I have not had to take any action to control insects yet. Any loss has been manageable. The latest challenge has been all this rain. I had to pull most of my lettuce due to rot. I was able to salvage most for a salad though. My kale on the other hand is thriving. The squash seems to be spreading out and I have hope for at least a couple zuccini soon. The tomatos seem to be growing tall and blossoming. The one that was prestarted and is potted has several tomatoes. I Enjoyed one that had rippened and sampled a couple more green for frying. Hopefully, we will get enough sun to ripen the others. The strawberries are sending runners. I am concidering replanting them in a seprate bed this fall. I plan to disasemble this planter for winter storage. This year is about learning.
This morning I woke up determined to harvest some violas for pressing. Saddly when I went outside i noticed that they had been munched on. all the flowers has bites out of the petals. It is a new developement, but has me concerned that they might attack my garden next. I can just imagine all of my salad greens riddled with holes. I dead headed the violas to encourage a new crop of blossoms, but need to deal with this pest. After some research, I feel it is likely a cutter worm that feeds at night. I plan to pick off any I find at night, but I do work nights so I need another solution as well. I do have a insecticidal spray, but don't want to harm any potential bees or friendly insects. I have tried to initiate companion planting to minimize garden pests. I plan to make a tobacco, biodegradable dish soap, and water solution or tea. I plan to use J.R. Watkins brand dish soap. If that doesn't work then I will try Dipel before resorting to something stronger. While tobacco is not considered organic, it is preferred to a petrolium based product that does not differentiate between pests and helpers.
What better way to celebrate Memorial Day than to spend it with family at Backbone State Park. Backbone is a family favorite. My grandfather worked there during FDR's Reforrestation Relief Act. Civilian Concervation Corps employed 250,000 young men between the ages of 18-25. These men worked at reforrestation, road construction, and developing national parks. The CCC Museum is a must see.

Aside from the history both familial and national, Backbone is a truley beautiful place. My grandparents used to take us camping there when I was young. I remember fishing with Grandpa and Grandma frying up the best fish I had ever tried. They had an onsite fish hatchery at the time, that was relocated nearby. When we have time we like to visit and feed the fish. The cold fresh springs run through the park. The kids always love to splash around, wether you want them to or not. The cliffs, caves, and paths are also fun to explore. Although in some areas you need to take caution.

Backbone has been a place where memories to be made and it continues to be. Just ask my sisters about the night the raccoons invade one of our tents, or my mother about the climber that fell and needed first aid, or my son about his impromptu graduation party.