In my garden
Yesterday, in anticipation of a (very) early frost, the boys and I stripped the tomatoes plants of their last fruits. As you can see, the green outweighs the red by a sad margin. (So Havilah, about that green-tomato relish you recommended…)
It been so fun to watch our garden grow this year. In a new climate, with new soil and an incredibly short growing season, I had no idea what to expect. Here’s what I want to remember for next year:
1. More tomatoes. They’re the grand dame of the garden, and you just can’t have too many. And way more varieties. This year I did mostly cherry and roma, and I missed those big, fat, juicy ones.
2. More of what we eat, and less of the fancy stuff. Fava beans sounded like a great idea, but I think we’ll stick with the standard green bean for now.
3. In that vein, one melon plant would be a good idea. Twelve (of six different varieties) took up precious space, and I don’t have a single melon to show for it.
4. Corn (Preston’s choice) was pure fun. Double that next year.
5. Ditto with the snap peas. Yum.
6. Did I mention more tomatoes?
7. Loved the potatoes. More next year. And wait longer to harvest.
8. Don’t let the kids pull up all the carrots in July.
9. I’m on the fence about heirloom seeds. I love the idea behind heirlooms, and thumbing my nose at Monsanto, but the yield was hugely disappointing, and with a smaller gardening space, I want to use every last inch for good production. So I’m not sure what I’m going to do about that.
10. Sunflowers (also Preston’s–he had all the showy plants this year) were another garden beauty. I think I’ll plant an entire forest next year. Anyone know how to harvest the seeds?
The best part, of course, was not the harvest, but watching my kids discover the miracle of dropping a seed in the ground and watching it turn into a 10-foot sunflower. Or hearing them say, “I’m going to get a snack,” and head out to the garden to eat basil and carrots, with the dirt still clinging to the roots. I will miss sneaking out to the garden to hunt for dinner’s garnish, but I have some good stuff stored up in my freezer and my basement to keep me remembering until next year.