The damage 2

Garden Adventure II 03/20/12

Laura Cooke shares her struggles with trying to maintain an urban garden in the city. Everything wants a bite.

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It’s month 2 of my first garden adventure and now that the plants are relatively established, it seems that everything in the vicinity is determined to munch them to death.

From white flies and caterpillars to aphids and a mysterious something that moves swiftly through the aubergine leaves, everyday sees a constant battle between bugs and me. It makes one realise that it’s no easy task growing your own vegetables – particularly in an environment where there isn’t a natural eco-system to ensure a balance.

Dealing with pests
I have tried some organic pesticides to tackle the aphids…so far their numbers seem to be dropping. I did try a solution of tomato leaves and water initially, but with the number of aphids, it didn’t prove effective enough.

When it comes to the aubergines, judging by what I saw on the web, it looked like they were either being attacked by slugs or snails (although I haven’t seen any.) Further research suggested the damage could be caused by some sort of beetle. Recent night-time investigation reveals that the culprit is most likely one of the four giant caterpillars I found. Whether it’s all of these creatures or only the caterpillars, everything wants a bite of my veggies!

It’s quite tempting to let everything go to pot and let all the little creatures run amok in the garden. Who knew that gardening, as well as highlighting the wonderful process of growth, would also involve so much fighting against these little critters.

Here are a couple of images of the “garden” and the damage.

The veggie garden in month two.

The damage

In spite of these problems, I have been had a regular crop of spinach, coriander, basil and chillies. The lettuce has also been fast-growing and tasty – we have one left in the crate and hopefully we can get another bunch going shortly.

My garden adventures have so far been rewarding: I’m learning as I go along and have new found respect for all the green thumbs out there.

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Laura Cooke is the editor and creator of the Veggie Bunch website and community.

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2 Responses to this article

Jodi March 20, 2012 Reply

Its looking lovely. We also learn as we go along… sometimes things are lost to the bugs, but mostly its good.

There’s something special about going out and picking ingredients for lunch or dinner :-)

I find this website very helpful for container gardening:

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Editor: Laura March 20, 2012 Reply

Thanks – I will check it out. It’s awesome having a salad that’s filled with freshly picked greens. They definitely do taste better!

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