I’m wondering how many more grow puns I can dish out.Things seemed to have slowed down a bit for me in the past week and a bit relative to seeding and I actually got a day or two off to reorganize myself and take a small break. In the veggie sector, we got a nice rain and a bit of warm and cool temperatures earlier on to hopefully encourage some great germination. The frost period is over so next I will begin to transplant squash, pumpkins, cantaloupe, watermelon and tomatoes into the garden. A lot of repotting into larger peat pots will be accomplished this week and then hardening off to transplanted into the garden. Peppers, and the small amount of cool season crops will hopefully be transplanted the week after along wtih the sweet potato slips after they are hardened off as well.
See below some picture of some seedlings I captured. In order: wheat, buckwheat/fenugreek, sunflower, pumpkin, radish, pea, corn and bean. The other collage contains in order: bareroot strawberry, transplanted strawberry, bareroot raspberry, transplanted raspberry, bareroot blackberry, rhubarb, asparagus and garlic. The transplanted berries are already well on their way to producing fruit. Stay tuned for more updates!
As for the bees, I recently finished treating/medicating for varroa mites and American/European foulbrood (AFB/EFB). Varroa destructor is a tiny reddish, flattened, oval parasitic mite that attaches to honeybees and infects them with a disease called varroosis. These mites develop on the bee brood right before the larva cell is sealed to mature into an adult bee. They drift into different colonies by hitching a ride on a honey bee once they bee reaches an adult stage. They can ultimately take down a colony if numbers get high enough. AFB and EFB are a type of bacterium that affect the honey bee larva. Once ingested by the larva, it competes for food in the gut ultimately killing the larva. AFB and EFB are different types of bacterium that cause different symptom, the same results and require the same medication. Devastating results can result in the bee colony in some years if they don’t get their meds. (pictures taken from web, see links.)
Next up for the bees is to basically sit bit and relax a bit but check up on them about once a week. I just need to make they have water, protein, food and enough room to grow. There was lots of flowers available for foraging this past while with the flowers of choice being lilacs, dandelions, and other early perennial flowers both wild and tame. After the spring flowers finish and before the summer flowers, there may arise what is called a “dearth” period, if which there are no flowers to forage on. If they colonies don’t have high enough food stores, they will have to be fed.