Monday, July 9, 2012

Relief at Last

Finally some relief from the heat on Sunday.  Saturday the temperature reached 106 degrees here in SW Indiana, the third consecutive day of 100+ degree weather, after a week with highs in the upper 90’s.  The weatherman called this an epic heat wave and for once that was not an exaggeration.  The hot weather has taken its toll on the vegetable plants.  The tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and squash mostly stopped setting blossoms or developing fruits.  I expect some gaps in production soon.  The okra plants thrived in this weather. 

I watered heavily from the pond nearly every day and most of the plants stayed healthy, even though they did not grow much.  Saturday all the squash plants showed a lot of chlorosis (yellowing) of the leaves.  I think this was more a result of the heat shutting down some biochemical processes, not nitrogen deficiency, as this happened suddenly. 
It was a week to get things out of the ground.  I dug up the Yukon Gold potatoes (previous post).  The second batch of onions dried.  I cut off the tops and rubbed off the outer skins.  I pulled up the third and last batch of onions and spread them out on the screen to dry.  That leaves empty bed space of about 25 square feet that I will seed with snap beans shortly.  

I harvested two Italian sweet peppers and some small hot peppers.  I’ve tossed a lot of developing peppers and tomatoes that were burned from the heat or had blossom end rot.  It looks like the tomatoes and peppers are working through the BER, sure hope so.  I think much of the problem was due to inadequate water during the heat wave. 

For the week:   Squash 15 oz, cucumber 10 oz, okra 5 oz, tomatoes 1 lb 10 oz, scallions 3 oz, peppers 9 oz, potatoes 5 lb 4 oz, onions 4 lb 14 oz.   Total 12.8 lb.  For the year 57.7 lb.  


Lynda said...

So glad your garden won't suffer the heat for a while. Your heat has hit California...and now it's time for my garden to get scorched!

kitsapFG said...

You really deserved a break from that heat - so glad some relief has arrived. Getting the garden through such a prolonged heat stress must have been a real challenge. Hopefully the squash plants that yellowed will revive and resume more normal looking growth soon for you.

David Velten said...

BER is a tough problem. Two years ago we had a hot, dry summer and the result was BER not only on tomatoes but also the peppers and eggplant. You have to keep them consistently moist, which is difficult given the weather you are having. The pump you put in is a great idea. Hopefully it cools down a bit so your plants can set some more fruit.

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