Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Vegetables, re-animated?

My Monsters?

Well, my cucumbers and squash are basically spent at this point, but taking a tip from our chef at the winery I decided to add some organic fertilizer into my raised beds yesterday, in order to see if I could kick-start my crops back to life for a few more weeks of "re-animation" production. (I watched "Young Frankenstein" on TV last night, and so basically today I feel like Gene Wilder playing scientist to Peter Boyle's monster, which in this case is my cucurbits. They're alive I tell you!  Alive!)

I'm not sure how I feel about this; on the one hand, a vegetable has a natural lifespan wherein it produces abundantly for awhile, then tapers off until there are no more blossoms to be fertilized and plants to be grown.  But if I can, through a natural fertilizer, push a little more fruition out of my plants, then I'm all for it. After all, it's only August and I'm not quite willing to let go of those fresh summer veggies just yet.  

In some ways, this is the hardest time of year -- we're at the clear end of summer, but here in the west the heat will be with us for at least another two months and the leaves won't turn in abundance until early December.  But everything has been moved up here because of our early spring; we will have grape harvest in the vineyards earlier than ever before, and some vines are already turning brown, defying the usual December leaf-change date.

It seems like most of the plants in this region have already given their best, produced their crop, and are now readying themselves to settle down for a nice period of dormancy.  If only we could all do the same.  But as long as we're in a protracted end of summer, at least I want some summer veggies, so I'm hoping Chef's fertilizer tip does the trick and gets my veggies started again.

After all, what's summer without zukes and cukes?

And at this rate, it's looking likely that I may have some tomatoes by Christmastime.

Still extremely green. Hoping for some Christmas red.


  1. How have the cukes responded? Fresh tomatoes at Christmas sounds amazing! I've been enjoying tomato sandwiches at just about every meal. So good! Wish I had them all year!

  2. The zukes have definitely responded! the cukes, not so much. Oh well, 50 percent improvement isn't bad I guess.