The cucurbits are looking good, my friends. Although POD still needs to get a few bright blossoms on deck to attract pollinators, decorate the mulch with aluminum foil to repel aphids, spritz with POD’s special sauce to ward off mildews and bugs, and snip a tomato cage to turn it into a cucumber trellis. Soon.
Oh, the plants on deck are happy. So happy. Sure, they get plenty of water, but nothing beats a nice, gentle soaking from Mother Nature.
As the ever-patient garden widower would would mumble, “Damn farmers, never happy.”
Powdery mildew (a fungal disease that’s no fun at all) is one of the inevitable POD kill-joys. So this year, we’re giving You Grow Girl’s mildew spray (sorta’ — POD’s adding a little milk to the mix and shrinking proportions) a shot and hoping that it’ll keep those filmy white spots away from the Boothby Blonde, True Lemon, Minnesota Midget, and Mystery Melon.
POD’s Powdery Mildew Spray
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. thick, non-detergent soap
2 c. water
2 c. skim milk
Mix the ingredients together, pour it into a spray bottle. Shake. Spray the mixture all over your plants, make sure you hit the undersides of the leaves. Apply once a week and after a rainfall.
Well, thank goodness POD’s cucumbers were just about ready for retirement. They survived a minor case of leaf spot and random blight but powdery mildew did them in.
It’s not a surprise, really. Temperatures have cooled and light has waned: a perfect recipe.
Unfortunately, the Minnesota Midgets have also been touched. Because there are at least six melonettes ripening, the most affected leaves have been snipped and the rest drenched in a dripping coat of Neem.