Patio Gardening 2010: Week 10 – Storms & Powdery Mildew


Sorry to get this post up a day later than usual. I was working on some other projects yesterday, and we didn’t even get the video up until last night, so I’m posting today. Good news is that my camera is back from the shop, so we’ll have better quality photos starting next week.

The weather hasn’t been treating us too well this week. Last week it was rainy, chilly and humid. So we started out this week with some powdery mildew on some of our cucumber plants.

This is the first bout of disease we’ve had to deal with, and I’m not happy about it. I clipped off the leaves that had it the worst, and spray the rest of them with a mixture of 1 part milk and 9 parts water. As a precaution, I sprayed the unaffected cucumbers, plus the squash, zucchini, and pumpkin. Hopefully that will take care of it. We’ll see.

Here’s a picture of the powdery mildew from before I hacked the leaves off:

Our tomato plants shot up after we staked them, which is great. We may have to cage them soon if they keep growing at this rate. The unfortunate thing is that Friday night two very severe thunderstorms swept through the area, with winds 60-70MPH. Our poor plants were beat up pretty bad–especially the tall ones like the beans and tomatoes. (Check out some footage of the wind in our video) The tomatoes are looking a little worse for the wear now.

We’re supposed to have more thunderstorms this week (we had one late last night too). Hopefully they won’t effect the plants that much. I’m mostly worried about the humidity helping to spread the powdery mildew.

On Sunday we were able to pick about 12 more beans, which we fried up in olive oil and had with dinner that night. We also picked a ton of basil and had a delicious caprice salad (basil, fresh mozzarella, & tomato drizzled in olive oil–then we eat it with big crackers). Unfortunately, we didn’t grow the tomatoes, but it was great to save money on the basil (they sell packages with about that much basil in it for about $6 here. It’s robbery!).

We’ve had a few more female flowers show up on some of our cucumber plants and they’re starting to grow into little cucumbers. Hopefully I hand-pollinated them well enough and they won’t fall off!

Check out the video for this week:

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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