Monday, September 15, 2008

Sowing the Fall Crop

It's been hot here. Too hot for the Fall crop, so I'm late getting it sown. It was in the nineties this weekend. Spinach and peas do not like temperatures in the nineties, but the first frost is knocking on our door, so I had to get to work.

I sowed some green beans about three weeks ago that I thought were bush plants, but this weekend I realized they were actually vines, so I had to drag the trellis out of the shed and place it awkwardly in the middle of the bottom left quadrant. Oops! I'm not sure how I got those seeds confused. My brain has been on idle for the past month or so.

green beans on trellis

I had planned to use the trellis for the Fall crop of sugar snap peas, so I had to come up with a new plan. I decided to try some tee pees made from branches. Ian was sweet enough to construct them for me. We'll see how sugar snap peas like climbing up branches. They may do better than they did on the trellis. I always had to tie them to the trellis, but they may wind up the tee pees.

teepees for sugar snap peas

So, the bottom left quadrant looks kind of weird. LOL! Do you see those huge plants in the top left quadrant? They're eggplants. We are currently drowning in an overabundance of eggplant! 12 plants was too many.

bottom left garden quadrant

LAST YEAR I had to dig the grass out of the bottom right quadrant to plant four rows of spinach and lettuce. It took me at least an hour to get enough grass out of the way to make room for the Fall crop. Do you see the grass on the edges of the photo? I cropped it out due to embarrassment, I'm sure.

lettuce and spinach

THIS YEAR I just had to pull up the spent squash and green beans, and tug a couple rogue weeds from the bed. I sowed these two rows of spinach in a line of compost to give them an easier start. Clay is a difficult medium for fine seeds to germinate. The compost also gives them a nice boost of food when they first sprout. We're going out of town next week, so we'll see if our house sitter is able to keep the seedlings alive!

rows of spinach sown in compost

I thought I had some lettuce seeds left over from Spring, but I can't seem to locate them. Oh well. Two rows of spinach will probably be enough greens for us any way!

We did a lot of garden clean up this weekend, removing the exhausted squash plants, green beans and tomatoes, and pulling up the weeds that made their way into the empty spaces. We have been SO HAPPY with the garden beds that we constructed. There were very few weeds in the beds, and although the soil is a bit compacted, it is NOTHING like it was this time last year. The time we spent building the garden this Spring will be paid back to us greatly over the next coming years.

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