Monday, July 13, 2009

It's summertime

Finally it feels like summer. I mean, summer in New Mexico is often all about thunderstorms, but after last weeks now legendary hailstorm we have had some hot weather. I think it hit 90 or so yesterday, and today is going to be a scorcher with temps maybe going into the mid-90s.

What kind of sucks is there is a wildfire burning south of us in Bandelier National Monument (the west side of it, so it is still open). The wind tends to blow from the south or southwest in the afternoon so we have had some really smoky days. And I just read this: "We expect this fire to burn throughout the summer,” said Kemp." Damn! They are managing it, but want it to burn to clean out dead trees and logs. However, the air quality is not good when it's smoky in town and as a "sensitive population" person due to my asthma I have to be careful.

The light turns that kind of neat warm shade that makes everything look rosy and golden. But the haze is bad, the smell is bad. Combined with 85 degree living room it makes it a little unpleasant since we can't BBQ and sit on the cool deck. I'll stop whining about it now. Better than a catastrophically huge fire in a few years because too much forest is filled with fuel.

Back to the hot summer weather. It is great for the garden, of course. The hoophouse is open at both ends now and I will probably keep it open through August unless the weather cools off too much. Right now I need bumblebees to come in and pollinate so I can stop artificially inseminating the squash and shaking the tomatoes, chiles, and eggplant. The cukes are about to flower as well. Everything is taking off.

I wish it would warm up at night -- it's been in the mid to upper 50s still which can keep some plants from setting fruit. Some tomatoes have set so that is good and I'm excited for the first tomatoes (which is probably a month off unless the heat keeps up.)

I harvested my first summer squash yesterday and picked a lot of basil to keep it from flowering. The New Zealand spinach is also thriving and I've been liberally harvesting it. Technically it is not a true spinach, but it tastes like it and thrives in the heat. The beans have yet to appear but the plants are climbing all over the place. The flowers on the scarlet runner beans and the nasturtiums have been attracting hummingbirds, one of which fed on every single red flower in and out of the hoophouse. And that is the state of the garden...I'll post some pics over the next few days.

1 comment:

  1. That's too bad about the fire. I remember my eyes bothering me when I lived there. I've never heard of New Zealand Spinage.