Big Ugly June 2023 Blog

As usual, not only are our gardeners awaiting a bountiful harvest, but so are the usual assorted critters: deer, crows, chipmunks, slugs, etc. Sometimes it turns into a definite battle of wits between the gardeners and the garden pests, which can get interesting if the garden pests find other ways to get their share of the harvest.

So far the best solutions are:

  • Protecting especially vulnerable plants with tulle (cheaper than garden netting, but lets’ rain and sun through, but not bugs, rabbits, etc.
  • Cinnamon tends to deter chipmunks, but must be placed on all tempting plants as the chipmunks just move over to the next unprotected plant
  • Garlic- mixing garlic and water to make a garlic spray as many garden pests don’t care for strong smells
  • Planting companion flowers and herbs such as mint, lavender, or marigolds (which some gardeners swear deter slugs)
  • Beer traps to trap slugs
  • Coffee grounds to repel pests and add nutrients (several say they add crushed egg shells as well to the coffee grounds as they are like shards to soft pests plus add calcium to the soil)

We started off slow, but over the past week, peas are really beginning to come in, and are beautiful and full and sweet. One of our gardeners was kind enough to share her first harvest of peas with me so that I could make a fresh pea salad that my aunt used to make when I was growing up, with fresh peas (uncooked), diced cheddar cheese, diced red onion, and sometimes a bit of diced red pepper for color. It was delicious, and reminded me why so many of her peas never made it into the house when she sent us out to pick a mess for dinner (for those who need the term “mess” translated, it means enough for your family for one meal).

May the rest of our harvest season be as bountiful and delicious as our peas.