The good news is we harvested our first green beans this week – Yeah!
|Contender Bush Beans|
The bad news is my hunch about the browning leaves on the Golden of Bacau climbers turns out to be right. They are infected with Bacterial Brown Spot – just like last year – Boo!
Since this disease is infectious, a few of the Contender beans that were planted right next to the Golden of Bacau are already infected - and that is how I was able to confirm that those browning leaves were in fact bacterial brown spot.
|Contender Bean Infected with Bacterial Brown Spot|
The source of the infection is obviously the seed. Last year, I wasn’t so sure as I made a bit of a goof when I planted the beans, planting them way too close to the peas. They did not grow very well in the beginning and all of my climbers had browning leaves on the bottom (not just the Golden of Bacau) from the too close quarters. I thought that they were perhaps weak to start with and that is what made them susceptible to the infection.
This year, I gave the climbers lots of space (comparatively speaking). I noticed browning on the Golden of Bacau leaves when the plants were still small, while all of the other beans looked green and healthy. Had I been sure that it was bacterial brown spot (which I wasn’t), I would have pulled them right there and then.
Another telltale sign of this infection is the brownish markings on the stems.
|Brown Markings on Golden of Bacau Stems|
The above photo was taken this past weekend. Earlier in the plants development, the brownish spots were much less conspicuous, but still present. I did notice them but wasn't sure whether the markings were brown spot or simply natural colouration on this type of bean. Now I know.
The vines are over 6’ tall now and the pods are forming. Last year, I was able to harvest around 5 lbs. of these wonderful beans before the bacterial spot took over so I have decided just to leave them and try to harvest what I can. The infection is probably already in the soil and/or the surrounding beans so even if I pull them up now, there is no guarantee that the rest of the beans won’t get infected – I think the risk is worth it as I do love the Golden of Bacau beans.
Moving on from my bean troubles, this past week I also harvested some more cucumbers and hot peppers. A handful of chives that were destined for tuna salad also made it into the basket.
|Hungarian Wax Peppers, Garden Sweet Cucumbers & Chives|
The Garden Sweet cucumbers are doing so well! I decided to make refrigerator pickles with the last batch. Yum yum!
|Refrigerator Dill Pickles|
See those onions in the pickles? My first harvest of onions – ever! I was so excited. I got the kids out there and we picked the smallest Ailsa Craig onions, the runts of the litter, so to speak.
|Ailsa Craig Onions|
- the runts of the litter -
Of course I needed some dill for the pickles – so I harvested a bunch as well.
|"Hera Organic" Dill|
Making a repeat appearance in the harvest tally is lettuce. And just in time too as we had finally finished the last of two huge bowls of lettuce this past week. That lettuce was harvested 3 weeks ago when I pulled the spring planting. The leaf lettuces did fine for the first couple of weeks but then deteriorated quickly. The Batavian lettuce (Sierra MI), however, lasted the whole time with only a bit of browning on the bottom of the stem in week 3. Pretty amazing.
A few more tomatoes were harvested, still from the Bloody Butcher plants. I see some tomatoes on a couple of other varieties that are just on the verge of ripening. Our days have been balmy and our nights have been very cool lately – more indicative of late August than July. Perhaps that is impacting how quickly everything is ripening? It has definitely slowed down the hot pepper production.
|Sierra MI Lettuce & Bloody Butcher Tomatoes|
Harvested but not photographed were also a few Sure Thing zucchini. The plants are still rather small (compared to what they should be) and I have lost a few squash due to lack of pollination. On the bright side, I have seen more pollinators buzzing around the borage recently, so that's promising.
|Bee Coming in for a Landing on the Borage|
My harvest totals this week were:
Beans - 588 grams (1.30 lbs)Cucumbers – 1,220 grams (2.69 lbs)
Lettuce – 328 grams (0.72 lbs)
Onions – 152 grams (0.34 lbs)
Hot Peppers – 140 grams (0.31 lbs)
Summer Squash – 814 grams (1.79 lbs)
Tomatoes – 256 grams (0.56 lbs)
Herbs – 28 grams (0.06 lbs)
Total for Week – 3,526 grams (7.77 lbs)
Total to Date – 34.94 kg (77.03 lbs)
To see what everyone else has been harvesting over the past week, head on over to Daphne’s Dandelions, our host for Harvest Mondays.
Till next time…