Well, the rain has finally stopped so I was able to go out and get a good look at my Darwinian fall garden. Not only has the rain taken me away from the garden, but so has my day job as well as some classes I'm taking. This garden is really on its own. My take-aways?
1) My garden does not get much light in the fall. The plants are still quite small because of this. In the future, planting greens in the other side yard in my ginormous pots would be a better idea.
2) I've got a cabbage worm problem on my kale.
Awesome. On both accounts.
I think the cabbage worm is the proper pest for #2 given photos I've found of their damage as well as seeing lots of what I thought were quite pretty white butterflies around (um, those are adult cabbage worms.).
I suppose this is what gardening is all about: Learning from mistakes, working against the odds, etc. I'm just a bit disappointed since I was really, really looking forward to the kale! I'm down, but I'm not out, though! Here's my action plan:
- Do a better job at monitoring and handpick (::shudder::) worms off the plants when I see them.
- If that doesn't help, consider using Bacillus thuringiensis insecticide.
- If the kale is still a skeleton, throw hands up in the air & hope for better luck next year. :)
On the bright side, my mustard greens are doing quite well against the odds. The variety is Florida Broadleaf, so I think it's a kindred spirit (I'm from FL). I've found I really like to use the young mustard greens in salad. It's peppery like arugula (which, btw, didn't really germinate for me. Not sure if it was the seeds or the squirrels digging everywhere...)
So, there you have it. The fall garden is (mostly) surviving but hardly thriving. But that's OK, I think. There's always next year.