A quick garden update

Things have been crazy around here, what with the start of school, my birthday last Monday, the girl’s birthday today and a generally insanely busy work period. We actually did a pretty good job preparing for the start of the school year for a change, and my job was recently re-classified as non-exempt from overtime rules, so it hasn’t been too bad here, but my writing time and energy have definitely slipped. All of this is my quick explanation for my lack of posting, but the really important thing I need to get up here today is this: we did some fall planting in the garden! As usual, when I say we did some planting, I mean that Marsha planted things while I followed her around chatting enthusiastically about new plants and bugging her about when we get to plant more spinach.*

Here is what we got planted this week, pretty much all of which I am super excited about:

  • Leeks
  • Siberian dwarf kale
  • Turnips
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Basil
  • Radishes
  • Dill

I still have a few carrots from the spring planting. I was going to try to pull them all out so that we could replant the whole section, but I didn’t want to be out of carrots yet. We have really been enjoying using freshly picked carrots in our meals, so I didn’t want to be totally out until the new ones start coming up. The beets are long gone, though, and all my dill has gone to seed and the seeds have been harvested, so I will be glad to get more of those. I hope that the leeks take–this is our first time planting them, and I love leeks, so I am hoping for a lot of them.

I have a couple of buttnernut squash out there that are nearly ready for picking, so that is exciting, too. There are a few tomatoes coming, and they are on the plant that the squirrels and rabbits have mostly left alone. I may pick the biggest of those tomorrow and make fried green tomatoes to go with dinner. The sweet potatoes we planted from a box from Costco that didn’t get eaten quickly enough have produced some very robust looking plants, so I have high hopes there. The cabbages are finally starting to look like heads of cabbage rather than a few large leaves fanning out, so that is cool, but my Brussels sprouts are obviously being eaten by something, :-(. There is still quite a bit of Italian kale, some other kind of kale that is not Italian or Siberian, and chard, too. On the chard front, I learned something new this week–apparently raw chard burns my mouth like acid. Not fun at all, and it takes forever for it to stop hurting. No more raw chard for me.

This year I have actually gotten quite a bit more produce from my garden, except for the tomatoes. I have really been able to cut back on purchasing vegetables elsewhere, which is nice. This week, I had my first canning adventure, successfully making pickled jalapenos! The peppers actually came from my neighbors garden, because my pepper plants have only recently started to produce anything, but he had more than he oculd handle. So, he gave me the peppers and I pickled and canned them. I am beyond excited about that, and suddenly filled with confidence in my ability to can all the things! I may be doing fruits from a pick your own place soon.

* Marsha says two more weeks for the spinach planting, although we may try to put a few early seeds out this week.

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