Six on Saturday-June 2

May in our part of Indiana brought record heat and very little rain.  Although parts of the state were blessed with rain as June began, all the storms passed north or south of us.  So this “Six on Saturday” is devoted to the effects of the heat.  This season was my third attempt to grow fava beans  Fava bean dried up blooms and this time the heat was just too much for most of them.  I’ve read favas don’t like temperatures over 75, and unfortunately May didn’t have any days less than that, and most were 90 or more.  So, although the plants began with numerous blooms, most of the flowers turned black and dried up and the plants drooped despite regular watering.  Hose water is just no match for the magic of rain.  This week, I’ll remove all plants without pods forming and replace them with pepper plants.  Then we’ll wait and see if the beans themselves mature on the plants with pods.  Not sure how long, I’ll wait.  I’ve read that the fava leaves are good lightly sauteed, so I’ll give that a try with some of the pulled plants.

A second casualty of the heat is the cool-weather lover bok choy, which bolted almost overnight.  Most of it  Bok choy bolted was harvested for stir-fry.  Those flowering stalks are delicious and removing the bok choy creates space for French baby leeks that are ready for planting.  I worry that the broccoli, which just began forming heads a few days ago Broccoli 6-1-18 will succumb to heat as well.  I’m suspicious because the heads that were a lovely blue-green color have suddenly added a brownish-yellow cast.  Another watch and wait to see what develops.  Our temperatures are supposed to drop (to the 80’s) this week so maybe that will help.   On the bright side, the high temperatures have hurried some crops along.  I can’t remember ever having melons blooming in May, but this “Tasty Bites” mini-cantaloupe bloom Melon Tasty Bites bloom appeared May 30th.   The first shelling peas, an early variety called “Strike” were harvested on June 1 even though they were actually the third planting of peas.  These “Green Arrow” peas were actually planted first, followed by a  Bumblebee on pea  seeding of “Knight.”  In addition to the “Strike” there are hundreds of pods setting on “Little Marvel” and “Progress #9”, probably as a result of the excellent pollinating work of the bumblebees who just move across the potager from one row to another as each variety blooms.  The bumblebees were probably delighted to have a broader selection, because as soon as the “Royal Burgundy” beans began to flower, the bees were happily at work there as well,  Bean RB bloom although I didn’t capture it on film.  Things are changing so fast in the potager that a morning walk produces a list of new blooms and crops to put on the day’s menu, and by the evening stroll additions can be noted.  This daily drama makes me feel so blessed that my “allotment plot” is right at hand.  So, that’s my “Six on Saturday” for this week.  Visit The Propagator to see other gardeners’ offerings on this meme.

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About carolee

A former professional herb and lavender grower, now just growing for joy in my new potager. When I'm not in the garden, I'm in the kitchen, writing, or traveling to great gardens.
This entry was posted in fava beans, gardening, Six on Saturday, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Six on Saturday-June 2

  1. bcparkison says:

    Oh pooh! This is why I don’t vegetable garden any more. It is just to unpredictable.

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  2. Robin says:

    I think vegetable blooms are just as beautiful as flowering plants. 🙂

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  3. Artisan says:

    I sympathize with you over your fava beans (I call them broad beans, but I think they’re the same plant) – it can be heartbreaking to see all your hard work undone by the weather. Excessive heat is one problem we never need to worry about in north-west England, but we’ve lost quite a few crops over the years to cold or high winds. My experience of broad beans is that the plants are quite resilient. We sow our early ones in our greenhouse in November and then plant out the seedlings in our polytunnel, so they have to cope with a temperature range of 0 – 30 degrees centigrade (about 30 – 85 Fahrenheit). I would have thought there’s a sporting chance of getting pods from your surviving plants. Let’s hope so!

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    • carolee says:

      There are some pods the size of my little finger here and there so I’ll keep those plants and hope they produce beans eventually. Some plants have none and all black, dried flowers, so I’m thinking they are probably hopeless, pull them out and put peppers in their place. Maybe I’ll get enough for one meal, I hope, because I love them and you can’t find them here. I’ll keep trying to grow them because maybe some year we will have a long, cool spring and they will be happy…and so will I!

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  4. March Picker says:

    Carolee, Indiana sounds so HOT. Unexpectedly so. At least all your cucurbits are ecstatic. That warmth is something my squashes only dream of. And melons larger than minis? Wow, sounds divine.

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    • carolee says:

      We are used to heat in Indiana, but not this early in the season! Usually it’s only July and August that we get some 90 degree days and normally we get over 4″ of rain in May. This year we got 1-1/4″ but spread out so much in tiny bits that the ground barely got wet. And, Indiana is known for cantaloupes, especially in the southwest part of the state, but I’ve grown to love the mini-melons now that I’m cooking for only 2, plus they are tidier and controllable and fit in the fridge easier!

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  5. janesmudgeegarden says:

    I don’t grow too many vegetables because they become unruly and turn feral as soon as my back is turned. Broad beans are something I’ve had some success with though, but I plant them in the winter and then the beans are ready early spring.

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    • carolee says:

      Our winters are too cold to do that. I’m trying to picture “unruly” vegetables, and other than rambling pumpkins none come to mind. All my veg stay nice and tidy in their beds, but I grow a lot of compact varieties, like small cabbages and mini melons, and put the climbers on trellis.

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  6. It has been a very hot May. Felt more like mid July and it was hard on the flowers as well as the vegetables.

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    • carolee says:

      Yes, it felt like July here except the greens are still vibrant. We’ve had dew, so that helps. The flowers are coming and going at great speed. We’ll have tomatoes before we know it, if I can keep them watered! Peppers started blooming yesterday and the summer squash buds are ready to pop.

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  7. A. JoAnn says:

    It’s so disappointing when the weather interferes with normal plant growth cycles. The rain that missed you pelted us with huge drops. The hard rain knocked over my freshly-bloomed peonies. Oh, well.

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    • carolee says:

      I love peonies, but in all the years I grew them, the petals were always knocked off by rain and those giant heads always ended up in the mud. Guess this is the year I should have had them! Glad you got some rain. My mother in Wabash Co. got a nice one, too so her garden looks perfection!

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  8. Laurie Graves says:

    Oh, the weather. In Maine it has been cool and very dry. Today we are getting much-needed rain, but the temp is only 50. Back to turtlenecks and and sweaters. May the rain come your way soon.

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