O.K I better back down a bit. As always, nothing is so black and white. There are parasitic wasps that do great things to control white butterfly. Also the common wasp has a carniverous diet for many months which must take care of a few things. It develops a craving for sweetness late in the Summer. That's why they only spoil the picnic towards the end of the holidays.
Anyway, having twisted arms in the past to get a hand down at the apiary on the odd occasion, I was bowled over by the interest and aptitude. He is a boy of surprising talents. Well done Johnny.
These are dwarf butterbeans dangling on the wire like chooks, all hung out to dry. The seed went in on the 29th October, when I was making comprehensive notes in the gardening diary. Post Christmas and January draw a blank but it looks like we were eating them by February. That's about 90 days from seed to harvest. I left the rest for seed which is what we can see here.
I've had bean plants suddenly wilt and die off in the past, especially dwarf beans and just thought it was something they were prone to; perhaps a fungal infection. I don't know why I never thought of the humble grass grub that I know so well. Sure enough, there was a plump one still in the ground. I think they must come in with the compost and they really like beans and lettuce. Nothing else seems to be affected so drastically.
From one small insect to another, whitefly on the courgettes. I had decided from the brown leaves, dried out to a crisp, that the plants didn't like too much full sun. Wrong. They love the heat but it's the whitefly that drains all their nutrients like a vampire. Kay Baxter (Koanga Gardens) says whitefly, at its root is a nutritional problem ie. 'there are some quite common, specific relationships between pests and diseases and certain soil imbalances'. In this case then, excess nitrates in the plant tissue and/or a molybedenum deficiency. Winter would be a good time to research this further and decide what it means for the gardener and what action is required.
It now being Autumn, let's put that aside and admire Bill. Every garden needs one. The sunflowers are inside because the summer was shaping up so lousy and I thought they'd die outside. Corn on the left will be ready in about 2 weeks. Corn outside has come to nought. It did turn out to be a lousy summer. Hopes are high for this crop here.