Here’s a great gardening tidbit that you don’t often see in gardening books. Frozen ice balls falling from the sky for almost an hour are really not a good thing to happen to plants. So you should try to avoid that if you’d like to have a great garden. Unfortunately I was not able to take my own advice and as I’ve mentioned before, a freak June hailstorm in New Jersey left my vegetable garden shredded.
But here it is several weeks later and some plants have started to bounce back. Now don’t get me wrong, I still totally consider this year’s summer garden to be a disaster but all is not lost.
Usually around the 4th of July all my tomato and pepper plants are rocking. They would be full of flowers and really starting to reach for the top of the tomato cages or stakes or whatever I decide to use to keep them upright. This year, I’m just happy to have a few leaves on the plants. I figure the storm set me back about a month.
I knew that my perennial berry plants would be fine for next year but this years blueberries and blackberries are actually looking pretty good. The June bearing strawberries were cut short by a week or two but the plants have recovered nicely. I’m also lucky that the smaller ever bearing strawberry plants that I have on my patio were spared from the ice storm.
And I’m really surprised that my zucchini and squash are growing nicely again and even flowering. I think I may have to grab some blossoms and make a nice omelet sometime soon. After the hailstorm these guys looked like they went through the garbage disposal. They’re really wasn’t much left. But I guess that having healthy roots planted with lots of compost was enough to keep them alive even though there were no leaves left. Good for you zucchini. I vote you as the comeback vegetable of the year.
The new rhubarb plants that I put in this spring are questionable. I was planning on letting them grow some deep healthy roots and not harvest any this season but the hailstorm decided it wanted some rhubarb and broke a bunch of stalks off for me.
Other than that, I’ve got tons of hostas that look like an army of slugs had their way with them. But hostas really are bulletproof. By the end of the month most of the ripped leaves should be replaced with new ones, so no worries there.
And the same goes with all of my hardy banana plants. Oh they look awful right now but given some time and perhaps a few doses of compost tea, new shoots should start outnumbering the tattered confetti like leaves that now have the majority.
So that’s where I am right now in the garden. I also bought a few seedlings to fill in some of the vast expanses of emptiness in the garden that I’m not used to having in July. Things could have been a lot worse so I’m thankful that I’ll still get a chance to enjoy a garden fresh tomato sometime this summer. Hey it might not be until August but I’m not better late than never.