds as though they might be sun or wind burned.

      Delete
  12. how about some squash in that spot? or swiss chard/kale? hmmm
    I was wondering what that TALL stuff was!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amy T., not enough space for squash (cantaloupe vines will be taking over the extra room...if they ever germinate) and I already planted way more than we'll ever use, we don't like kale, chard suffers from leaf miner damage, making it inedible. I already have too many peppers and tomatoes. Green beans are growing everywhere. Too late for more radishes. I'll probably put three cabbages or broccoli plants there later, for fall use.

      Delete
  13. Mine were like 2 feet tall and nothing underneath, and were supposed to be 35 day variety LOL... I left them and about 10 days later I was accosted with turnips all of a sudden! I couldn't eat the greens though even if I liked them, they were all bug hole-y! My first year for turnips so I had no idea what to expect, but I'm definitely not planting them with my lettuces and scallions next time, they were huge and overshadowed them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh great, Erin, now you tell me LOL! They are already in the compost bin. With all the wire worms I found in that bed when I pulled them, I doubt they would have been edible anyway.

      Delete
  14. I understand about the turnips. I try to grow peppers each year. 9-12 plants a year! I fail every year. I hate peppers. This year I planted 13. !?!?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ribbit, good luck with your peppers this year. Maybe 13 is your lucky number :-)

      Delete
    2. I have the same problem with peppers.

      Delete
  15. Unfortunately that is part of gardening! I am sure that almost all of us have had some sort of gardening failure in the past, don't be so hard on yourself. This is how become better gardeners in the future! Happy Gardening! Mindy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mindy, I've been gardening for over fifty years....believe me, we never learn! We know we shouldn't plant too early, but every year we take a chance that "this" will be the year to plant early. We know one zucchini plant will feed the entire neighborhood, but we still plant four zucchini plants. I'm not hard on myself at all (except for the raspberry mess). There are failures every year, but luckily there are even more successes.

      Delete
  16. “I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.”
    ― Thomas A. Edison

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kris, make that 100,000 and I'll agree ;-)

      Delete
  17. Replies
    1. Lucky seven, I don't think so. I've never seen evidence of mice around here. I think it was sow bugs (pill bugs, roly poly bugs). They, along with earwigs and wire worms, are my worst garden pests. Even the squirrels don't do much damage, just a bit of digging. Knock on wood!

      Delete
  18. Great post! So much public sharing (blogs, facebook etc) is all, "Look at how excellent everything is!" We want inspiration, yes, but a little affirmation in the form of, "Look at all the stuff that didn't work!" is very refreshing and encouraging. I have been gardening seriously for about 10 years now, and I still feel like such a beginner. Every year, I have several crops that "fail." I'm learning that it's not because I am a horrible gardener. It's because that's how gardening goes. I try to learn from the mistakes, when I can identify them, and focus on my successes. I'm sure you're the same.
    Anyhoo, wireworms are my biggest opponent, too. I've read that they're more common in organic gardens, where the soil has a high level of organic matter (manure, etc). So I'm letting my compost age an extra year this year, to give them less to eat? I have no idea if this will work, but I'll try anything. I was amending my soil with a lot of young-ish compost, and I also dug in a bunch of seaweed and straw mulch one fall a couple years ago, just to let it decompose right in the soil over the winter. I think this is when the problem started. From now on, I'm going with aged compost only. We'll see if it helps. I'll try to remember to keep you posted...
    Happy Mother's Day!
    Kirsten

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kirsten, those wire worms are the curse of the devil! I've always had them at this place, and I've been gardening here for 22 years. I don't think there's any way to get rid of them, short of poisoning your soil, and I'm not doing that!

      Yes, we fail. And we succeed. Today's success might be next year's failure. This year's failure might be next year's success. Sometimes it's beyond our control, and sometimes I just do something really stupid......like pruning my raspberry canes down to 2'. I'll be kicking myself all year for that one!

      Do keep me posted, and I'm glad you came here and commented! Happy Mother's Day to you, too :-)

      Delete
  19. Well I guess it's a good thing you don't like turnips! I hope you have success with your last cucumber seed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Vanessa, yes it is a good thing! I hope the last Diva seed germinates, but if not, I have three Spacemaster cucumbers that are growing well. That's more than enough for Mr. Granny, and I hadn't planned on making pickles or relish this year. I just really wanted to see how well Diva, an all female, produced.

      Delete
  20. Not sure why but I always seem to fail at root crops, my carrots get an inch tall and stay that way without the roots growing all summer, my onions are ALL green onions with no bulbs, same with radishes too. I have never had luck with root veggies. This year I'm looking forward to correcting this problem though and having real carrots and onions.

    only 9,995 more tries to get the turnips right, right? lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anywhere, I think I have 9,998 more tries. Don't cut me short, I may need every one of them ;-)

      Delete