The Blackberries and Blueberries are dealing with a phosphorus deficiency. After doing some soil tests, I now believe that, for the blackberries at least, it was caused by a sudden bought of cold earlier this month (in the 50s). For the blueberries it the definitely the Ph. I have to wait for the acidifier to do it’s work on that one.
Close up on Doomguys’ berries
These are both pictures of Doomguy. The reddening on the leaves is the plant saying its not getting enough phosphorus at the moment. The purpling of the berries, I’m hoping, is part of the natural cycle of the fruit maturing before becomes blue. I can’t find any indication that would show blueberries turning purple is a bad thing. Ricardo is doing the best in terms of leaf coloration. Then again, he has the fewest blueberries being made. And Serenity, having the most, is having a hard time forming her berries.
I also saw a terrifying horse fly this morning. As it turns out, male horseflies don’t eat blood or even bite. They just want some sweet delicious nectar. Regardless, I ran away right after taking this picture.
In worse news, Julia has thrips! They’re these teeny tiny — nearly imperceptible to the eye — bugs that suck on flowering plants. They’re bad bugs and are usually eaten by predatory insects like ladybugs. You wouldn’t even know they were there unless you were looking. The only reason why I was even looking was because I saw ants walking around on the stems. last year I learned that ants like to farm — protect and use — aphids because of they’re ability to suck out the sweetness from plants. So when I saw some ants waddling their way around Julia I knew something was up. Next thing I know I see this little-itty-bitty bug on the flowers. You can barely see it in the image. It’s the more defined brownish line on the lower right petal. I’ve already put neem oil all over both Julia and Nicholas, so I hope that’ll help.
Blueberries require a soil Ph of at least 6.0. What did I find mine to be? 7.5! How did that happen??? Well, I guess I do know. It was raining a lot earlier this month which can cause the soil to become more basic. This sucks. The good news is that the Blueberry Elite have faced far worse in the past. When I originally got them, my Aunt Kelly and I had a lot of trouble lowering the Ph levels in a timely fashion. That was during the colder more windy time of the 2019. Now it’s warmish Spring and the blueberries will be able to hopefully recover more quickly than last time. I’ve also added a bunch of top soil on top of the acidifier on top of the mulch already there.
This is my very first entry of my online journal. It feels very odd putting something on the internet like this. I’m actually a very private person, in regards to my online presence. I have no twitter, instagram, Facebook, YouTube, or any other kind of media account. I don’t really have a reason other than I don’t really have anything to say and I don’t really want to feel pressured into responding to my family’s posts. The reason why this has suddenly changed is because I’ve realized that I don’t really have anything to fill my day with. The Coronavirus is in full affect around the globe. People are dying. Barely anyone goes outside their homes. And it’s gotten very hard not to want to just sit down and cry at how bad the state of the world is and how I can only sit here and do nothing about it. So to distract myself from that line of thinking–this journal.
Let’s start out with what I have done today. It started out really nice. I got up and made myself food and took care of my plants. I’ll introduce them:
The Blackberry Empire. Completely isolated from the rest of the plants, they’re not very keen on being friends. The Empire is fully ready to kill any plant in their path towards yardal domination. Luckily they have been contained in a metal planter and any attempts at escape are quickly dealt with by yours truly. They await patiently for my guard to go down so they can strike against any nearby soil. Status: Contained, but full iron chlorosis imminent
The only line of defense against the Empire, Julia has taken on the task of keeping them at bay. She has fought long and hard to become worthy of the knighthood and intends to use her martial prowess to protect her king. Status: Healthy. New leaves are growing in beautifully. Flowers are in full bloom. No issues to be resolved
King Nicholas the Meyer Lemon, Ruler over the Far Side of the Yard. He didn’t ask to be thrust into leadership so early in life. He only just started making lemons! But someone has to lead the garden plants. His rule has gone without a hitch. No wars or invasions. The Bees and Wasps have come and gone with their help in pollination and pest control. Although Nicholas fears he’ll only lead his small section of the Yard to ruin, he really is a good king. Status: Fine. Same as Julia. Nothing to worry about.
Not the most ruly sort, the Hillbilly Blackberries are always ready for a fun time. They separate the Lemons and the Blueberries and honestly are just happy that no ones tried attacking them yet. They’re perfectly happy with where they are, though they sometimes wish they could show some of the other plants a good time. Status: Pretty alright. Lots of healthy growth. Some iron chlorosis.
Once a semblance of seven, they have now been whittled to only three. The Blueberry Elite are a proud family of hardworking and beautiful individuals that despise how easy the Meyer Lemons have it. The Lemons didn’t have to watch their family members dies around them as the wind dried their roots from safety. The Lemons don’t have to worry about sleeping during the winter and possibly never awaking again. They don’t have to deal with being cramped in one metal cube when some nice Terra-cotta was available. The three bitter siblings left alive are: Ricardo, Serenity, and Doomguy — whose walked through hell and returned in hopes of only to live in peace with their family. Status: Great. Full Bloom. Need bigger netting protection. Currently dealing with Ph imbalance
The Strawberry Folk by the Shade are just here to have a good time and enjoy themselves while they can. Peace and goodwill and all that. Status: Good. Need to take a closer look for pests.
Completely unruly sort with no regards for the rules. The hang out in the outer edge of the Far Side of the Yard in order to stay out of the sight of the King Nicholas’ reign. It’s unclear whether they dislike him for the way he runs the Yard or if they just don’t like the monarchy in general. Status: Healthy
The newest member of the Meyer Lemon Royalty, Esther is compassionate and ready take on any challenge that faces her. Though she isn’t as strong as her brother, she’ll always be there for Nicholas when he needs her. Status: Right as rain. Slight Nitrogen deficiency. In need of a new pot.
That’s all of the currently growing plants so far. Theres some germinating spinach, broccoli, chives, okra, peppers, and tomatoes next to the patio, but you don’t need to see pictures of dirt for that. Taking care of my plants was the entirety of my day. Now I’m writing in this journal.
I suppose the next thing I should write about is what’s been happening so far, that isn’t in regards to the pandemic. I’ve been playing A Hat in Time. A very cute and creative game that’s made me want to make my own. Alas, however, I don’t have the technological capacities to take on such a goal. That doesn’t mean I can’t still plan like I do. I’ve also finally started play Bioshock Infinite with Dad and Skylar. I think Dad likes it. The games far more cinematic than what I’ve shown him previously. I watched the Sonic the Hedgehog movie with Dad as well. It was very stupid, but made me happy all the same.
I’ve been getting an urge to begin doing art again, but where to point myself is the difficult part. I’ll try exploring that after I finish this entry. I think I’m going to make separate journals for different parts of my life. One for the day-to-day, one for gardening, and another for my artistic endeavors. I think that’s everything I want to write down for today.