Spring has sprung, me, not so much

I’ve been a bit slow on getting posts up this year.  It’s been a tough winter for me and just dragging, health issues seem to be catching up with me as not able to do as much this year as last, or the year before, etc.  Getting old sucks, getting old and sick sucks even more.  I try to walk every day for exercise and the distance has been decreasing the last couple of years.  It takes a lot out of me and some days I’d like to skip it to put the energy into gardening or yard work but those two pairs of big dog eyes say no, that’s not an option.

The tomato plants went in March 27 again this year and so far they’re looking good

Anyway, gardenwise, lots of setbacks so far.  I thought I’d plant carrots, spinach and cilantro in the greenhouse raised bed to double crop with the tomatoes.  The woodlice ate everything as soon as they came up.  I replanted the carrots and for some reason they left the second planting alone and they’re just not starting to get their first real leaves so at least one experiment will get to run.  I replanted spinach and cilantro and once again they were eaten as fast as they came up.

Wood lice (sow bugs, roly poly, BB bugs, etc.) are generally considered beneficial insects but the population in the greenhouse is so high that I just can’t plant from seed in there, although if I put in good sized starts like the tomatoes they don’t bother them.  I don’t want to wipe them out, so going to try to live with the situation for now.

I’ve also been fighting slugs in the greenhouse.  There’s not many, but I’ve lost a number of flats of starts to them.  All is fine for a week and then I come in one morning and a whole tray of starts has ben reduced to stumps by one slug that snuck in, traversed the bone dry bed, climbed up the supports to the tray, and found the babies, all while surrounded by nothing but lush grass and plants as far as the eye can see.  Why?  I don’t know, just like the deer that fight their way through the blackberry thickets to get to my raspberry plants as they’re leafing out.  Apparently blackberry bushes aren’t as interesting as raspberry bushes, although I think they browse by price tag…

The berry plants I put in last year are looking good, except for the Prime-Ark45 blackberries.  I think they may have been frost bit, but everything else is looking great.  The Albion strawberries are growing like mad and are flowering, they survived the tough winter just fine.  I planted spinach and carrots in outdoor raised beds today and lightly tilled the bed where my potatoes will go in a couple of weeks just to turn under the weeds and break the surface.  We’re supposed to get a week of sun and should manage to get a lot done if I don’t stay out too late looking at Mars and Jupiter as Mars is getting very close and Jupiter has been giving some great views through the scope.