There was a heavy frost warning for all of VT for Friday and Saturday nights. Apparently we’re far enough up the hillside to avoid even these widespread frost warnings (which is one reason I can get away with a late planting of my fall garden) But I’m not one to take chances with my little squash seedlings, so I was out there covering them up both nights.
Saturday morning started by discovering my spring-planted summer squash had survived the night. But still, I decided it was time to harvest my winter squash. Now I have 10 butternuts, 5 acorn/carnival, and 6 delicata squash curing behind my wood stove. I also picked a grocery bag full of dry bean pods, which I’ll shell once they’ve cured. With the exception of the broccoli, brussel sprouts, and tomatillos* my summer garden is done.
So, for my sake if not yours, I’d like to recap and write down what I hope to do next year.
Garlic: Was awesome, so easy and growing it between the corn totally worked.
Next (this) year: plant more, keep the chickens from digging them up in the fall before the snows.
Beans: I love dry beans, but I’ve decided I dislike bush beans for this purpose. The fruit spend too much time in contact with the ground, thus molding or sprouting too much.
Next year: Bush beans for my green beans and pole beans for my dry beans. This will also keep me from getting the two confused as I’m picking green beans…
Tomatoes, etc: Too sensitive to blight (except those tomatillos)
Next year:Not growing any. I need to give the soil a year off. We may try the potatoes grown in sacks of planting soil trick – but if so we’ll do it outside the normal veggie garden.
Corn: I love it, even with Irene knocking it over right as it peaked.
Next year: the Ashworth is quick enough I hope to do 3 successive plantings to extend the harvest, rather than having it all ripen at once. Also I think with the extra garden space I might try two rows of popping corn.
Coles: Broccoli and cabbage good garden crops for me, they freeze well and we eat lots. Brussel sprouts did well, if we eat them all we should grow more.
Next year: I should just be grown from seedlings. I can’t start my own have have them not-leggy unless I get a grow light.
Peas: Spring ones didn’t germinate.
Next year: skip the spring planting, plant more in the fall, they’re doing great now.
Squashes: Planting them in a hole with compost in the bottom, rather than in a mound, continues to work wonderfully!
Next year: Get traps/organic sprays for the cucumber beetles and squash bugs. They took out all my buttercup vines this year.
Other: I want to try sweet potatoes next year, they’re not a nightshade relative and I’m going to have extra space what with not doing tomatoes. I also want to do a true three-sisters planting with pole beans growing up the corn stalks and squash underneath for weed control. This goes with my desire for popping corn, since it’s hard to get into a garden like this and pick sweet corn without stepping on squash vines.
*motto: more frost-proof than any member of the nightshade family has
any right to be