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Spring 2019, Week 4, Planting Madly Yet? And, Here Comes Rain/Flooding

Well, I just typed a really long thread to kick off this week and then lost it before I could hit submit, so this one will be short.

Happy Easter everyone!

The next couple of days should be great to catch up on planting, especially if you are having to work in between rainstorms and deal with excessively muddy soil. Note that the rain returns soon though.

Here's the QPF showing the projected 7-day rainfall totals:

7-Day Qualitative Precipitation Forecast

My plans for this week are pretty simple---just to try to finish getting the front garden planted so I can start on the back garden as soon as possible. If we get excess rainfall, the back garden will have to sit a while longer and dry out. It still is excessively wet right now, and our local TV met is talking about the possibility this week of excess rainfall and potential flooding. We just got the Lake Murray spillway road reopened yesterday once water stopped flowing over the road, and now I feel like it is likely to close again soon.

I believe all our trees, shrubs and herbaceous perennials have leafed out or are in the process of leafing out now.

Pest levels are not too bad yet, and mostly I've just been seeing and killing Southern Green Stink Bugs and brown stink bugs. I am not seeing many cool-season pests and wondered if we skipped them this year or if they'll show up late.

Today's wind is going to be brutal and I am contemplating moving the tomato plants I'm holding for the Spring Fling into the greenhouse to keep them out of today's gusty winds. It just dries out their soil-less mix so quickly since the plants really are too big. That's not their fault---it just has been the kind of year where they have grown like gangbusters and ought to be in the ground already.

Speaking of the greenhouse, we turned it into a grandkids' haven a few days ago by putting the kids' inflatable wading pool in the west side of the greenhouse. On Friday afternoon, it was 99 degrees in there and the pool water was warm enough that they got to spend a couple of hours splashing, squealing with laughter and playing. That's a nice way to use a too-hot and mostly empty greenhouse, and I still have plenty of room at the east end to move flats of plants back inside if I choose to do that.

The first tomato plants to produce a harvest will be Cherokee Purple and Bush Early Girl, which were 2 of the first 3 plants I put in the ground. They had flowers and a couple of small fruit on them when I transplanted them into the ground in March. They are in a race to produce the first ripe fruit. Due to the excessively cloudy, cool, rainy weather, the first tomatoes harvested will not be very large, but they still will be home-grown tomatoes and may be harvested before the end of April.

Cool season crops are doing really well and some of the ones planted earliest are being harvested now.

Warm season crops mostly aren't even in the ground yet due to persistent rainfall and very wet soil, but I'll be working on getting more of them planted this week. The tomatoes (around 80 or 85 are either in the ground or in large containers) are going great, and the 7 jalapeno pepper plants in the great are growing well too. Some of them are flowering and setting fruit.

We need to mow today (sigh) as the grass and weeds are growing like gangbusters. The wildflowers look great though.

Watch for tent caterpillars. They are everywhere here now.

What's new with everyone else? What are you working on this week?


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