How would you describe summer in beautiful Queensland? I am sure cold beers and fun times probably come to mind.
Well, I’ll happily have a beer and give my veggie patch a good old stink eye as I watch it fall into disarray in the midst of an angry Australian summer, but I guarantee you I am not having a fun time. It’s Hot, It’s Humid, and the mozzies. Oh my god, the freaking mozzies! I generally love spending time in my garden, but in the midst of summer it’s heart breaking. Here’s why:
It’s so freaking hot that not many plants stand a chance in the direct beaming sun. You can check my list of plants that I try to stick to in summer time over here. It’s hit and miss really, as to what gets fried and what doesn’t. Then it rains too much or it doesn’t rain enough. For a successful harvest it’s really hard to be left to it’s own devices!
Storms are great to cool off the scorching heat, but the humidity that follows just brings in so much disease to my patch. My beans get rust, my potatoes get blight (yes I probably shouldn’t try to grow potatoes), some kind of spotty fungus on my swiss chard and all the squash get mildew (zucchini, pumpkins, melons). It feels like a losing battle.
Fruit fly find your own god damned fruit, or at least leave me one capsicum so it can turn red. I have 7 capsicum plants that I planted in early spring, all have had a ridiculous amount of fruit on them, all of which have been stung by fruit fly and none have ended up in our kitchen. The caterpillars come in droves and in a day or so an entire cabbage has been annihilated. Oh and the freaking mozzies. It’s best to just walk away. yeah yeah, ideally you want to have some companion or decoy plants, but when space is limited it is difficult to have enough room for yourself!
I totally get why people give up on their gardens sometimes, obviously I love it to much to give up completely. But next year I am quitting summer time growing and I am going to the beach!