Right now it’s weeding time. The field is almost completely planted so the focus is on maintaining and nurturing everything to grow big and beautiful.
This is the part of the season where you have to remind yourself that as boring as weeding is, it is important and needs to get done. By remove the pesky weeds you are removing competition for your vegetables. Weeds will take up space, suck up water and nutrients, and take the sunlight away from your crops. Tomatoes and popcorn will do their best to survive surrounded by weeds and will even produce a harvestable crop but they won’t thrive. So I’m out in the field with my wheel hoe and hula hoe removing the weeds the best I can.
During this time of year it can feel like weeding is a never-ending battle because new weeds just continue to spring up. I plant and space my crops in a particular way so that once they get bigger, they create a canopy that will shade the soil. This reduces the amount of weeds that grow and the ones that do, don’t amount too much. So the regular weeding continues until the popcorn is thigh high, the pumpkin vines cover all the bare ground, the beans plant stand, and the tomatoes become as tall as me. Then the focus will shift to non-stop harvesting.