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Old 09-16-2011, 10:36 AM   #1
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Fall Gardening Harvest

I'm in zone 4, and one of these nights it will fall in temperatures to freezing.

My late planting of lettuce is coming up perfectly now. I had a wonderful sandwich last night with new lettuce.

The chard is beautiful and I'll harvest it any day now for a casserole dish with white beans.

The tomatoes have been coming strong for more than a month and there's at least another couple hundred green ones out there. I'll wait to the last minute before taking them off the vine.

Peppers are almost all harvested, chopped for pizza, frozen.

Some crops didn't do so well this year, so eggplant, turnips, beets--not much to show for them. Corn--one good meal and we don't know what we are doing with corn.

The melons are too small to harvest, we just pulled the cucumbers, we still have some winter squash ripening.

The garlic won't go into the garden for next year, until October and that is fast approaching. Herbs are doing okay in pots so far.

Harvest menu: BLT's tonight, vegetable soup very soon, tomato bread salad, fried green tomatoes, sushi rolled in seaweed w/cucumber slivers, dill, cream cheese, pickled ginger.

Anyone else approaching fall and working on their gardens?
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Old 09-16-2011, 10:42 AM   #2
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Hi Blissful, WOW, you're having a great harvest!

Congrats! "Hundreds of Maters" sounds great to me!
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Old 09-16-2011, 10:57 AM   #3
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Hi Blissful, WOW, you're having a great harvest!

Congrats! "Hundreds of Maters" sounds great to me!
Thanks Timothy, kind of you to say.

I'm thinking, fried green tomatoes (dipped in buttermilk, corn meal/and flour in olive oil), ripening them under newspaper in the garage, canning them, dehydrating them (which is mostly what I do) and we are eating as much as we can eat--they're so much better this time of year.

Chopped up with feta and bread cubes, ranch style dressing.

Fresh off the vine with a little salt and the juices running to our elbows.

Chopped with a little italian dressing, maybe salt.

Hollowed out and filled with cottage cheese and french dressing.

And my favorite: Toasted wheat bread, mayo, thick slices of tomatoes, salt and a liberal amount of pepper for a sandwich.

Tonight though, for the meat eaters, it's BLT's, toasted wheat bread, slathered in mayo, thick cuts of tomato, fresh lettuce, 3 slices of almost crisp bacon topped with another toasted wheat bread. We can't get enough of them.
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Old 09-16-2011, 03:05 PM   #4
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OMG, that all sounds absolutely delicious! Also, one of my own favorites is a nice large tomato hollowed out and then take the inside meat and mix it with either chicken salad or tuna salad, layer around the inside with lettuce strips that extend from the tomato to the edges of the plate in a flower pattern, then fill the tomato with the salad and top with hard-cooked egg, drizzled with blue cheese dressing. -To-Kill-For -
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Old 09-16-2011, 04:05 PM   #5
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i am green with envy. i tried planting veggies in pots one year. didn't do all that well for the work involved. i really should hit the farmers market or grand ave on tuesday.
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Old 09-20-2011, 09:58 AM   #6
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i am green with envy. i tried planting veggies in pots one year. didn't do all that well for the work involved. i really should hit the farmers market or grand ave on tuesday.
Babetoo, with 4 gardens and a half dozen pots (for my herbs), I'd say my pots did much worse than things I planted in the gardens. I don't know if I just didn't pay enough attention to the pots or that pots just don't do as well as regular gardens?
My rosemary took forever to germinate so they are small. The basil is scrawny and gone to seed.
I might try bringing some pots indoors and see what happens berfore the first hard frost.

So did you get to the farmers market or grand ave? Any good things found there?
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Old 09-21-2011, 08:14 AM   #7
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Most potted plant problems occur because the pots are too small--if you find that your plants are wilty after a day or two without watering, they don't have enough soil to keep them happy.

Size matters!
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Old 09-21-2011, 08:47 AM   #8
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Most potted plant problems occur because the pots are too small--if you find that your plants are wilty after a day or two without watering, they don't have enough soil to keep them happy.

Size matters!
Very, very true sparrowgrass.

To add a little more explanation as to why potted plants sometimes tend to dry up faster, consider this:

When plants are put into the ground, the root mass is under ground in the nice cool, damp dirt. The dirt is all around the roots and is endlessly deep.

Unless you've planted into a raised bed, the dirt also goes endlessly to the sides.

A potted plant has dirt that only goes a few inches to the sides and below the top of the soil.

A healthy plant can use all the moisture in a pot within a few hours when it's warm outside. If its hot out, the sunlight on the top and outside of the pot can actually "cook" the dirt and the roots contained in the dirt.

The soil in the pot can reach temperatures that will kill a plant quickly.

There are ways to make a potted plant thrive. As sparrowgrass has said, you can increase the size of the pot. This gives the roots more dirt to stay cool in, and makes it take longer for the sun to heat the dirt and root mass.

You can also add a sun barrier around the pot. Something as simple as another larger pot with the planted pot inside it. This will allow the heat from the sun to hit the outside pot and not the pot with the plant in it. This will make the plant MUCH happier.

Another method I've used is to build an inexpensive "trough" for your potted plants. Using 1/2" x 10" or 1/2" x 12" cheap grade lumber, build a trough that is as long as several pots and paint it flat white.

Flat white paint reflects better than any other color. Even glossy white won't reflect as well. The white paint will reflect most of the suns infrared light from the outside of the trough and will radically help reduce the heat that affects the pots within the trough.

This, in turn, will lower the heat on the soil inside the pots and lower the evaporation resulting from the heat. This leaves more water for the plants to use and keeps them closer to the optimal temperatures needed for great growth.
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Old 09-21-2011, 08:51 AM   #9
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My garden really didn't do very well this year. Between the rabbits getting in my fence, my neigbor putting his weeds in my garden, and the wet spring and summer, things have been a little blah. I was able to get a large patch of carrots out of the garden and a few tomatoes and cucumbers.
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Old 09-21-2011, 08:56 AM   #10
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My garden really didn't do very well this year. Between the rabbits getting in my fence, my neighbor putting his weeds in my garden, and the wet spring and summer, things have been a little blah. I was able to get a large patch of carrots out of the garden and a few tomatoes and cucumbers.
Mother Nature sometimes makes it as difficult as can be to grow our veggies! Here in North Florida, there are so many critters that love the veggies too, that sometimes I feel more like a zoo keeper than a veggie grower!

It's a major reason I love hydroponic gardening a thousand times more than traditional gardening. Pests, rain, and super hot summers are no longer a concern. I can even extend the growing season for an extra month or two very inexpensively.
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