Thursday, October 15, 2009

October 15, 2009

Well, life sure goes fast when you're busy.  I haven't had time to garden much since late summer.  As a result, when my site came back up, I had little to talk about.  Of course I feel bad because there are tons of you that enjoy reading about my garden adventures and antics.  Well this year was more of the later. 

I never got around to harvesting my garlic.  It got so bad that after I finally ripped the weeds out that permiate that bed, I found whole heads of garlic forming roots.  Here's where the adventure comes in. I left them right where they were.  It was nearly October and that's when you're supposed to plant cloves.  We'll see if I get garlic growing next year.  Maybe next June I'll be able to convince my brother to help me harvest and dry them.  I really like seeing it done before I try something intricate like that.  Besides, if someone is helping me in the garden, I am more compelled to actually get things done. 

Yep, it seems this year I became a lazy gardener.  My corn was a bust, partly due to severe lack of production from the six stalks, but also because I was late to harvest it again.  This year it wasn't enough to give away to the Sandy's chickens and goats.

My cantaloupe was a bust also, though mostly I blame it on just not being able to grow cantaloupe here.  The worst part is that I still haven't emptied the Self Watering Container (any of them for that matter).  Again, the laziness.  Sure I'm busy, but most weekends when I have time I have no energy to go out and man-handle 60 plus pounds of SWC.  I've decided I will just dump the contents into my compost bin and use compost next year rather than Mel's Mix. I'm out and shouldn't have to make more every other year.

My potatoes were the worst this year.  Mid summer sucked for time for me, with vacations and travel, I had no time to tend to my potato bins.  As a result, I stopped half-way up the tower and just let them go.  I should have been fine, with just a smaller havest, but I still haven't harvested them and the plants died back a while ago.  There is still some minor hope that they're salvagable, but we shall see.

Tomatos also didn't do all that well for me.  Again, my fault.  I didn't keep up with harvesting all the tomatoes, so they rotted on the vine, or succumed to Blossom End Rot.  Planting only heirlooms is not as glamorous as it sounds.  They don't have the resistances that hybrids do.  Also, you get orange Yellow Pear tomatoes.  I had no idea if they were done. I figured they would eventually turn yellow.  Nope. They rotted. 

About the only tomatoes that did well for me this year were my volunteers.  I hope to eat one from the complete mystery, and I swear I pulled a 5 pound tomato from the sucker start that doesn't look like anything I grew.  Unfortunately the beafsteak or whatever was cracked and not edible.  It was cool though.  I should post a pic of it.  Something to behold.

So you see, there hasn't been a good reason to post.  This year was a self-inflicted failure.  Next year should be better as my kids are getting into gardening and I'll keep at it for them.  Besides, with the economy showing strong signs for a 2011 recovery, growing my more fresh veggies is a good idea.  Don't you agree.

All this isn't to say that I didn't have any success.  Again, my carrots were great.  My sons still are bringing them in daily to eat.  I will not be doing the creative varieties next year.  They were duds.  Even the Purple Haze just isn't worth it.  The plain Jane orange carrots are just fine.  Variety not needed for my family.  /shrug

The broccoli and califlower are always a hit, though I think I will devote one bed to them next year so I don't run into late maturing cole crops interferring with my cubrits in summer.  Blah blah blah.  What I mean is my tall broccoli plants shaded the heck out of my cucumber starts so I got nothing to speak of from my summer cukes.  I think two plants survived to produce out of 18.  I think I'll plant tons of succession broccoli and cauliflower in my 44 SF bed.  It won't block anything and I will have tons of food the adults in my family love.  Still working on the kids, hehe.

For fall, I planted tons more carrots, some lettuce and broccoli / cauliflower.  Dosn't look like anything but the carrots have done much.  I guess I'll start even earlier next year.  I'll take KitsapFG's schedule and beat her to the punch by a month.  Or else I'll start inside like she does.  Sounds silly to start seeds indoors in the summer, but she'd know... She's the expert.

Sorry I haven't been posting anything.  There really hasn't been much to say.  When I do something I'll let you know, but it's fall and growth is pretty much at a standstill til spring.  Thanks for sticking around.  Next year will be better.

Enjoy your garden.