Tuesday, May 24, 2011

An Artichoke on a Typical Spring Day

This artichoke plant hosts an entire micro-ecosystem.  Ants have been bringing aphids to feed on its leaves and stem. The ants are like aphid ranchers, bringing the aphids to juicy plants and then feeding on the "honeydew" that the aphids produce. The ladybugs come to eat the aphids. Since there are so many ladybugs there and such good food, the artichoke has also become a popular spot to meet other ladybugs, have a few drinks, and see what happens...

Interestingly, the other artichoke plants in the row have very few aphids or ladybugs on them. I don't know why. I do know that we harvested our first artichokes yesterday, and they were delicious!

We started another round of greenhouse plantings. These are pumpkins (almost ready to transplant) and a variety of herbs.

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