Monday, July 27, 2009

Again, more procrastination. I haven't posted since May! OK, I haven't had a lot of downtime either, there's been a special project at work and housework to deal with. At least I'm almost finished my quilt, and my garden is feeding me something in each night's dinner.

Speaking of gardening, and the issue of disappearing bees, I have to engage in daily squash sex! Unfortunately, it's not as kinky as you might think. The squash family (which includes melons and cucumbers) have different gendered flowers. There are a lot more males, which are edible on their own, and there are females, which have a pod attached.

Here's an out of focus female cucumber:
The spiky pod is at the bottom, and the flower is just waiting for a bee to come along with pollen from the male flower.

A more focused butternut squash flower, with a focus on the stamen, the pod is underneath. To a bee, this is X-rated and lusty! Come and get the nectar!

The male of the zucchini. Bad timing on the part of the butternut vine - no males blooming that morning. I had to make a hybrid frankensquash! This is the kind of genetically engineered food I wholeheartedly support. The downside of plants reproducing this way is that if the female isn't fertilized, the pod just withers away. That's the real danger of the bee population imploding. Of course, as an individual gardener, I can walk in my backyard and fertilize by hand, large farmers can't. Then again, they can afford to pay beekeepers to bring their hives to the fields and let their girls party!

... and now, hot squash sex!

That individual hybrid pod is actually growing nicely - I can't wait to see how it tastes.

The non-hybrid zucchini and cukes are getting really prolific as well. One tip with vegetables is to pick them often, then the plant will keep producing more.

Politics: no health reform until fall - I hope the right wing gets it wrong and the wait will just make people want it more. Even with my employer-sponsored plan, there must be a ton of administrative costs, because my regular doctor dropped them. On top of that, I had to pay $40 for three pills of antibiotics because there was no generic. So much for "government will ration healthcare" when I'm getting rationed by the "free" market. I can only hope that my veggies will keep me healthy.