April 7, 2007

Cutworm War: Pre-Battle

Today I took my first real step towards fighting cutworms in my garden this spring. Regular readers may recall my troubles last year and I've been collecting toilet paper rolls for a few months now so I think I'm set for planting. That won't happen until late May though and I had heard that one good technique is to turn over the soil while its still sort of cold out but, the ground is no longer frozen. The idea is to expose the cutworm eggs (is it larva? pupa? I know I should know this) to the harsh elements before they grow into their next, most damaging stage. The high temp today was 40 and tonight's low should be about 33 degrees so I'm hoping that will be cold enough to freeze them to death - literally.

I'm not entirely sure if I've got the timing right - so it could be too soon or too late but, I figure there's no harm in trying. Also, it was GREAT to get back out there digging in the dirt. Technically, by turning over my garden in the fall last year I ALSO did some damage to the cutworms but, given the seedling carnage last year I figure it's better to be safe than sorry.

Over the past few days I've come up with a few ideas for layout. I feel like last year was functional but, not very inspiring. This year I have an idea of a path through the garden that vaguely resembles a question mark. To pull this off and make room for all the plants I have in mind it might be time to give up on the strawberries. I didn't really get more than a tiny handful last year so I can't really say that I grew strawberries as much as I grew strawberry potential.

Meanwhile my order of seeds arrived and I got 2 kinds of beets: Golden and Red Ace. I'm most excited about golden beets but, red ace is my "safety" since they're supposed to be easy to grow.

I expect the blogging to pick back up again now that I'll actually be out there although right now true gardening weather still seems like a loooong way away.