Patio Gardening 2010: Week 19 – Icky Red Spider Mites


I’m sorry that I’m a day late on this post, but I was very busy yesterday with some other things and just didn’t get around to taking the pictures. Good news is, my camera will be back from repair tomorrow, so I’ll be able to take decent pictures again!

All right, I have to admit, I’m kind of burnt out on gardening. I’m actually the only one who takes care of the plants (the boyfriend just films the videos), and I’m kind of tired of it. I still water them and everything, I just haven’t been as attentive as I was in the past. I’m letting nature take it’s course.

As far as the squash plants go, they’re still producing flowers and growing, despite the powdery mildew, but I think I’ve given up hope on them producing any fruit. I don’t think we’ll try them again next year. It’s too bad, but I’m guessing our porch just doesn’t get enough sunlight for them.

We’ve had more deaths this week. We lost another cucumber plant and it looks like another pot of bean plants is on it’s way out. One of them seems to be making a comeback…

I think this just may be it for the beans though.

Our cherry tomato plant continue to produce, we harvested over 50 last week alone and we seem to be in a big of a lull again, though there’s more green tomatoes and flowers growing.

We’ve mentioned briefly before that some of the tomato plants were looking a little ick. Some of the leaves were turning yellow and brown and then curling up and dying.

They didn’t match any of the photos of tomato diseases online, so we just chalked it up to super hot and dry weather and inconsistent watering. Well the plants look worse this week, some of them really bad. Then today I noticed some webs on some of the leaves.

As I looked closer, I realized there were little dots on the webbing. Looking even closer, I saw they were moving around. I was then promptly freaked out and came inside to google it.

It looks like we have Red Spider Mites, which apparently thrive in hot dry conditions and can cause the icky appearance of our tomato plants. One of the treatments is to make everything very wet, so I’m going to try spraying the tomato plants frequently with water and see if that helps. If it doesn’t make a difference by this weekend, we’ll invest in some pesticides.

Hopefully this won’t get out of control, but who knows.

There is good news in the garden this week. The pepper plants are doing great, growing tall, and they continue to blossom. There are tiny peppers forming!

Now that we see how well they’re doing, I kind of wish we didn’t plant four of them. The thing is, I do not like peppers. The boyfriend loves peppers. I think one pepper plant would suffice, but considering we had 20 millions seedlings, 4 seemed like a reasonable number. We’ll definitely scale that down for next year.

The basil is still a powerhouse. We made more pesto this weekend and froze the leftovers. Hopefully we can keep that up and stock up on enough frozen pesto to last through the winter.

Here’s the video for this week. It’s short and sweet:

For those who are new, this year the boyfriend and I are doing a little container gardening experiment where we are trying to grow various herbs and vegetables on our patio. We live in the city of Chicago, so traditional gardening is out of the question. You can subscribe to the RSS feed to instantly receive the posts each week and also check out our previous posts. Feel free to subscribe to our Youtube channel as well.


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