Monday, June 14, 2010

The Battle for the Broccoli

Back in mid-March, I planted broccoli seeds. I had high hopes. But I'd never grown a brassica before, so I also knew it was kind of a crap shoot.

Broccoli seeds

The seedlings were so sweet.

Broccoli seedlings

Then, we had a heat spell in early April, and I accidentally left the seedlings outside. Oops. We had some heat damage, and I was thiiiiiis close to giving up on my poor pathetic broccoli.

They went into the ground looking sad and pathetic.


But suddenly... they found the will to live! They began to grow! Oh, happy day!

Perking up broccoli

And then... came the cabbage worms. At least, I'm pretty sure that's what they are. Oh man, these things are voracious. When I first found them, there were fat pale green caterpillars on the underside of all the leaves, plus lots of tiny ones and eggs. I carefully scraped each leaf of each plant.

Cabbage worms on broccoli leaves

And now that I know the danger, I'm out there every day, scraping off eggs and tiny worms.

Tiny cabbage worms

And still they come and feast. Buggers.

Leave some broccoli for me, dang cabbage worms!

Munched broccoli leaves

Cabbage worm damage on broccoli

And while I am highly annoyed at these little pests, they have given me an opportunity. An opportunity to appreciate my food all the more.

It's hard work bringing food from seed to table. We are dealing with the natural world here, where every living thing is a food source for something else.

But can you imagine? If these plants survive long enough to actually produce edible broccoli? If I am able to put broccoli from these very plants on my table? Oh my... What a day that will be.

Meanwhile, if you're looking for me, I'll be out here fighting the good fight.

1 comment:

  1. Keep up the good fight! That broccoli will taste all the sweeter!