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Garden highs/lows!

Well, I haven't done one of these in a while, so I'm going to allow myself TWO of each!

Garden highs first!

High #1: Butterfly bush, blooming EVERYWHERE! Even the ones I started this year from seed. The two I bought last year are kind of straggling along disappointingly, but the seed ones are lovely and fragrant, if a little sparse just yet...

High #2: Continuing with the "purple" theme, Lemon Bee Balm, aka Lemon Mint, aka monarda citriodora? Whatever you want to call it, here it is, though this shot doesn't capture at all its utterly Seussian glory. The best one has LITERALLY five tiers of flowers. I'll try to get a shot of it tomorrow. These things smell utterly awful, by the way. I know it's supposed to have a lemony smell, but to me, it just smells like mothballs. DO NOT RUB THE LEAVES! But I'm so happy I grew it anyway because they are completely absurd and just plain fun to look at in the garden.

And now, the downers...

Low #1: Some of the tomatoes in pots continue to rot at their blossom end. Here's a lovely tomato, should be ready any day now, that we'll never get a chance to eat! This is from that unknown "Teflon" variety. Never heard of it, and it looks like I'll never taste it, either. The seeds were freebies, but I have put a ton of effort into this thing and for it to keep rotting like this - argh! Frustrating! Other tomatoes in pots are coming along nicely. More pics soon.

Low #2: Okay, this is a beautiful cucumber - which I realized now we completely forgot to eat on Shabbos, but that's beside the point. The point is I noticed a few spots of mildew on the lower leaves, and the vines are nowhere near as productive as they should be. I am worried that all this WET wet WET weather is going to kill them off again.

I did spray at the time, with baking soda & milk, but a few days of rain has likely washed all potential benefits of that away. If it's dry tomorrow, I will spray again.

I read in a garden book today that if you want the taste of cucumber without all the effort of cucumber, you should just plant borage - apparently, its leaves, stems, flowers, etc all taste like cucumber. And I thought, "well, isn't that stupid?" You may as well buy cucumber-flavoured chewing gum, if all you want is the TASTE of cucumber! Honestly, I like cucumber for the experience of eating cucumber. I doubt borage, or cucumber-tasting bubble gum, can do that for me or anyone else. Not to mention the joy of poking yourself as you pick a spiky almost-ripe cucumber you grew yourself from a seed. Can borage give you that, I ask you? I think NOT.

Shabbos was mellow with the big kids away.

Went with my mother to the ladies' Shalosh Seudos - kind of a surprise because the shul bulletin they emailed out on Thursday said nothing about it. I keep thinking maybe if we paid more dues, it would be a better shul. And also, since we hardly pay anything, I have no right to complain when the office is disorganized, there are typos in the bulletin, etc.

I picked up a BAYT bulletin while I was up north yesterday, just for the pleasure of seeing one that was crisply laid out, accurate, helpful and informative. It even had a short dvar Torah! Ours is lucky if it has the shul's name spelled right. Well, maybe not quite, but still.
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