Thursday, May 29, 2014

Quick and Dirty

On Saturday I spent a good chunk of time in the garden, pretending I actually care about my poor plants. 
Forgot to take a before picture, but the weeds between planter boxes were intense, and the gophers relocated a lot of dirt from under the planter boxes to beside them (I guess our new pet snake is slacking...).

We have noticed that every season, as we prepare to plant a new crop of veggies and herbs the dirt level in the boxes is dramatically lower than it was when the previous plants went in. This usually leads to a trip to Home Depot or the local garden center to purchase compost/Amend to boost the nutrients in the soil and bring the overall dirt level back up. However, this is an expensive way to deal with the problem, so I decided it is once and for all time to deal with the gopher problem (they relocate the dirt under the boxes, which causes the dirt in the box to fall through the hardware cloth lining the boxes which causes the dirt level to decline. As a result we are in need to gopher eliminating advice. I refuse to use poison because I fear hawks will eat a poisoned gopher, so what non poison solutions should we try? I am getting desperate :(

On the positive side, this Bougainvillea is so pretty in the far end of the yard.

We also pulled all the carrots and chard (which, sadly, tasted terrible due to hot weather), and discovered we have an aphid problem of epic proportions. This is another issue we have battled for the past three years. We bought "organic" aphid spray which just killed the plants. I bought ladybugs, they all died. I sprayed the leaves of the chard off a few times a week, nothing changed. What gives? How do you keep aphids off plants without resorting to the nasty chemicals? Help? Anyone?

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