Garden Update 10/7/14

I realized as we did the first of our fall seeding this past weekend, that flowers and visible fruiting were going to be at a minimum in a fall/winter garden.  So I’m reworking my categories to keep you up to date on the activities in the garden.

NEW BEGINNINGS:

1) red beet 2) chioggia beet 3) golden beet 4) purple carrots 5) neon swiss chard 6) fire and ice radish 7) watermelon radish

1) red beet  2) chioggia beet  3) golden beet  4) purple carrots  5) neon swiss chard  6) fire & ice radish  7) watermelon radish

Our major seeding went well; seedlings are popping up all over the garden.  I just love how seedlings give you just a glimpse of the colors to come.  Especially obvious is #5 above, where you can see both a yellow and hot pink swiss chard coming up next to each other.  All of these came up so much faster than when I planted them in the spring.  We saw fire & ice radish seedlings in 2 days.  The power of warm soil at work.  The down side is that bugs are already trying to chew on then.  But I’m still trying to make it through my first year without chemicals or protection just to get a taste of what kind of problems would raise their head in my garden. It’ll make for better plannings and preventions in years to come (I hope!).

MAGIC IN THE MIDDLE:

Learning how  things grow: left is asparagus yardlong beans and right is okra.

Learning how things grow: left is asparagus yardlong beans and right is okra.

As seedlings are new, there really aren’t any fruits to show you.  The asparagus yardlong beans have been shooting up at a rapid rate.  I had no idea how a pole bean grew.  Maybe I was imagining tendrils like peas, but these are snaking their way up the trellis by winding itself around the string.  Also, out of no where, my okra has started putting up side shoots that are producing okra.  Not sure if they should have done this sooner or if this is unusual.  But it’s working and we are living and learning from the magic in our garden.

THE UGLY:

The tomatoes are definitely barely hanging on.

The tomatoes are definitely barely hanging on.

Well the end is near for the rest of my summer crops.  The tomatoes are barely hanging on to finish ripening the last of their fruit.  I helped this out by topping off the tomatoes or removing all the growing ends so they would focus on what was there and not on growing.  The peppers are slowing down majorly as well.  Also, the okra is possibly getting a mildew.  So all in all, the summer crops are fizzling.  I’ll get them out before the end of the month and get a second bed of my fall crops growing.  I didn’t get a picture of it, but squash vine borers got into all 3 of my pumpkins despite my daily checking.  Got to figure out protecting them better for next year.  So pumpkins are going into the total failure category with corn.  Bummer.

HARVEST:

recent harvest

Things are definitely starting to slow down.  Here is what we’ve harvested in the last 2+ weeks:

  •  Green beans: 91
  • Okra: 33
  • Parsnips: 7
  • Peppers: 2 purple, 1 green, 2 orange
  • Tomatoes (pineapple): 3 ripe

Got a lot of stuff to work on for next year.  We have plans to add a bed, but we also want to work on staggering our crops better so we don’t hit such a slow spell, work on maximizing the productivity of our square foot gardens, and better pest preventions.  Oh, and preservation of food.  Better planning, productivity, prevention and preservation.  Hrm, that’s a lot.  Might need to be satisfied with only getting 1 or 2 of these things accomplished. C’est la vie!

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