Posted by: oceannah | July 9, 2012

Volunteerism is alive and well here on the homestead

There’s been talk about volunteer crops springing up hither and yon and I thought I’d add my few cents worth to the fray.  While it is certainly true that I coddle and coax a fair number of vegetables into existence, there are some plants that demand zero attention, and I don’t mean just plantain or crab grass 😉

The cast of characters afoot yesterday include:

Rudbeckia, aka black eyed susan

oxeye daisy, relative to the Chrysanthemum

ever facing Helios…sunflower, barnyard shuffle

You know ’em you love ’em, black raspberries free for the taking

Dill patiently awaiting the cucumbers

Some volunteers are not quite as welcome as others

squash beetles munching on my sweet mama’s, dang

jewel or weed, you decide the very voluptuous spotted-touch-me-not

aka: jewelweed

well, no, I did not manage a volunteer cauliflower…see those black spots?

that’s frass…an odd euphemism for caterpillar poop.  Cabbage moths have

arrived, very un-welcome volunteers very hard at work 😦

Mostly I welcome the volunteers.  In some cases not so much.  Happy Monday, let the new week begin.



  1. Beautiful beautiful pictures!

    • Thanks CT…glad you like them.

  2. Who knew that caterpillar poop had its own name? My daughter will think I’m awesome when I tell her about it..

    Got to love volunteers in the garden (except of the wormy variety).

    • Funny huh? I could def. do w/out the wormy/crawling variety of volunteers.

  3. Your flower pics really take me back… *sigh* My Mom loved the wild bouquets we’d pick for her this time of year…
    One thing about those cabbage worms – they’re ever so obliging about coming out right at dusk so you can squish the little buggers (I cheat a bit ’cause they’re a lot easier to see on red cabbage eh? ; )
    I am ever so envious of your ability to grow Touch-Me-Nots. We don’t have a moist enough spot for them, unfortunately. At least, I don’t think we do… Will they grow where Red Alder thrive? Think I might have gotten some hitch hiking seedlings from FarmGal this spring (at least I’m hoping that’s what they are: ) as it works so well for Barber’s Itch(Stinging Nettle) and Poison Ivy.
    Thanks for the gloriously fresh photos: )

    • There’s been several squishing fests here. For what ever reason, the red cabbages are decidedly not being hit. But most a an entire kale plant is consumed, rats.

  4. Nice set up.
    Re: Volunteers, I’ll never buy or purposely plant another seed of: Arugula (it grows itself better than I can cultivate it) Flat Leaf Parsley (seed it once, weed it forever), Cilantro, New Zealand Spinach, Tommie Toe tomatoes

    • I hear you on the parsley and arugala…if only the flea beetles would give it a rest…

      • If you have mint nearby they don’t notice the parsley. (Well, that’s my unproven theory based on the mint’s FB popularity. )

      • I can’t believe I forgot Thai basil- the ultimate in self seeding perfect plants year after year. And as noted above it is covered with beautiful purple blooms from July to frost and is covered up with bees and butterflies

  5. I was just reading about black eyed susan and daisy and of course dill, all drive beneficial insects to your garden! Lucky you! Next year I will have more of these. I had no idea what I was doing this year.

    • Don’t forget herbs as pollinator/beneficial bug magnets too (and they would LOVE your climate!: )

  6. We have some bugs on our ivy but have no clue what kind they are or what to do. Very frustrating! I will have to do some research to figure this out. Reading about your experience and knowledge helps.

  7. Frass…hmmm – don’t tell them about my island. 🙂 Nor that little beetle who decided to homestead on the squash. So far I’ve been okay, but wait until the warmer weather (finally!) brings out the bad guys.

    What do you do about the insects? How do you manage that?

  8. Love the black raspberries.

    • yum, me too. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  9. Frass! I’ve wondered what that was, and I’ve wondered what the word meant – now I know both, thanks to you. Yay for volunteers!

    • Yeah, at first it sounds like a made up word right? Volunteers totally rock.

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