Sunday, September 27, 2015

A Hoosier Tradition

If you're ever in the Fort Wayne area of Indiana on a weekend near the 26th of September, you might want to check out the  Johnny Appleseed Festival, named after one of the most unique characters and successful orchardists ever produced in the U.S. You can check out some fast facts about this legendary gentleman here.

Friday, September 25, 2015

First Time Is Sometimes The Charm

I'm in my third season of trying to grow Pepino Melons and things are not looking good; plenty of blossoms, but no melons. However, my Alpine Strawberries are a different story. The blooms finally started appearing a few weeks ago and the fruit is now ripening. I was afraid there would be nothing before the first hard frost, but it looks like my worries were unfounded. You can bet I'm looking forward to tasting these little gems which I am growing for the first time this year.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The Equinox Is Upon Us

“Equinox” comes from the Latin words “equi” meaning “equal” and “nox” meaning “night.” This implies equal amounts of daylight and darkness, however this is not exactly the case. On September 23, 2015, the sun will rise at 6:56 a.m. EDT on the equinox and will set at 7:04 p.m., so there will be 8 minutes of day over night. Although the sun is perfectly over the equator, we mark sunrises and sunsets at the first and last minute the tip of the disk appears. And because of atmosphere refraction, light is bent which makes it appear as though the sun is rising or setting earlier.

By the way, this year, equal day and night won’t occur until September 26 with sunrise as 6:59 a.m. EDT and sunset at 6:59 p.m.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Deja Grew

Three seasons ago there was a contamination scare that involved melons. It made me very glad that I was growing my own melons that year. Now I am experiencing the double whammy of a salmonella scare involving cilantro and cucumbers sending shock waves through the produce sections of American food stores.

Fortunately the FDA is right on top of this and has isolated the source of the contamination in each case. And even more fortunately, I can get all the cilantro and lemon cukes I want from my garden.

Food safety isn't the main reason I like to garden, but it is a really great side benefit.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Tomato Grower's Lament

When nightshade fruits come out to play.
They ripen in the sun all day.
They may come in the summer.
They may come in the fall.
But it's a real bummer.
When they don't come at all.