Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Pros and Cons of Gardening

I'm sure y'all are well aware by now that Nathan and I are beginners at gardening.  We started our first ever veggie garden just this spring.

We saw a lot of growth at the start, and then I started noticing a few things . . . 

The bottom leaves on my broccoli plants were turning yellow and dying off, there were lots of bug marks on my broccoli plants, and somehow none of my herbs were growing like they did last year. 

I did some research and discovered I needed to nip the bug problem in the bud.  So, I got domestic and made my very own bug repellent.  I was so proud.

You can't really see it that well, but this stuff is bright orange with a stronnnng odor.  I found the recipe from No Dig Vegetable Garden online, and I thought I would share it with you because we've had such success with it (so far).  I haven't noticed any additional bug marks, and I've just been dousing my broccoli with this a lot.  

Homemade Bug Repellent (A.K.A. Garlic Fire Spray) -- No Dig Vegetable Garden

  • 1 - 2 TBSP Cayenne Pepper
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1 TBSP vegetable oil
  • 3 squirts of detergent (I just used my dish soap--I think it's Dawn)
  • 7 c. water
  1. Mix this all up in a spray bottle, and go to town!  
As for the yellowness of the plants, after doing some research, it could be a number of things!  Too much heat, too little heat, too much water, too little water . . . you get the point.  So, I took the advice of my green thumb papa and went to the store and picked up some Lime and some 10-10-10 plant food.  I've since sprinkled this all through my garden and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it's not too late for my broccoli babes!

Oh, and the herbs?  Well, they're not growing because our sweet chipmunks won't keep their paws off.  I'm hoping the garlic fire spray repels rodents as well, but I haven't noticed a difference yet.  

Oh, and speaking of chipmunks . . . for those who are interested in the status of our Dearest Sally, I regret to inform you that she has since passed.  Let's just say Nathan got clever with a glue trap and cinder block . . . ouch!  Luckily, I wasn't here the day she passed and Nathan was kind enough to wrap her corpse in a bag and dispose of her before I got home to find her squished to a glue trap.  Her family must be mad and that's why they're tormenting me by eating my herbs.  :(

The good news in this gardening bit is that Nathan and I did have our very first harvest!  On Memorial Day, we enjoyed a salad with fresh romaine from our baby garden.  It was the best salad I ever ate.  In my humble opinion.  I'll post the recipe for it tomorrow.

Nathan snagged a picture of me gathering our greens for the salad

For those of your who are hard core gardeners, I have some serious respect for you!


  1. Gardening is fun, but annoying when animals/bugs attack! I'm always fighting the squirrels who like to dig in the pots & beds and the slugs that eat the plants! I have also figured out that I should stick to only a couple of types of plants because they always seem to grow ok!

  2. Hang in there sister! I bet the spray works great - we used something similar, not sure of the kind so I will ask. I miss our garden this year.


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