It has been a HOT May in Middle Georgia, which is awesome for our heat-loving plants. What is not awesome is the horrible lack of rain - we haven't had one drop in over 3 weeks. We've tried our best to conserve water (and our utilities bill) by extending time between waterings. The compost, mulch, and leaves serve double duty by holding moisture in the soil and feeding the plants.
So far, it's been too hot (or I've been too lazy) to do any "official" fertilizing, pest or weed control. But I have been using some DIY mixtures which seem to do the trick for the most part.
For weed control:
1 part white vinegar to 1 part water. Shake it up in a spray bottle. Be careful you're only spraying weeds - it WILL kill your flowers and veggies. This works wonders!
For bug control:
1 tsp. dish washing liquid soap to 2 quarts water. Shake up in a spray bottle and spray both the top and underneath sides of the plant leaves. It works well for tomatoes, eggplant and peppers, but test on one leaf for more delicate plants. I recommend using this in the evening - it can scorch on leaves if it dries in direct sunlight.
1/2 Tb. Epsom salt to 2 quarts water. Shake up in a spray bottle or mix together in watering can. Pour at the base of young tomato plants. Spray on blooms of tomatoes and peppers.
With these simple management techniques, we have a heck of a garden this year!
Tomato (these are the ones I started from seed!)
Zinnias (finally about to bloom!)