Monday, May 5, 2008

My First Meal and Spiders (guess which I liked more)

Good news. The timer worked. So of course it is beautifully sunny today and I turned it off and took the plants outside. I’m a little worried about them. They haven’t seen real sun in three days and the eggplant has never seen the sun. I’m hoping they don’t get sunburned, but frankly I’m too lazy to worry about them much. I opened one end of the hoop tunnel so they wouldn’t get too hot, but the other end is still closed. They should be nice and cushy while they sunbathe.

The rest of the boc choi is bolting. I harvested all the plants. While pulling up one plant I noticed another wireworm munching on one of the roots of the cabbage. I’m wondering if that is my trouble growing these. I don’t think of wire worms as cabbage pests, but they must be. A search on the web revealed the most common way to get rid of them organically. You trap them using one of their favorite roots; either carrots or potatoes. Since I have no potatoes and I do have some old carrots in my fridge, carrots it is. I sunk three of them in the garden a couple of feet apart. I’ll wait a few days and pull them up and see if I caught any. Supposedly they are only a pest in cool soil. When the soil heats up, they work their way down to a cooler area. So in the summer I should be fine, except of course that the cabbage family likes it cool also.

The boc choi buds taste nothing like broccoli, but a lot like boc choi. You could have guessed that right? The boc choi was just a little bitter as one would imagine for a bolting choi, but not too bad; nothing like bolting lettuce which is inedible. I made it into a Thai dish with tofu, using another harvest from my garden - chives. I added a little more honey than usual to counteract the slight bitterness and it was quite yummy. My first garden meal.

One species of (I think) Jumping Spider was out in force today. It was dark grey with very hairy legs, one large white spot on its back, two smaller white spots just behind the larger one, and ½ inch long. Spiders freak me out. When they are inside they really give me the heebie jeebies. I’m not usually a shrinking violet, but something about spiders…. Outside in the garden I don’t mind them as much, but I usually try to avoid them. On rare occasion they hold a bizarre fascination to me. Today I saw two of them from the far side of the garden. They were fighting or mating. It is hard to tell with a spider. So I went over to get a closer look. I couldn’t help but to continue to watch as they played out their little drama. I wish I had a camera with me. Later on the other side of the fence I was folding up a row cover (my little lettuces don’t really need it anymore) and noticed one of the same kind of spiders just sitting happy as you please on MY row cover. ACK! He wouldn’t get off. I had to push him with a (very long) stick to convince him it was my row cover. As I came in I was checking my skirt to make sure I hadn’t picked up any hitchhikers, since those weren’t the only three I saw in the garden. It was hopping with them today. My garden was party central to a bunch of horny spiders. I think I’ll let them have their fun for the rest of the day without me.

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