Once in a while, you don't get what you asked for. Like all these extra rainy days. "That's not what I ordered," you say. "I think that was for the other table over there, the one with the drought."The strawberries have definitely had their fill of precipitation as well as temperatures around 60 degrees F. The number of soft and rotted fruits have caught up with the number of healthy ones. As you can see in this photo, taken about a week ago, many of the berries in the shovel appear to have some sort of blight, possibly botrytis, a fungus disease that favors the current weather conditions. I've been doing my best to stay on top of this problem and dispose of the diseased berries, though I'm overdue for a visit to my plot.
Another less serious but notable item that I had not ordered was what appears to be snow peas in my sugar snap pea crop. Another MSG member had mentioned the same situation in her plot. I don't think it's fair to implicate Fedco, since I experienced the same phenomenon with a different brand of snap pea seeds last year. It's not such a big deal anyway, since only a few plants out of the whole crop produce the different variety, and the pods are healthy and fine. But it's a little unnerving to leave a pod on the vine with the expectation that it will puff out into a sugar snap, only to have it become overripe.
What causes this variation? I'm no geneticist, but I wonder if it has anything to do with what I read in this source: "The modern sugar snap pea is the progeny of a cross between a snow pea and an ususual pea that was tightly podded with thick walls." Some kind of cross-pollination issue, perhaps. I'll try to remember to post a photo of some plants in my garden, if it ever stops raining. I've only harvested a few, so far, so I'll keep them out of my latest benefits of gardening statistics.
Previous total (benefits): $29.13
5 heads Romaine at $2.49 each: $12.45
8 1/2 pints strawberries at $3.99 each: $33.92
New benefits total: $75.50
Total costs so far: $167.07
Current balance: $-91.57
I think we're near the end of the strawberries, however. I wondering if I'll be able to fill a pint container with healthy fruit when I visit the plot tomorrow.