Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Its all a learning process...

Well Its been awhile since I have updated this... Its been an interesting May and June.  

We have had plenty of rain... I mean.. rain on rain on rain.  I haven't had to water much of anything.

My outside plants have displayed what I would call a overall large amount of spring sickness, and blasted scapes. 

But beyond that so far my outside season has been good. 

Moving onto the greenhouse!  

Well, I could call my first year a great success, with many teachable moments occurring. 

We are now at the tail-end of pods ripening from our April and may pollination's, and well its a bit overwhelming having pod and seed collection run right into peak bloom outside. 

I estimate that I made about 10-12 thousand seeds from about 200 plants total-  

Things I learned in the process here- 

Dont pick pod difficult plants hoping for a miracle... They will still be hard in a greenhouse.

Tet's are space hogs, but some dips can be also.

New arrivals really do much better with some time in the greenhouse.

Some plants DO NOT LIKE greenhouse culture

So my most important lesson learned...  Pesticide rotation. 

As with almost any greenhouse, once a pest gets in... Its almost impossible to get them out.

In early march I noticed some spider mites, So I sprayed them with Avid... Then In april, I noticed them again... So I sprayed them with Avid... Then in may... And before I knew it, I had a avid resistant spider-mite population. And while researching other ways to control them I learned very quickly that I used poor pesticide management protocol, and I was my own worst enemy. 

By the time I bought a few other pesticides, it was too late the overall spider-mite population was too large to "control" and the foliage was too thick to effectively spray anyways (spider-mites live and lay eggs on the underside of plant leaves.) 

So what do you do here?  Well you hit the reset button. I had to one by one remove all the foliage from each plant, and then I will follow up with a rotation of 5 different pesticides to eradicate any leftovers. 

So why not organic control?  

Well it was a bit too late for that, and well all the effective control methods wont take an out of control population and bring it down.  I will in the future consider buying a few "spider mite destroyers"  But their availability and cost are hit and miss with 50 of the bugs costing 65-100 dollars, and requiring overnight shipping.  And these would need to be purchased every 4-6 weeks, and still need a spider-mite population to thrive. 

There is now essentially only a few "new" plants blooming in there now, other then that.. I will start gearing up for planting seedlings in about 4 weeks! 

Some pictures from this season! 

 "Strawberry Milkyway"
 "Boss hogg"
 "Diamond shores"
 "Boss hogg"
 "Flower wolf"
 "Wacky Wednesday"
 "Clown pants"

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