I just assumed the heirloom tomato Cherokee Purple was naturally prone to being hideous and did not think much of it. As they began to ripen they were full of rotten spots. The whole crop was hideously formed and rotting on the vine. Well I won't be growing those again. I still did not think much of it because the plants looked perfectly fine while they were growing. Yes the lower leaves were browning, but not unusually so.
It's Late Blight. The tell tale symptoms have now shown up on the Better Boy tomatoes. Brown lesions on the leaves with a white fuzz on the underside of the spot's margins. This season of monsoon and infected big box tomato starts have combined to blight this year's tomato crop.
Tomorrow the Cherokee Purple will be bagged and tossed. I will salvage what we can from the Better Boy over the next week and then toss those. They never did grow as prolifically as last year and once these fruit ripen that is all there will be. We did have plenty tomatoes and the Juliet grape tomatoes are still doing fine.
This was not the year of the tomato.
This was the year of the corn. Until two days ago when Mr. Raccoon found something he liked. Varmint! If he doesn't steal it all tonight I will do a major harvest in the morning and more fresh corn will be frozen for later eating, at least what we don't eat for lunch. We've had plenty corn.
The cucumbers got the Wilt again and did not produce at their maximum potential, but there is no more room on the top shelf of the refrigerator because of all the jars of pickles. We got plenty cucumbers.
Oh the traumas of this year's roadside vegetable garden. Plagued by grasshoppers. Drooped by Wilt. Blighted by blights and ransacked by coons. Varmint!
And there is no more room in the freezer or refrigerator and we have been eating fresh produce since mid May. There have been sugar snap peas, pole beans, lettuce, turnips, beets, carrots, corn, cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, Magda squash, peppers, potatoes, acorn squash to come, maybe even cantaloupe and leeks we haven't tried yet.
My roadside vegetable garden is not as uniformly lush as this one closer to town, but it has fed us well.
It sure is pretty when it blooms, but they usually cut the flowers off. It is a dying crop in these parts.
The roadside vegetable garden will probably close down a bit earlier in this year of the monsoon. There will be some late season carrots and beets from a second sowing I hope. I could even seed some more lettuce, damn grasshoppers, but the main players are already winding down.
There is a learning curve that I am on for growing things at this altitude in the wilderness. The more successful I get the more likely we will be needing a big chest freezer.