Challenging year for the garden. TYLCV on many of the tomatoes, but getting ripe tomatoes already (before July 4th!) from the Sweet 100 cherry, Viva Italia and Homestead tomato plants. As I have learned through talking with the extension office here, corresponding by email with the agricultural specialists at NC State, and researching on the web, TYLCV is no picnic. I have ordered resistant variety seeds to trial this summer, and have taken suckers from the healthy plant to start new ones to fill in as I pull out the infected plants. Luckily the virus does not affect fruits already on the plants or the seeds, for a couple are rare to find heirlooms that I do not want to lose seed for! The squash, zucchini and eggplants are producing nicely as are the cukes- already have several pints of pickles and chow chow put away - if I can keep the pickles from my youngest son, that is! Starting to see squash bugs, Japanese beetles and still battling the whiteflies that brought the Tomato Yellow Leaf Curl in from a greenhouse, and am still trying to stay organic. So far the homemade soapy spray using Pantene Pro-V Clarifying Shampoo and water seems to be keeping the whitefly population in check but not eradicating them, so I will try Neem spray interspersed and see if that will take care of the little suckers.
Still with all the tribulations, there is nothing like going out and picking some fresh food that you have grown yourself for dinner!
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