This morning I posted on my original site: lucindalines about some of the failures I have been experiencing. One of them involves my garden and the results of planting sunflowers for the first time. This actually is not the first time that I have planted sunflowers, it is just the first time that I have put them in the vegetable garden. A couple of years ago or was that last summer, I stuck a few seeds in the ground on the south side of the old garage on my mother’s property. They didn’t grow real large, but made for some great pictures, especially since the garage is an old building with the paint peeling and such. Let me see if I can dig up some pictures to post here.
So you can see what I mean with these pictures. This is sort of what I was hoping for again this year, something that would look nice, maybe attract a few bees or other pollinators and in general use up some space in the garden that wasn’t going to be used for anything else. Well, boy oh boy, was I wrong. Instead the only thing I got was some sunflower beetle or something like it that is trying to suck the life out of anything it clamps its rotten little teeth into. The close up flower in the picture has a grasshopper attached to it. I would welcome these because I know what to do about them without poisoning the family with chemical on everything. This new bug is out of my league. James’ brother said we need to spray the plants with Sevin. Fine by me because again, I am not looking to consume the sunflowers, but what about the other crops that are being decimated? My poor beans are starting to look pretty ragged, and I believe it is whatever started on the sunflowers.
My aunt reminded me what we did the year the grasshoppers were all over the beans and the tomato plants. A neighbor lady suggested using regular flour. She noticed that the ingredients on the can of powder which is normally sprinkled on plants, especially cabbage is mostly flour with a little chemical. She speculated that the flour alone might do some damage. We both found that the grasshoppers were not able to get a foothold to stand on the leaves and eat. It is also hard on the cabbage worms, so I tried it again this year.
So far the cabbage has stayed worm free, but as I say, I am not sure what to do about the beans. I am about to break down and use the Sevin on them. If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear them. The problem is that I don’t see anything on the plants except black ants. I suspect the ants are there after some sort of aphid because they are known to protect aphids. And, there is not one ladybug in the garden, the ants are likely responsible for that too. I did see one ladybug early in the season, but it was on the zinnias, and perhaps that is where it has decided to stay.
At any rate, Happy Gardening to you.