Trouble in Paradise?

The garden is getting the better of me lately, especially the container plants, none of which seem happy at all.

The cucumber plant, which once showed great promise to produce the gherkin glut of my dreams, seems only produce tiny hints of cucumbers, which wither and die before becoming anything useful.

Cucumber trouble

Cucumber trouble

Meanwhile, the pumpkin vines are withering away, leaving me with cute little gourds for Halloween, but nothing I can turn into a pumpkin pie.

My pumpkin vines are dying

And what is with the sage, which was once so full of life, but has now been reduced to a few droopy leaves?

Alas, sage

All of my container plants seem stricken by yellowed leaves and, at best, lacklustre produce. Such is not the case in the raised bed, where the tomatoes are thriving and the peppers are going strong.

Lots of tomatoes

There have been a few faint glimmers of hope from the containers, largely of the pepper variety. These jalapenos, though oddly stunted, still made for a delicious sweet heat when roasted whole with a bunch of aubergine, courgette, garlic and tomato.

Chili harvest

And what is this? A strawberry hanging on for dear life?

Strawberry hanger-on

A jar of homemade pickles to any kind soul who can explain to me my yellow leaves and shrivelled cucumbers. Anyone?

4 thoughts on “Trouble in Paradise?

  1. Nome

    Maybe this is too obvious, but… are you feeding the plants? Soil in containers can run out of nutrients fairly fast, and gets dry very quickly too, so you need to really stay on top of watering and feeding for best plant health. The withered cucumbers… if it's not lack of water it could perhaps be lack of pollination. Maybe you could try doing the rounds with a paintbrush if there are still any flowers.

    The jalapenos look fab, even if they are small. Mine haven't turned red – they've gone black instead! I don't get it.

  2. Monica

    Not too obvious… I have been feeding my plants, but perhaps not enough? I've been following the instructions on the container – once every two weeks. But that really doesn't seem like much, does it?

    Don't despair about the black jalapenos – my turned black and THEN turned red. Though my preferred jalapeno is GREEN, before they fully ripen. They are the best jalap for Mexican food. But the red ones have their place, too, in more mediterranean type dishes and such.

    Your pickling adventures are making me think about pickling my jalapenos… alas, if only I could do the same with my cucumbers!

  3. Alison

    Sadly yours are doing better than mine, the weather just didnt' cooperate to give me a nice garden this year, things are just starting to ripen and now it's not getting much above 60 so boooooo. We didn't get anything above 75 until mid july but mostly we had days in the 60s 🙁 The joys of gardening last year a bumper crop this year half my plants drowned with the constant rain in May and June.

    The jalapenos look better than mine they are barely starting 😛

  4. Monica

    Thank you for the sympathy, Alison. Weather – what can you do, right? I'm sure the UK's sub-med temperatures are not helping matters. Rain. Drowning. So sad. I suspect I'll have to deal with that soon enough…


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