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2011-05-08 7:44 PM

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Elite
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Subject: The BT Garden thread - 2011

Are we ready?

I have some potatoes, onions, kale and spinach in, and I am going to do a drip system (rather than soaker hoses) this year.    I put the potatoes in a box that will go vertical.

http://www.re-nest.com/re-nest/gardening/how-to-grow-100-pounds-of-potatoes-in-4-square-feet-081760

What are you doing differently this year?



2011-05-08 8:31 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
Has anyone had any success with container gardening? I'm a renter so I can't dig a proper plot for planting. I've toyed with the idea of getting a couple containers and having a go at it on my "patio" (read: concrete postage stamp poured outside of my kitchen door). I'm only one person so I'd like to keep it simple with the following stuff I eat regularly

-Probably one or two tomato plants (Roma? They're the ones I use most in cooking)
-Basil (because everything is better with basil)
-Green pepper (one? more?)
-Chilis (jalapenos)

I live in a really really dry climate, and it gets HOT here in summer, which is a huge change from where I've lived before (temperate, wetter, northern). I also don't know what to do with this red soil, or if I'm going to need potting soil or....
2011-05-08 9:26 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

phoenixazul - 2011-05-08 9:31 PM Has anyone had any success with container gardening? I'm a renter so I can't dig a proper plot for planting. I've toyed with the idea of getting a couple containers and having a go at it on my "patio" (read: concrete postage stamp poured outside of my kitchen door). I'm only one person so I'd like to keep it simple with the following stuff I eat regularly -Probably one or two tomato plants (Roma? They're the ones I use most in cooking) -Basil (because everything is better with basil) -Green pepper (one? more?) -Chilis (jalapenos) I live in a really really dry climate, and it gets HOT here in summer, which is a huge change from where I've lived before (temperate, wetter, northern). I also don't know what to do with this red soil, or if I'm going to need potting soil or....

Basil loves HOT.  You should be able to grow all of these things in pots if your concrete postage stamp gets a lot of direct sunlight.  Buy seedlings.  I have much more success with seedlings than growing from seed.  I usually only grow herbs in pots (vegies in the garden).  Last year, I had a nice big pot with basil, cilantro and parsley.  They all grew fantastically well in my pot.  I just filled the pot with potting mix.  I didn't use soil from the ground.  Today I planted basil, rosemary, parsley and lemon balm in my pots (and a petunia).  I put lavender and tomatoes in the ground.  I already have lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach and carrots growing in the ground.  I have a large number of herbs growing from seed.  I don't usually grow from seed.  I put lettuce seeds directly in the ground (the spinach seeds to) and the lettuce in particular is growing well.  I plan to add to my herb pots over the next few weeks.  I am going to try chamomile this year and cannot wait.  I have lots of tiny sprouts in my sunroom and am hoping to get enough plants to be able to dry enough to last me through the winter (for tea).

2011-05-08 10:33 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

x2 on the seedlings. Basil tends to be a bit hard to start and easily succombs to 'damping off' some fungus that kills it dead for me every time. 

I just ordered a book on natural dyeing with suggestions for plants to grow. This year my garden is mostly going in the dyepot. Still, can't skip the tomatoes and yet again I will try carrots, parsnips and replace whatever herbs kicked off over the winter. I was very sad to find that it was my rosemary this year.   My corgi liked to sleep underneath it and would come in the house smelling of rosemary. Nice! Must replace soon!

2011-05-09 8:30 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
I have down-sized my garden significantly, but I think it's much cooler than the truck-patch I used to try to keep. I'm down to 16x25 from 42x180

Here's part of the split rail fence I buitl last year. It's entirely made of black locust wich is difficult to split, but will last for decades.



Here's the garden gate (also black locust)



Here's the plants all set. Tomatoes (20 plants) Brandywines, Cherokee Purples, and one I forget the name of, but it will produce green-ish when ripe fruit, Bell Peppers (4), Anaheim green chilis (4), Cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash, butternut squash, basil, cilantro, 2 kinds of parsley, rosemary, thyme, Swiss chard, and marigolds. I already have a strong stand of sage, mint, and oregano.





Here's the dry-laid fieldstone patio I also built last year. It's 12x18 and contains about 150 stones that weigh up to 250 pounds. It overlooks the garden. I built the stone wall a couple of years ago. The only power equipment used was my pick-up truck to move the stones out of the woods.

2011-05-09 8:34 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
bootygirl - 2011-05-08 7:44 PM

Are we ready?

I have some potatoes, onions, kale and spinach in, and I am going to do a drip system (rather than soaker hoses) this year.    I put the potatoes in a box that will go vertical.

http://www.re-nest.com/re-nest/gardening/how-to-grow-100-pounds-of-potatoes-in-4-square-feet-081760

What are you doing differently this year?



Good luck with that method. It has never worked for me.


2011-05-09 9:09 AM
in reply to: #3488335

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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

While I CAN get Romas to grow in pots, they never seem to thrive like the ones in the grouns. Best tomatoe in a pot I've done is the sugar sweet, which is a little orange one. But...romas will work. Just make sure they don't get over wet.

Basil grows easily in pots. I usually have a few pots of it here and there. I like to mix my varieties. Lettuce leaf basil is the more common one...and I find it gets whiteflies more than any of the others. Sage grows well in pots, too--and it's perennial, so you can keep it alive forever (unlike basil). I grow cilantro in several pots, as well. One of them just re-seeds every year, and comes up on its own, actually.

Bell peppers are hard to grow in pots, IMO. Hard to grow in the ground, at least up here. If I get a single or two peppers to a plant it's a big year. Personally, not worth it for me.

Hot peppers... I usually do 15-20+ hot peppers a year, most in pots, a few in the ground. I have one pot of jalapenos that is about 5 years old (4 plants in the pot). I've struggled the most with anaheims--they always rot, for some reason. Jalapenos are probably the easiest and most versatile, but cayennes are also pretty easy. To the point where I have way more than I need. But...they dry easily, so that's not an issue. Last year, I had probably 10 r more varieties of hot peppers.

One thing that really grew well for me in pots (just as well, if not better than in the ground) was a dwarf eggplant (ichibans).

I have also had success with butternut squash in a pot--but it takes a lot of space, and the squashes stay sort of small.

You can do a "salsa garden" pot-- a hot pepper or two, a roma, some cilantro, and some oregano and basil. That's kind of fun, b/c it's everything all in one, plus it looks more asesthetically pleasing t han just one type of plant.

Salad gardens also grow well in pots--baby spinach, leaf lettuce of all types, pansies. Although if you're in a hot area, you may struggle with some of the cool crops like that.

I love seeing what grows in pots! Anymore, I limit my actual ground garden to the tomato varieties, my summer squashes, and some broccoli or other some such. Most of my pepper collection and my herbs live in pots all over. :-)

2011-05-09 9:29 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
bootygirl - 2011-05-08 5:44 PM

I am going to do a drip system (rather than soaker hoses) this year.   

Instead of traditional drippers, try this head.    http://www.irrigationdirect.com/dd-sr360s/ I have had great success with them.  They spread the water out much more effectively than the drippers do. 

2011-05-09 10:29 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

phoenixazul - 2011-05-08 8:31 PM Has anyone had any success with container gardening? I'm a renter so I can't dig a proper plot for planting. I've toyed with the idea of getting a couple containers and having a go at it on my "patio" (read: concrete postage stamp poured outside of my kitchen door). I'm only one person so I'd like to keep it simple with the following stuff I eat regularly -Probably one or two tomato plants (Roma? They're the ones I use most in cooking) -Basil (because everything is better with basil) -Green pepper (one? more?) -Chilis (jalapenos) I live in a really really dry climate, and it gets HOT here in summer, which is a huge change from where I've lived before (temperate, wetter, northern). I also don't know what to do with this red soil, or if I'm going to need potting soil or....

I'm attempting my first container garden this year.  I'm doing 3 varieties of bell peppers and jalapenos and might do a small herb garden also.  My mom lives in Colorado and has had good success with peppers and tomatoes in containers as long as she uses starter plants.  I got a mixture of miracle gro potting soil and regular cheap potting soil for mine and mixed them about 2/3 miracle gro and 1/3 regular.

2011-05-09 11:58 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
JamieS - 2011-05-09 10:29 AM
bootygirl - 2011-05-08 5:44 PM

I am going to do a drip system (rather than soaker hoses) this year.   

Instead of traditional drippers, try this head.    http://www.irrigationdirect.com/dd-sr360s/ I have had great success with them.  They spread the water out much more effectively than the drippers do. 

Nice site, thanks for the link.  We just built a 5'x24' raised bed and I have been thinking of the watering system.  Do you prefer this type of watering system over soaker hoses?  Our bed is about 20' from the spout, so a garden hose would need to run over to the bed (across the driveway)

2011-05-09 1:50 PM
in reply to: #3488256

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Elite
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

I installed Garden 1.0 last year, and as with many new releases, it was a complete failure. This year I went all out with good soil and installed Garden 2.0. Garden 2.0 was doing well until it was attacked by varmints. This past weekend I replaced the plants that were attacked and upgraded security, so now I'm on Garden 2.1.

My garden looks like a prison. I have hard cloth fencing in all of the plants, and netting over the top to protect against aerial attack. I have a bathtub outside (from a bathroom demolition in the house) that has lettuce, cilantro, basil, and cucumbers. I have tomatoes and peppers in pots. I have a small raised bed with squash, zucchini, and a few other tomatoes (these were from Garden 2.0 and survived the varmint attack because I had hardcloth installed). A separate area has a small watermelon plant. All of mine is on drip irrigation with a timer.

I'm in the desert, where there is no green stuff growing. If you plant green stuff the varmints go crazy and get them, hence my extreme security measures. So far Garden 2.1 is surviving.



2011-05-09 2:00 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
I've had stuff going in the greenhouse since about Feb.  Still have lots of little things (tomatoes and peppers) popping up in there that need to graduate to bigger cups.  I have 1 completed raised bed that is full of tomatoes and lettuce (I have 2 tomatoes about ready!).  There is also a ton of stuff I planted earlier but it didn't seem to come up....now it's all coming up!  There is some radishes, cucumbers and I think maybe some cilantro.  I failed to mark anything.

The second raised bed was build this weekend and is half full of soil.  I have to lay in the irrigation and then I'm going to graduate some zucchini and watermelon from the g'house to outside.  I'm having a surprisingly good year.  Like Elaine, I have my planters wrapped in chicken wire with shade cloth over the top.  I built in 3 pvc 'arches' so I can fold the wire in to attach and it provides structure for the cloth. 
2011-05-09 2:06 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
PirateGirl - 2011-05-09 1:50 PM

and upgraded security, so now I'm on Garden 2.1.



I suggest you get serious...

2011-05-09 2:42 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

Ah... a subject near and dear to my heart. Growing up with a mom raised on a farm, having a garden was a given. Now I'm grown up and of course I have my own garden at my place. I have 4 raised beds and some pots. Three of the raised beds are 4'x20' and one is 5'x10'. The first of the long ones is tomatoes of random varieties. The plants are still small but they already have sizable tomatoes on them. The second bed is cucumbers. Only have the bed is planted, when the planted side begins to bloom and crawl I will plant the other side, that way I have cucumbers consistently instead of a rush of them, then nothing. The plants are up and almost ready to start crawling. The third long bed is okra, the plants are up, but still very tiny. I've had problems this year with heavy rains washing away the seeds and a varmint digging them up. The smaller bed contains 2 green bell pepper plants that don't seem to be doing much, and a bunch of squash plants that were quick to get about 4" tall but seem to have stalled now. In pots we have lots of baby basil plants, baby chives, and baby broccoli. I have also just planted some jalapeño seeds. Most of this is planted in baby food containers and they get transfered into bigger containers as they grow. The kitchen window is lined with baby food containers and cool whip cartons. Soon I'll be planting zuchinni, banana peppers and green onions. I also have 2 fig trees, a pear tree, a plum tree and 4 blueberry bushes that look dead.  

2011-05-09 2:57 PM
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Elite
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

kmanus - 2011-05-09 1:00 PM I've had stuff going in the greenhouse since about Feb.  Still have lots of little things (tomatoes and peppers) popping up in there that need to graduate to bigger cups.  I have 1 completed raised bed that is full of tomatoes and lettuce (I have 2 tomatoes about ready!).  There is also a ton of stuff I planted earlier but it didn't seem to come up....now it's all coming up!  There is some radishes, cucumbers and I think maybe some cilantro.  I failed to mark anything.

The second raised bed was build this weekend and is half full of soil.  I have to lay in the irrigation and then I'm going to graduate some zucchini and watermelon from the g'house to outside.  I'm having a surprisingly good year.  Like Elaine, I have my planters wrapped in chicken wire with shade cloth over the top.  I built in 3 pvc 'arches' so I can fold the wire in to attach and it provides structure for the cloth. 

And how are the chickens doing? My mom wants to get chickens next year.

2011-05-09 3:29 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
I went raised bed for the first time this year.  Four 4x4 boxes.  Had to fight a stray cat in the neighborhood that was determined to pee my garden to death, but moth balls around the boxes seems to have helped.  He got a bell pepper plant and two squash, though.

Tomatoes, cukes, zucchini, and squash are coming along very well.  Hot peppers (cayenne, habenero, jalapeno), carrots, and onions doing ok.  First time I've tried lettuce that can take the early season heat and...ehh... might get a few.  Bell peppers look weak.  Watermelon patch by the house is still to early to tell.  Just popped in all my herbs (dill, tarragon, oregeno, fennel, sweet basil, rosemary).

Trying eggplant for the first time ever.  We'll see how it goes.



2011-05-09 4:35 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
PirateGirl - 2011-05-09 1:57 PM

kmanus - 2011-05-09 1:00 PM I've had stuff going in the greenhouse since about Feb.  Still have lots of little things (tomatoes and peppers) popping up in there that need to graduate to bigger cups.  I have 1 completed raised bed that is full of tomatoes and lettuce (I have 2 tomatoes about ready!).  There is also a ton of stuff I planted earlier but it didn't seem to come up....now it's all coming up!  There is some radishes, cucumbers and I think maybe some cilantro.  I failed to mark anything.

The second raised bed was build this weekend and is half full of soil.  I have to lay in the irrigation and then I'm going to graduate some zucchini and watermelon from the g'house to outside.  I'm having a surprisingly good year.  Like Elaine, I have my planters wrapped in chicken wire with shade cloth over the top.  I built in 3 pvc 'arches' so I can fold the wire in to attach and it provides structure for the cloth. 

And how are the chickens doing? My mom wants to get chickens next year.



We've let the one out of chicken jail and she's playing with the less bullying one.  The bigger bully got put in chicken jail in an effort to screw up the pecking order.  We also built a run (still need to attach all the wire) this weekend which will give them an additional bit of play area.  They got to enjoy ham and radish greens over the weekend.  I've never had my fingers pecked so much at once.  If only they'd start poppin out eggs! 
2011-05-09 7:46 PM
in reply to: #3489696

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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
PirateGirl - 2011-05-09 11:50 AM

I installed Garden 1.0 last year, and as with many new releases, it was a complete failure. This year I went all out with good soil and installed Garden 2.0. Garden 2.0 was doing well until it was attacked by varmints. This past weekend I replaced the plants that were attacked and upgraded security, so now I'm on Garden 2.1.

My garden looks like a prison. I have hard cloth fencing in all of the plants, and netting over the top to protect against aerial attack. I have a bathtub outside (from a bathroom demolition in the house) that has lettuce, cilantro, basil, and cucumbers. I have tomatoes and peppers in pots. I have a small raised bed with squash, zucchini, and a few other tomatoes (these were from Garden 2.0 and survived the varmint attack because I had hardcloth installed). A separate area has a small watermelon plant. All of mine is on drip irrigation with a timer.

I'm in the desert, where there is no green stuff growing. If you plant green stuff the varmints go crazy and get them, hence my extreme security measures. So far Garden 2.1 is surviving.

Oh, your scarying me.  I am getting ready to start a garden.

2011-05-09 7:56 PM
in reply to: #3488256

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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
Thanks for the advice, folks! I'm super excited to hit the farmer's market this weekend and get some starter plants.

One more question...let's talk fingerling potatoes. I. love. fingerling. potatoes. I love potatoes in general. It seems like the Ozette variety might grow well in OK, but it sounds like potatoes don't like particularly hot weather. Think this is something to give a try or is it going to be too much hassle?

Edited by phoenixazul 2011-05-09 7:58 PM
2011-05-10 9:31 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

gir1with1nose - 2011-05-09 9:58 AM

Nice site, thanks for the link.  We just built a 5'x24' raised bed and I have been thinking of the watering system.  Do you prefer this type of watering system over soaker hoses?  Our bed is about 20' from the spout, so a garden hose would need to run over to the bed (across the driveway)

I've never used soaker hose.  I used the traditional drippers for a while and they work alright to put water exactly at a single plant.  However, as we planted more in the flower beds/gardens, the more drippers we had to add to the system.  Then, found this "shrubbler"  I put it on to try it out and now keep switching out other sprayers and drip heads with this one as I work through the garden.  They really spread the water out nicely and can put out a very gentle spray from just an inch or two all the way our to about a 6-8 inch radius. 

As far as the running the hose over the driveway, I can't help you much there.  once when I needed to cross the front steps, I used 1/2 inch dripper hose with a screw connector and just removed it when i needed a clear path.  You could easily do the same thing and just hook your garden hose to the drip line when you want to water, then remove it when you want the driveway clear. 

Good Luck!

We just put in 2 small garden boxes two weeks ago.  Planted corn, bell peppers, leeks, peas, beans and other stuff I can't remember!  Can't wait for the harvest!!!

2011-05-10 10:03 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

 Semi related slight hijack here;

   Ride like you stole it - Awesome work you've done. I really like the rock wall. We have a bunch of them around us in fields that were settled by German immigrants. Most of the stones they used are smaller limestone they collected while clearing their fields. The time spent building, as you can attest, had to really have been something for them considering their lack of motorized equipment. They used the larger stones for houses and cisterns.

  Still lots of rockwork done around here, mostly limestone instead of bricks in my neighborhood. I have paused many bike rides just to stop and watch the guys put limestone on a new home. It's something to watch a guy take a pile of rocks and build a "vertical jigsaw puzzle" with a trowel and rock hammer.

 



2011-05-10 11:01 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
mdg2003 - 2011-05-10 10:03 AM

 Semi related slight hijack here;

   Ride like you stole it - Awesome work you've done. I really like the rock wall. We have a bunch of them around us in fields that were settled by German immigrants. Most of the stones they used are smaller limestone they collected while clearing their fields. The time spent building, as you can attest, had to really have been something for them considering their lack of motorized equipment. They used the larger stones for houses and cisterns.

  Still lots of rockwork done around here, mostly limestone instead of bricks in my neighborhood. I have paused many bike rides just to stop and watch the guys put limestone on a new home. It's something to watch a guy take a pile of rocks and build a "vertical jigsaw puzzle" with a trowel and rock hammer.

 



Thanks, I built the wall a couple of years ago. Here's the documentation of that process .
http://www.beginnertriathlete.com/discussion/photos/photo-thumbnails.asp?albumid=11929

The patio used the same source of rocks, but because I didn't have to lift any of them into place, not as much rigging was necessary.

2011-05-14 10:44 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
My "drip" system is taking shape.   Yes - using the bubblers, mini soaker hoses, and drip emmitters.

Read about how great chicken poo was and spread several bags and tilled it more - stinky!   And yes, it was composted.    It is going to freeze tomorrow night, so nothing more will go in yet.   I seeded the beets and carrots and chard.   
2011-05-15 4:06 PM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011
We are starting our garden this year.  We decided to go for raised beds to try and get some more growing time with a cold frame.  It snowed twice in the last week and the temp dropped to almost freezing most of those nights so we haven't planted yet.  I have somewhat of a black thumb so I'll be happy if I get 1/3 of the crop I have planned.
2011-05-17 9:56 AM
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Subject: RE: The BT Garden thread - 2011

The spring greens, particularly the broccoli-rabe, got all yellowed out and bug-eaten, which was disappointing.  Spinach has been good and lettuce fantastic, however.  Waiting for the garlic to be ready.


Now I have interspersed "summer" stuff with all of that spring stuff.  I have very little real space, one raised bed, and our weather will turn blistering soon enough.  By then the lettuces, spinach and garlic will be gone, and leave room for the basil, tomatoes and peppers to stretch out their elbows in the sun.  Also, I've planted some herbs along a side fence.  So far: orange thyme, Mexican tarragon, Italian oregano.  There's already a huge bunch of mint from last year.  I'd like another thyme or too, maybe another variety of mint and perhaps a rosemary.  I've left lots of room for each plant (especially the mint!) to spread out.  I also have one sage plant in the raised bed; we'll see how it does.

The only main (food-related) thing I have left to do is dig up the patch of winter wheat in my sidewalk strip (yes,  those ornamental grasses are not just ornamental) and replace it with sweet potatoes like the ones that produced such a gangbuster crop last year.  They love heat! 


Meanwhile, everything non-edible looks and is neglected.  Lawn is quite weedy.  Just haven't had a lot of time - I'll run out and pop a veggie or herb into the ground when I let Jazz out to pee, but can't be bothered with the front.  Meh.

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