Friday, July 1, 2011

Garden experiments succeed and go awry

I recently checked photos in seed catalogs and online to see if my celery and jicama plants are following a traditional path. When I experiment with new vegetables and have no one familiar with them to consult with about their progress, I look elsewhere for resources to tell me if I’m hitting the mark or not. My observations tell me the jicama is doing well; the celery isn’t looking as promising.

My first problem with the celery was that although lots of it sprouted, not much of it lived to transplant time. I think I had six plants to put in the ground. Now, I have two. That number could diminish even further.

Celery leaves look sort of like parsley. The problem with my plant’s leaves is that they’re curling. I’ve organically fertilized and water but I fear that the dry 10 days we had in June might have sealed their fate. It was so uncomfortable outside that I didn’t water as often as I should have; perhaps they won’t recover.

On the other hand, the jicama is vining with lovely leaves just as every resource, and my gardener’s instincts, tells me they should. They’re in a part of the garden that gets the most sun and they seem to love it there. The small plants are now spreading so I assume that below the earth they are also growing. Oh if only there were a way I could take a peak! Instead, I’m trying to learn another lesson in patience, hoping I will be rewarded at the end of the season when I can enjoy that unique jicama crunch.

If I succeed with at least one new crop, I’ll still be a smiling gardener.

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