Grow Your Garden, Week of April 30th

You will probably see your second row of peas peaking through the earth, and should start seeing some young radishes popping out of the ground soon too. Keep weeding, and taking those pesky maple keys out before they start sprouting in your rich fertile earth. We got a bit of rain this week, but your garden could probably use a good soak by Sunday as this weekend is supposed to be warm and sunny. Yay! When you are watering, it is important to water DEEPLY rather than often. When you water just enough to wet the top of the soil, the roots of your veggies grow upwards towards the water and then are more susceptible to drying out. When you water deeply, you encourage the roots to grow downwards towards the water as the top of your soil starts to dry out. This makes your plants hardier and healthier. You should be watering for at least 15 minutes and make sure to get right into the corners! It is also important to use a rose (nozzle attachment that makes your hose into a shower rather than a stream) to disperse the water and avoid drowning any one plant. The ideal time of day to water is early in the morning. The hot noonday sun evaporates a lot of the water before it can penetrate deeply enough. Avoid watering in the evening at all costs! If the leaves of your plants, and the surface of the soil are still wet when the sun goes down it really encourages slugs to move in a wreak havoc!! This brings me to my next topic: SLUGS. These are garden enemy #1. They are gross, put holes in our nice leafy greens and can even take out an entire seedling overnight! The best way to deal with slugs is to hit them early and often so they don’t multiply. Prevention: Make sure to keep dead leaves and other debris out of the garden – this is their favourite food. Don’t water in the evening. Fill in any slug homes around your garden. They LOVE cracks between the wood and the ground so look around the outside of your garden to make sure the wood is touching the ground everywhere. Fill in with soil where it is not. Attack: go slug hunting at dusk (or dawn if you are up). This is when they head out into your garden for a snack. Pick them up and squish them, then throw them away. Dead slugs are also a favourite slug food (YUCK) Beer traps are also effective, but also gross. Fill a shallow dish with beer and leave it out at dusk. Slugs love beer and will crawl in and drown. Make sure to change the beer daily. Slug corpses rotting in beer are the grossest of all. Please let me know if you have any questions, Happy hunting!

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