Vegetable Garden in Late June

Jun 28, 2017 | Food

We are finally at the time of year when I can walk into the garden and ask, “What’s for dinner?” Lettuce, peas, broccoli rabe, and heads of broccoli fill the basket along with arugula and other greens. It’s time to harvest and take note of problems as they arise. Here’s what I’m doing in my vegetable garden at this time of year.

Weeding! Yes, the weeds are exploding, but they are easily dealt with using a hoe. Using the hoe on a sunny day is good in that the weeds will lay on the surface and dry up instead of taking root again.

Watch for insects. Earwigs, flea beetles, Colorado potato beetles and cabbage butterflies are around in MA gardens right now, so keep the diatomaceous earth, spinosad and row cover handy. When spraying broccoli and other cole crops with spinosad, be sure to use a little Turbo in the sprayer so that the spinosad sticks onto the foliage. And don’t spray spinosad on plants where bees are actively foraging….wait until they aren’t around or spray very early in the morning before the bees are out.

Dust DE on plants, trying to avoid watering right afterwards.

And speaking of watering, do so deeply but less often.

Soon it will be time to harvest Garlic in the northeast. You’ll know your garlic is ready when the leaves and stalks start turning yellow.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…no, not Christmas, but harvesting season!

Be on the lookout for the white cabbage butterflies. When you see them flitting around your cole crops you’ll know that it’s time to spray with either Bt or spinosad so that the larvae don’t turn your crops to Swiss cheese.

Some people wait for their home-grown broccoli to get as large as a store bought head, only to see it go to flower before it’s eaten. This broccoli head is typical of home-grown. It’s about the size of a baseball. When your broccoli looks like this, cut it.

After that first larger head is cut your plants should make side shoots as you see here. Cut these every other day and enjoy them.

 

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