My garden, August 2019
The results of my organic garden totally hinged on a great combination of being too hot, and not being warm enough. When you have odds like that, your harvest success will be questionable. An organic garden to me is a garden set with good intentions. I’ve committed to each and every planting here, to do my best, keep it hydrated, and hope to protect it from some minor elements. But nothing could help my organic summer garden while we have Mother Nature at the helm. As she should be, she’s unpredictable. She’s fierce, she’s cruel, she’s loving and kind. But most importantly, she’s a force not to be reckoned with or attacked.
Let me explain. My garden work began somewhere around the end of April. I planted the heirloom potatoes, onions and garlic. On May 5th, we had a sudden snow storm, which put about 1″ or so on my new garden buds. My beautiful row of green potato plants were stopped in their tracks from a dropping of cold snow, which stayed overnight. In addition, my onion and garlic were also sadly effected by the snow, as well as my nasturtium plantings. Hey, that’s life. What can I do. I did get a bit of a second chance, but it’s nothing to be proud of. I will follow up after the harvest to report my wins and losses in the potato department.
Garden success in celery
But the sun did come out one day in June, and decided to warm things up. This is the reason I think I’ve had such a mixed start to my garden success. Some plants were at the perfect size for heat, while others, just really needed warmth to kick off their grow. My celery patch has managed to do well. It’s been a labor intensive crop with weeding and building a water damn so watering is effective, but I think the little stocks have doubled in size, and I will more than likely begin to harvest in a week or two, stock by stock.
My other bits of disappointment
Tucked behind the celery, I have some cauliflower, and beets. While in front of the celery, I have a nice zucchini row, an average growth of green beans, and a struggling row of mixed cabbage. Again, a lack luster delivery in the zucchini department. From the looks of the plants and fruits, I think the heat, 2 weeks prior did a number on my fresh blossoming zucchini. The cabbage has struggled. Between heat and rain and the white fly, it was not perfect. Though I opted not to spray for the white fly, even though I knew, it would take its toll.
So, you can see my garden plot success was ho-hum this year, but I am proud of my 3 little spicy pepper plants I planted in the pot, as well as my heirloom tomatoes and basil planted in the galvanized bucket. Who know why some spots have better luck than others. But, this was the first year I had success with both nightshade plants, from seed. Due to the cool start to summer, my tomatoes did suffer, but they quickly caught up with the first round of heat and doubled and tripled in size, and are now full of new green tomatoes.
I’ve enjoyed the many aspects of the herbs from the summer garden. The mint, verbena, yarrow, nepita, oregano, sage, are all in huge abundance. As I’ve learned over the years, herbs are easy. As long as it’s not boiling temperatures every day, and there’s not a pesky insect wreaking havoc in the mint patch, your luck should be well. Don’t forget to harvest and dry the herbs systematically throughout the summer. Try to select the best branches with the least damage. Set aside and dry.
In closing on this early day of August, I”m not sure what more my lovely, organic summer garden can bring me. My basil is in abundance for the first year ever. I have lots of heirloom tomatoes waiting for me over the next few weeks, and I hope to collect a bounty of spicy peppers, beans, and zucchini. I could have done more, but as I say every garden season, there’s always next year.