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Garden Diary: October 2, 2016

Not my sweeet potatoes, but these are the kind I planted

 Oh heavens! Is it October already? I'm flabbergasted! I need to get to work on the October planting post, but right now, I'm too busy trying to get my house ready for my sons to visit me. Of course, like most kids, I have no idea when they are coming. It was going to be the end of this month, then that
changed, and now I'm all up in the air. Not much time for gardening.

Lots of stuff happening in the garden. Some things have started dying back, like my caladiums. I planted the larger ones in a bad place where the leaves fall over onto the sidewalk, so since most of them had gone dormant, I dug them up. The bulbs have grown quite a bit and look very healthy, so I'm thrilled with that. I don't know if I should put them into pots to keep indoors this winter or put them into the ground, so I'm going to do some of each. I now have three different kinds, counting the freebie I got from a vacant apartment. I only have one bulb of that so I'll leave it outside until it goes dormant, then bring the whole pot in for the winter. I'm going to plant a couple small bulbs of the others on the side close to the banana and see if they survive. If so, I may just plant them all over there and leave them for good. I'd like to get a white one this year.

I'm going to try to plant out the rest of the outdoor plants still in pots this month, so I don't have so much in the house this winter. I have some amaryllis, crinum, and of course, the Christmas Cassia.

And As for the Edibles....

Speaking of the banana, it has started dropping all its new blooms. I have 5 hands, which is o.k. considering it never got fertilized by anything but leaves and kitchen scraps. I'm happy that it put out fruit at all! No sign of blue coloring, so stilll have no idea what kind of banana this is. Someone suggested it may be a Namwah, which is another dessert banana. I'll be happy with anything.

I'm looking forward to harvesting the sweet potatoes. There should be a decent amount. I left the ones from last year in the ground, so they should have grown into nice tubers. The picture up top is representative of the kind I planted, but heaven only knows what I will actually get. The slips I planted this year, I'll leave in the ground another year, because they aren't growing very much, and I want them to mature. Besides, I'll need them for ground cover next year.

The greens I planted are pathetic looking, and the seedlings are growing slowly if at all. I'm fertilizing them with 1/4 strength Miracle Gro, and if they ever get large enough to transplant, I'll give them their own pots. The lettuce had gotten too wet from rain, so I put them under the table outside and forgot about them. Most of the regular green lettuce lived, but most of the Black Seeded Simpson died. I have plenty more seeds, so I'm not too worried about it. I'm just trying to keep the ones there alive so I can transplant them into their own pots soon for cutting.

The radishes are a bust. I've planted them twice, and only a few came up. Probably bad seeds. I may have more seeds, I'll have to look. I replanted the onions, but don't have much hope they'll do anything either. These are seeds I just bought this year, so I don't know why they aren't doing what they should. I've never had radishes refuse to grow!

The Seminole Pumpkin vines are doing well. One is blooming, one not, but the second one was planted later and in a shadier spot. A friend says to just forget them and at the end of the season, I will find a few fruits on them, so that's what I'm doing. I do fertilize them weekly, though.

The Chaya is doing very well, both the one in the ground and the ones in pots. I want to dig out the large giant elephant ear this year and replace it with Chaya, since it's edible and gives more shade.

I'm giving up on organic gardening somewhat. I'll still try to build the soil with leaves and compost and whatever, but I'm going back to using fertilizer, because the soil is not good enough to feed these plants yet. I imagine it will take many years to get it rich enough to support plants on its own. I wish every day that I had a car, because there is a place closeby that raises horses, and offers free horse manure all the time on Craigslist. I could really use that right now.

Well, that's enough for now.

Happy Gardening!