Somewhere in my ‘to do’ list was……. go to the hardware/gardening centre (to get more shade cloth, longer bamboo stakes, more mint & parsley plants ……and so on.
This errand has now gone to the top of THE ‘TO DO’ LIST.
I inspected the tomato plants just now. It’s lovely and cool while my balcony remains in shadow each morning and my favourite time of day to check out the garden and refill the bird bath. I have got two tomatoes with sunburn – the one and only ripe one and another one which is still green.
Many leaves have been eaten by caterpillars, (but not the fruit), and many branches now broken in the strong gusty winds and storms Melbourne’s had. And I am writing to the author of one of my herbals to tell them Sage & Rosemary plants DO NOT deter Cabbage Moth Caterpillars 😀
The bundles of larger tomatoes seem to hang on the lowest flimsiest branches. It was only 2 days ago that I had one blushing tomato (besides the burnt red one) and now……………I’ve got about 8.
I only had some short bamboo stakes left over from last Summer and they were totally useless in our recent storms and gale force winds.
It’s amazing how quickly Tomatoes ripen once the first fruit changes colour.
I’ve just put the last couple of metres of shade cloth I had over the tomato fruit as best I could (in preparation for this afternoon’s sun). I stapled it in a ‘droopy sun hat’ shape, but I really need about 4 metres and some much taller bamboo stakes to create a little ‘house’ for the plants and fruit until they all ripen.
So my ‘to do’ list has been re-arranged. I’ll have to go out today.
Being extremely fair, I’ve never liked the hot summers in Melbourne anyway, and after a very brief attempt to get a bit of colour on my arms & legs in my twenties, I gave up and accepted that I would have snowy white skin for the rest of my life.
Even aged 19-20, I wore mascara every day to coat my white eyelashes and lashings of make-up to cover my deathly pale face, so you can well imagine how quickly I get sunburnt now I’m old(er).
You’ve only got to look at the first sunburn in the summer after I took up photography as a hobby to appreciate my reticence about going outdoors in the summer.
So just when you fellow Melburnians are thinking what a lovely sunny day for a walk, I am double-checking the actual temperature and timing of the highest UV rays.
My theory is that there’s a hole in the ozone layer over Melbourne (and we have the worst number/cases of skin cancer in the world anyway). That ‘hole’ allows the very worst intensity of the sun’s rays to hit my apartment in the western suburbs of Melbourne.
The Ozone hole used to be over my old apartment next to the Royal Botanic Gardens for some 20+ years but when I moved house, the HOLE decided to follow me 😀
Did I mention Spring and Autumn are my favourite times of the year 🙂