second sunflower really, but the first one was tiny and never fully opened. this one is medium-sized and has two more buds on the stalk waiting to open.
i found a site that may or may not offer free sunflower seeds. it’s part of an urban bee population study--they ask that you plant a certain variety of sunflower (“lemon queen” annual) and record data about the bees that visit. i can’t find any sort of order form where you request the seeds, so i think maybe they’re done sending them out this season (it is pretty late) but maybe they’ll offer them again next spring. also, i saw one page that mentioned something about collecting data from other plants, like bee balm and lavender. i’ll participate in the study without the sunflowers if i can figure out how.
it looks so exotic and tropical, like it doesn’t even belong here in boise. and really it doesn’t. (there are so many native flower gardeners around here who probably consider this an abomination...sorry.)
the bell pepper flowers are looking promising, though. there’s one very healthy plant that has over a dozen buds, two open flowers and one tiny pepper. i wonder how many peppers one plant can produce/support at a time.
i waded around in the creek today and peeked under the fence...the neighbors' raspberries are ripe, which means i should expect ripe fruit on the volunteers around this time next year.
i found what i thought was a ripe tomato--a white currant, the first plant that flowered and one of the first to set fruit. in the bright sunlight i swear it looked ripe, but in the photos it’s obviously still mostly green...anyway, i ate it, and it tasted a bit bitter. nice texture, though.
i also ate a prickly caterpillar today. the taste was mild and reminiscent of grass, and the texture...like chewing on toothbrush bristles.
at the start of the season i had every intention of weighing every morsel my garden produced this year, recording it all meticulously...this is the first time i’ve bothered. a pound of zucchini...
i cooked them the same way i cooked the others, olive oil/S&P sauté, only this time i cooked the beans a few minutes before adding the squash. the squash turned out the same and the beans really benefitted from the extra cooking time.
another handful of peas yesterday, too. i thought i planted all edible-pod types, but the pods are a little tough, so i shelled them, munching as i went.
i’ve had good luck with asexual propagation this year. the chocolate mint runners i potted have developed into plants that look even healthier than their parent. that experiment inspired me to try growing basil from cuttings:
i accidentally knocked a branch off of one of my cherry tomato plants, so i stuck it in some water. not only are roots forming along the stem, it’s even growing baby tomatoes thanks to the liquid kelp i added. at first i had it in plain water and the blossoms dropped, but when i added kelp it set fruit.