Monday, July 17, 2006

With Linda Hales' Mother-in-law in Huntington Beach

Good morning, Growers!

Here are some pictures of Linda Hales' mother-in-law who also lives in Huntington Beach. As you can see, for reasons unknown yet suspicious, Linda's vine, also in Huntington Beach, and very close by, is much more vigorous:

'Hey Stuart,

Here is the pumpkin plant growing at Gene's mom's house. It has doubled in size from the last time I saw it...Who knows? It may be saving all of its energy for the end to show up everyone...Heehee.

The card in the first picture is for the plant to meditate on, just in case it isn't sure what kind of plant it is...


I read a book titled, Native American Gardening: Buffalobird-Woman's Guide to Traditional Methods, by Gilbert Wilson over the week-end. It's a very comprehensive investigation of traditional Native American gardening methods, including a fascinating description of the custom of 'garden-watching'. A special raised viewing platform was constructed of cottonwood tree branches and poles, and one or two watchers, usually women, would sing songs and make sure nothing happened to their crops.

I know of at least one young grower who sings to her pumpkin every morning. So far, it seems to be working.

Because of some powdery mildew patches on my vine, I sprayed a baking soda mixture on the plant Saturday. I also noticed noticed that I have a primary vine crack right at the stem of the pumpkin. As the pumpkin grows larger, it will make the crack bigger until it separates itself from part of the primary vine. This is not a good situation. It also demonstrates why it's best to select a pumpkin that is growing perpendicular to its vine.

Still, I did have a chance to measure it yesterday morning:

Side to side: 47"

Back to front (blossom end to stem end): 47"

Circumference: 66"

Total: 160"=95 pounds estimated weight

The hot weather continues! The humidity in the air is ideal for powdery mildew, so be vigilant!