Thursday, August 27, 2009

late summer garden

My daughter is growing gigantic sunflowers in a bid to win the 'biggest head' in the sunflower category at the county fair.  The competition is pretty stiff, and even though she researched giant sunflower seeds, ordered them from some obscure catalogue, planted them early, watered, fed and lovingly cuddled them in her arms while crooning ancient plant-growing ballads,  and transplanted them under a full moon, I don't think she'll win.

The problem is, first they had to grow about seven feet tall.  Then, about two weeks ago, teeny tiny heads began to appear, and so far, they only look to be regular-sized.  Perhaps with sheer luck and a blast of sunshine, they might grow to be gigantic heads.  But I highly doubt it.

My tomatoes, on the other hand, are doing quite well.  There has been a blight which has killed many  local tomatoes, but mine have escaped.  I'd like to think that this was due to my sharply honed and refined gardening skills, but I'd be lying.  Mostly I think it was due to an overabundance of horse manure-which is magical stuff by the way.  But I don't want to be seen as bragging too much about my tomatoes.

Because I mostly want to brag about these:

Never have I  produced such an abundance of large butternut squash.  We'll be eating those 'till we turn orange, I suppose.  Can't wait.

Every summer is a gamble, in terms of vegetable-growing pursuits, isn't it?  Ah well,  it's not about the glory of winning the giant head competition, or the fabulous eight-dollar prize (yes, that's right, eight big ones-and I think cost of admission is twelve).  It's about seeing how much edible stuff you can grow with a minimal amount of effort and and healthy dose of neglect.  I'm surprised every year.


natasha the exile on Mom Street said...


I love butternut squash too, and it freezes so nicely.

Those tomatoes would never ripen on the vine in my yard...I like 'em fried and green too much for that!

Muddy Boot Dreams said...

My fav squash, actually any squash is my fav.

They might not be the largest sunflowers, but with that lovely morning glory twining around the stem, they are gorgeous.

Good Luck.


Firefly Hill said...

Love the sunflowers...I cannot ever seem to grow them! Good luck to your daughter!

LadyFi said...

Wow - what are you feeding those veggies. They're enormous! And those sunflowers are truly magnificent!

Pony Girl said...

They may not win, but those sunflowers are gorgeous! Do you make butternut squash ravioli? A friend made it once, it was delish!

Far Side of Fifty said...

Well your daughters sunflowers are beautiful! Especially with the Morning Glory for added interest!
I love squash too..only Spaghetti Squash is my very favorite. Sadly I did not grow any..but I have cooked and frozen some for next winter:)

Mary Olson said...

I am completely jealous of your tomatoes. My cherry tomatoes are doing fine but the regular tomatoes have not progressed from the state of being small, hard, green balls. It's been so cool this summer. I'm probably going to have to just pick them and try to ripen them in paper bags.