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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hasse Harvest

Fall is in the air... literally... in the form of frost that is.  Yesterday morning we woke up to a blanket of the frigid white stuff.  How many places get to say that they have a first frost date of September 6???  Lucky, lucky us!!!  Amazing that we can have a garden at all really.  Anyway, not wanting to take any chances, I spent part of the day harvesting what was left of our garden goodies: chives, rosemary, zucchini, cucumbers, celery, corn, parsnips, tomatoes, peppers, green onions, and carrots (what was left of them after the coyotes got to them anyway... and yes, I said coyotes).  Now all that is left in the ground is the potatoes... but I think that we'll need to use a truck to harvest those! 

It was an interesting gardening year for me... as is the case every year, a lot of lessons were learned. 

  1. For instance, never, never plant sunflowers in the middle of the garden, because (duh) they grow really, really tall and begin to shade the plants on the east side of them.
  2. Heirloom seeds are the way to go.  I planted two different kinds of peas, some heirloom seeds that I received as a gift and then some cheap seeds that I got from the grocery store.  The difference in the peas was almost indescribable!  We literally threw out almost every one of the cheap pea variety as they were either tasteless or bitter.  Mind you they were a nice size, but who cares about size if they aren't even edible.  Lesson learned... seed catalogues here I come!
  3. I had two garden sites this year, my main garden in the yard and also my container garden on the deck.  This worked well as I planted the things that I need for salads in my containers on the deck, making a sort of 'salad garden'.  It sounds silly, but this encouraged me to keep on eye on things (especially the tomatoes and the lettuce) to make sure that I stayed on top of it. 
  4. I planted my corn in a 4 foot by 4 foot square instead of a row.  The corn seemed to like this and it was delicious this year.  4 by 4 isn't big enough though, and I would double it for next year.
  5. I planted three zucchini plants this year and tried my very best to stay on top of the fertile-myrtle, however, as you can see in the pictures, it still managed to produce several children-sized squashes.  Oh, and you can't even freecycle those things away right now.  Zucchini anyone?
  6. Peppers are not worth the effort unless you have a green house.  'Nuff said.
  7. I mentioned the sunflowers already, and other than their misplacement in the garden, they were wonderful.  They will get to stay in my garden plan for next year, as well as some additional flower varieties as they make wonderful gifts to friends/family (especially when you aren't in the practice of buying material goods!)

Well, that's all for now.  If I come up with any brilliant recipes to use up some of this stuff than I will be sure to share... my brain is bubbling with thoughts of zucchini as I write!



PS, thanks to those who voted on the 'should I start over issue'... I was somewhat surprised by the results... you guys are too easy on me!  I thought about it after I posted the issue, and really the point is somewhat moot b/c I am planning on trying to sustain this lifestyle indefinitely... But for now, I guess that I should just focusing on making it to the end of the year without any more cheats!!!

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