Shady patience

A fledgling robin has been perched on the edge of a bench outside my window for what must be at least 3 hours. It scans the skies with mouth agape for an incoming parent. At noontime I think each parent had resorted to stuffing mulberries down its throat. It took many attempts to finally get the chunk shoved into the right location. I wonder what a Heimlich maneuver would look like on a scrawny bird? An adult just arrived on the ground below the bench and in the excitement the youth hopped off its high perch and is now out of view.

With the dearth of rain, I’m sure insects have been difficult to capture for starving youngsters. I’m much obliged to have insects in hiding rather than munching holes in all my masterpieces.

Aster yellows is a major problem this year. You may have noticed bizare dandelions and dill, yellow day lillies, hairy carrots and other assorted yellowing and wild frills added to weeds, flowers or vegetables. There are hundreds of plants that are suseptible to the bacterium and there isn’t anything we can do about it! Yikes! Once the plant has the disease, it might as well be yanked out to help halt the spread. Okay….that means what exactly? All my dandelions, day lillies and on down the list?

We harvest cucumbers and tomatoes daily and should have a healthy share for everyone this week. Depending on your perspective we will have a bunch of some rather large green onions or small new onions since the bed needs to be emptied for a fall cover crop. Spinach is still trying to show its vigor in the intense heat; this may be the last week. Basil improves with weekly trimmings. Parsley continues to look great with constant irrigation. Hopefully the flavor of mint is better than how it looks; we don’t irrigate that spot. Tomorrow, Steve and I head out to the south farm to harvest potatoes and do some weeding and watering. We don’t have a source of water there which makes everything more than a challenge…..especially when thinking about the heat!

Remember that market day is on THURSDAY this week – enjoy the holiday! Also, July is when to start thinking about signing up for fall shares. That might give you a cooling touch -  to ponder frost on the pumpkins and other such matters.