We were away last week and returned to a baked yard and garden. We have eked out a vegetable patch in our back yard that has slowly grown each year. The sun had wilted the green peppers but the sweet corn was rising up out of the rest of the garden, a good 3 to 4 feet tall. The potatoes had gone in early this year and are now finished flowering and have covered their portion of the garden so well that no weeds are growing up around them. They are our mainstay, since they store so well in our cold basement and can be used as seed potatoes in the spring.
The sawfly larvae attacked our roses again, both the wild and the floribunda / hybrids. The telltale sign was small black dots and what looked like a spider web around a rose bud. I deadheaded all of those and ended up with only about a half dozen of the little green worms. Two years ago they nearly destroyed our two large wild rose bushes but this year they made hardly a dent, and we have new cane rising out of the bushes that are about 6 feet tall.
The berries have come along well this year. As a rule, I avoid anything that is either not a perennial or not edible. In addition to the vegetable patch in the back, we have a kitchen garden out front. Once your cilantro and lavender start flowering and the dill pops up, it looks as interesting as any other flower bed. We also have blueberries (new this year), and harvested our first batch of black currants. The raspberries are still the mainstay and, if the two footed locusts in our family do not get to them first, I will be able to sock away 4 or 5 pounds in the freezer. We hold on to them, like Charlie Bucket with his annual chocolate bar, until deep in the coldest part of winter and then break them out for dessert.
The peppers have recovered a bit although I doused them with water from one of the rain barrels to make sure they were all right. The ones I planted early were fine, but I had just put in two extra (sale items!) and they had not settled in yet. I lost two Jack in the Pulpits as well, although my Mayapple and other Ontario wild flowers seem to have bounced back. It enabled me to empty the barrel, which was having spigot problems anyway, and I will give it a good wash out and replace its mesh.