Saturday, September 10, 2016

Garden Update by Cory

We hiked to the new gardens Thursday this week.

We need rain, things are still green but even some established trees are wilted.

Gardeners in the floodplain are busy preparing gardens and planting peanuts.

The share cropper has part of our big garden freshly planted to rice.

Note the erosion control berms made of the old weeds.

I have expressed concern to him about topsoil erosion and the berms are the usual local practice although of limited effect on soil loss from our heavy downpours, about 150 inches of rain in a normal year.

It is good having someone working the garden for free to help keep livestock out but he isn't there all the time.

A neighbor reported that he tied up a big cow that was in the garden and said we should come more often.

Damage was minor with nibbles here and there and only one palm mowed off.

I sprayed most of the trees/palms on the underside of young leaves and at the base with deer/rabbit repellent, will see if it keeps livestock and rhino beetles from eating the trees.

Peach palms on campus are blooming again as harvest starts.

One tree that had a small bunch of small fruit last year has four good size bunches now and several flower buds.

 The fruit are much bigger than they look on the tree.

The flavor is good.

Fruit harvested on campus this week:
front - 3 banana varieties (Gros Michael, Ceylon/little Cory, and a FHIA hybrid), breadnut, hot bird peppers, miracle fruit and two barbados cherries/acerola, wild passionfruit.

2nd row - bilimbi (sour fruit) peach palm, sapodilla, breadfruit slice.

3rd row - starfruit/carambola,

4th row - Blanc' mango, atemoya, cacao, avocado, biriba, 'Baptiste' mango.

5th row - squash, black sapote, coconut.

Not included but also producing: guava, African oil palm, regular passionfruit. There would probably still be a few pineapple but the last few disappeared before full size.

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