21 August 2013

La Belle's Hobby Farm: Summer's Last Hurrah and Fall's Greens



A garden is always a series of losses set against a few triumphs, like life itself. 
~ May Sarton

In August, I’m participating in BlogHer’s Blogging Challenge.  The theme this month is: Hot.


T
he garden looks like a crime scene: corn stalks litter the ground, their tiny husks unripe and shriveled. Verdict? Death by strangulation.

Damn psychopathic cucs.

At least the tomatoes proved too strong for the green creepies ~ my harvest this year is more than last year’s, but not quite enough to give away or can.  But they’re definitely producing enough to savor in these last weeks of summer. 

As for the cucumbers, the murderous ones are beginning to turn yellow, but still have blooms that should grow into fruit.  Not sure what that is about or why they’re dying.  Must be the guilt of the corn murder.  Justice prevails in the veggie world!   

Meanwhile, the volunteer cucumber plant near the patio keeps climbing the trellis, and popping out cucs like a mini green factory.  They are the prickliest cucs I’ve ever seen, and the sweetest I’ve tasted.  Again, not enough to pickle, but more than enough to juice or slice, salt, and eat.  All in all, I can say that this year’s garden was a triumph.

Although it didn’t produce any funny stories like last year.  My garden spider extends her apologies to Dan Arnold.

An Autumn Harvest
In another week, it will be September.  Already, I’m eying the condemned cucs and plotting to pull them up.  Kale, spinach, cabbage seeds have been purchased and will be going in soon for my fall planting/harvest.  I would have planted them already, but the soil has been too wet.  As soon as it dries out a little, in they will go.  Night temps aren’t quite cool enough yet, but I’m afraid if I don’t plant them, my fall harvest will turn into a winter one.

Which might not be a bad thing.  And these guys are hardy and like cool temps.  And I can still remember the taste of that Portuguese Kale Soup I made ~ great for cooler autumnal nights.

The Gardener's Journal of Sins and Hopes
While the mistakes I’ve made are still fresh in my mind (lovely), I’m updating my garden planner, making notes on sun exposure, amount of shade, and creating a winter reading list.  By next Spring, I want to have a new plan for the garden, complete with companion planting, extension of the existing bed, and the creation of at least two new beds ~ one which house cucumber plants. And only cucumber plants.

No more greenie crime scenes.

But the time for the  major garden planning is reserved for those cold winter nights when it seems like Death has won and the earth will never be green again.  December and January are the months for ordering seed catalogs, cleaning out the brush, and staking out new beds, laying down newspaper, clippings, and composted hay.

For now, I’ll enjoy the ample harvest of basil, tomatoes, arugula, and cilantro (nothing kills those two!!) and watch the shadows lengthen earlier and earlier.

Oremus pro invicem,
~ Mikaela

Have you already planted your fall/winter greens?  Now is the time to do it!  For more information, visit The Tasteful Garden, one of my sources for gardening advice.

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