After being able to plant crops for fall in August this year — a first for me because of the rainy weather —- I ended up loosing a lot because drought conditions that arrived late and prevailed during September. The good news is just as many things made it. Now I have lettuce and various greens in 5 stages of growth because of 5 succession plantings.
I’ve been trapping rodents intensively for the past few weeks and think I have — at least temporarily —- removed them from rows with my winter/spring crops.
Some leaves are in the garden, but most still need to be raked.
I planted Lacy Phacelia (purple tansy) as a cover crop in various beds in August. After it winter kills, I’ll add leaves and straw on top.
Even my grow bags have a cover crop in them. (Alfalfa.) I’ll cut it very close in late February or early March and lay the biomass on top of the root stubble. Then I’ll add thick layers of leaves and straw on top of that. Should make a very nice home for some warm weather crops next May.
The forecast called for high winds and night time temperature in the 20s off and on throughout the month starting last night. So I knew I’d loose some things if we didn’t get the hoop tunnels up.
Bill spent about 3 hours Friday afternoon placing and securing the hoops for 5 hoop tunnels. While he was doing that, I picked enough lettuce to last for more than a week. Also various greens.
We both worked 3 hours on Saturday to cover the hoops with greenhouse plastic and secure it with clips and bricks to weight the sides and ends. When I checked Sunday morning – everything had made it through just fine in spite of the high winds.
I still have some things uncovered that will probably do just fine through winter: chard, tatsoi, russian kale, mache, cress, cutting celery, some cultivated dandelions, and few other hardy greens that I don’t know the names of. Also have a few beets under the cover of straw.
Still Eating Fresh
- I’ll be out of red peppers tomorrow.
- Have enough green peppers to get through another couple of weeks.
- Should make it into the first or second week of December with fresh tomatoes. (Usually I get through Christmas or longer with fresh tomatoes.)
- Still have radishes under the hoop tunnels.
- Picked 8 beautiful Hakurei turnips Friday. Have that many more growing under the cover of the hoop tunnels.
I’m out of onions except for the spring onions planted this fall. (Usually I get through until January with fresh onions)
More to Plant
I started several more varieties of lettuce, some spinach, onions and beets a couple of weeks ago in jug bottoms rather than flats. I put those under the hoop tunnels this morning. When we get a warm day or two I’ll transplant in beds with the protection of the tunnels. This planting and the previous planting probably won’t do a lot of growing until early spring. Then they’ll grow quickly and tide me over while I’m waiting for other spring plantings to mature and the August plantings are about finished.
Plastic Left Off when Conditions are Good
Expecting rain Tuesday and temperatures in the 40s. I’ll roll back the plastic on the tunnels and let the rain get into the beds. Then will cover again for the freezing temperatures. When it’s nice weather and moderate at night I’ll leave the plastic off.
Hope your enjoying a fresh-from-the-garden salad on Thanksgiving along with other fresh or preserved bounties from the summer and fall. Happy Thanksgiving!
Organic Gardening is easy, effective, efficient — and it’s a lot healthier.
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