Sunday, July 24, 2011

Squirrels At It Again

So I had a whole long winter to plan for squirrel attacks. So what did I do? Nothing. I guess it was partly wishful thinking, maybe they only went after the tomatoes last year because of the heat/rain/who knows what. Well, they've started sampling again. Took a few bites out of some nice ripe Tigerellas, but the straw that broke the camel's back was when they took a big chuck out of an almost ripe Cherokee Purple. Like a big one. And the first one, I might add. So I pondered what to do for a bit. My last year's plan was to build a moveable, modular super cage out of pvc pipe and chicken wire. That would have been pretty cool. But alas, I didn't do it. So I slapped up a crude, crude, very crude fence around them again using leftovers from last years tomato fence. But instead of making it big, solid and ugly, I made it flimsy and ugly. I half suspect it will collapse on the tomatoes before the season is over. And I don't have a good way of accessing the tomatoes. That's gonna be an annoying problem.

SO. Here's my to do list for next year.

  • Build an awesome chicken wire tomato cage with a door over two of the long raised beds.
  • Cover the beds with a load of composted cow manure early in the spring before planting.
  • Bone meal, fertilizer, and egg shells in the tomato holes to combat blossom end rot.
  • Plant seedlings early in the basement so the plants are ready to go once we're past the last frost date.
  • Get pepper seeds from a catalog, not a pepper - we had really poor germination with peppers.
  • Floating row covers for zucchini. Or something. Use the new zucchini rampicante, hopefully that will survive the borers.
  • Build a solid trellis for the peas. They died not long after falling over this year.

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