I have not written for a while because I was having some trouble with my outdoor and indoor gardens. Things that only time will teach you for sure. I read a good deal about FL gardening online, but nothing really teaches you like experience.
Pretty much all of June was rain. So the plants grew well, but they did not produce much. My theory, the rains would come during the day when the pollinators should be out. The rainy conditions also made conditions too difficult for proper fertilization and production.
Once the rains finally let up, I had great growth for a little bit. But, the temperatures also began to climb. I had read that the plants have a hard time with fertility and fruiting when the temperatures get into the 90s. This seemed to have proven true for this garden.
By the end of July, my eggplant and tomatoes outside got spider mites and those have proven difficult to control. My squash and cucumbers were taken over and demolished by Melon Moths.
Take a ways:
– Too much rain is terrible and leads to low production
– Too hot and a lot of plants will not produce
– It is unbelievably hard to control Melon Moth in the hot part of summer (starting to cool down and they are not as big of a problem).
– While your pepper plants will not produce during the hot month, if they can make it through the hot months, they will start to produce again in the fall when temps go down. Mine did get infested with whitefly though during the hot months. My peppers had a really really tough time with sun scorch. Almost 100% of the peppers that I got had some sun scorch damage
– I cut back my eggplant to get ride of the spider mite damage, the plants have come back as the temps drop. Seems like the mites are coming back though.
My indoor garden has been fun, and I have learned a lot. I have rearranged it many times, and finally, think I have a pretty good setup going.
– I have a few pepper plants that look great, but they are VERY small for their age.
– Also, I think it takes longer for the peppers to ripen inside. Currently taking notes on that.
– My tomatillo has grown well, but its companion plant died while I was on a trip. I have read I need two plants so they can cross-pollinate. Since my tomatillo is blooming, I am a little bummed.
– Beans and peas do excellent inside, but the beans are susceptible to spider mites (They have proven to be hard to get rid of but are easier to control inside)
– Basil, kale, and cilantro do well inside.
– Cucumbers will also grow inside, but you need to have them in a really easy to access location to hand pollinate the plant.