Thursday, October 22, 2015

getting in the garden harvest, 2015

With the first frost fast approaching (already past by the time I got to writing about this), it is time to get everything out of the vegetable garden!  This year the first frost has been unusually late, so everything had lots of time to fully ripen…as evidenced by this giant rutabaga!

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In case you are wondering, I am not a stylish gardener (see earwarmers above) and I just want you to know I am not as scary as I look here…hah!

About a week ago I spent a day out in the garden getting all the last stuff out (except for the potatoes and carrots which are underground and safe from the light frosts we’re getting so far) and it was great to see all the work of the summer come to fruition! 

I got a lot of cabbages this year--

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and little baby cabbages which will be yummy sauteed in butter (they grew from where I cut a cabbage in late summer).

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Closer here:

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The leek crop turned out great, and I can’t wait for leek soup!

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The cover crop (oats) planted around the leeks are doing well.  I noticed that where I had spread aged manure earlier in the year, the oats are growing so much taller and are a healthier green than the areas without.  I took a picture but I’m afraid the contrast doesn’t show up as well as it does in real life. 

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The winter rye cover crop is slowly coming up.  It emerges as a really pretty purplish-red shoot. 

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Sure signs that frost is coming…sheets covering plants (in this case, swiss chard) in the background:

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I always cut my brussels sprout stalks with loppers, after removing the foliage.  They’ll keep for a while in a cool place so I’m sure we’ll be enjoying the sprouts (well, the ones the kids didn’t already pick off and eat) well into November. 

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The flowers seem especially pretty right before a frost, sadly these were wilted the next day (and I didn’t think to pick them as I had already picked all my dahlias and other tender flowers).  This is a cockscomb.

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I started with rutabagas, and I’ll finish with them too.  We really like raw rutabagas (cut up like carrots), though the huge one in the embarrassing photo of me will likely become chicken food as it will probably be woody and tough. 

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Speaking of chickens, here they are waiting to find a good route into the garden so they can gobble up my winter rye seeds!

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The garden had it’s share of failures this year, like my pitiful tomato harvest, but it is always fun and much more picturesque to celebrate the successes!

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