Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Urban Gardener Weekend Update: Watering system beats the heat; where are the cukes?

We spent this fourth of July weekend enjoying a different kind of garden, the CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)  cooperative in New Paltz, where we were visiting friends. What a great way to get fresh produce while letting someone else do the digging and weeding. The CSA was distributing Swiss chard, zucchini, beets, radishes, purple onions and a few other farm fresh veggies, Our hosts prepared truly gourmet meals every night creatively using all the green ingredients. I'll be posting more on that later in the week.

Meanwhile, with the temperatures nearing 100 degrees in Manhattan, our wondrous watering system allowed us the flexibility to garden in absentia. We purchased parts from The Drip Store  on the advice of our neighbor and fellow gardener Jan. My husband Mitch assembled the system two years ago. After our terrace renovation, we had to replace a few parts, and we added PVC tubing to cover the length of our terrace using elbow joints to go around the corners.

We've set the timer to go off twice a day, at 6:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. for five minutes each time.
We adjust the drip system to provide less water to the lettuce seedlings
Watering the basil requires a more robust flow
The Cherokee Purple and other tomato plants require the most water in our garden.

















While we tried to keep cool in Lake Minewaska, the plants really thrived in the heat. The eggplants exploded with ripe fruit that is ready for harvest.  The tomato plants must've grown several inches taller and we have plenty of green tomatoes growing fast. One concern: our cucumbers are flowering, but so far, no fruit. As the cukes are a new vegetable for us, I don't know if they're slow to fruit or just not getting the right stuff. If anyone knows about growing cukes, please leave a post on the site with your advice!

3 comments:

Charlottex said...

Long time lurker, first time poster!
About the cukes. Mine have been really slow this year to take off as well. I think the heart and water has slowed down the flowering process. Keep them watered in the morning (pre-sun obviously)to beat the daily drought. Mine are flowering and starting to do little cukes. Oh. the varieties I am working with are Japanese climbers and the regular small picklers.

Charlottex said...

Long time lurker, first time poster!
About the cukes. Mine have been really slow this year to take off as well. I think the heart and water has slowed down the flowering process. Keep them watered in the morning (pre-sun obviously)to beat the daily drought. Mine are flowering and starting to do little cukes. Oh. the varieties I am working with are Japanese climbers and the regular small picklers.

Orora said...

Also, be sure that there are enough bees to pollinate your cukes. They have male and female flowers and the bees carry the pollen from male to female to make the fruits. I'm trying to pollinate some of mine by hand to see if that helps.