Friday, August 26, 2016

Another front meadow view

Our pocket meadow in front remains a joy. 

The woodchuck who has munched on the sunflowers in back and on the sides of the house (not to mention the last of the kale and parsley in the vegetable beds this afternoon!) hasn't made any inroads on the tough native perennials in the pocket meadow up front.

Leaving for a special dinner this evening (32nd anniversary), it was lovely to see our low-maintenance meadow in front.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Pocket meadow view

The mix of native perennials in the pocket meadow is particularly nice this year. Abundant rain over the last month suited Joe-Pye, Rudbeckia, and Solidago, as well as the (non-native) annual sunflowers along the street.  The Vernonia is covered with small bees collecting pollen at the moment!

It's a lovely view out the front door.

(With apologies for the blurry iPhone photos!)

Monday, August 22, 2016

More clean-up and planting

The squash vines, on further examination, were fraught with powdery mildew, so they've been edited, and I've propped up a couple of mid-summer transplant tomatoes (favorite San Marzanos grown from seed) over the trellises, with hopes of some late fruits.  There are a lot of set ones, so I'm hopeful.

I've sown flats of mesclun, spinach, and argula, along with kale, poked in some sugar snap peas, and have beet seeds soaking overnight.  There's just enough space to sow some beets and turnips tomorrow.
seeds for fall plantings
The tomatillos in the lower bed are doing well, so they'll stay, but I pulled a scrawny bean vine, left the Mountain Pride tomato (looks great, but doesn't get enough sun).  Perhaps now in fall, the late afternoon and early morning light will grow some carrots?  I'll sow some tomorrow and see.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Gettting ready for fall

Vegetable garden change-outs are always a bit about promise and hope.  Pulling out spent squash vines, pruning wilt-fraught tomato bits, removing beans past their prime:  all are part of getting ready for fall.

I'll be sowing sugar snap peas on the trellises (I'm always hopeful of a fall crop) and sowing beets, spinach, lettuce, and kale over the coming week.  I'm leaving one of the beans for now, along with the butternut squash, and cherry tomatoes, as all are still producing and seem disease-free.

If I find some of the sprouting broccoli starts (new last spring from Bonnie), I'll put those in too.

My tomatillo plant in the lower bed is producing an abundance of fruits, and maybe the late-grown and transplanted peppers will mature in time for some homegrown salsa.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Thank you, gardening friends!

I have just had the VERY happy experience of returning to our garden this weekend to something quite nice.  I had really fretted and worried about leaving for almost three weeks in mid-summer!  
pocket meadow
It was not a good time to leave, although I'd "battened down" the garden by pruning, harvesting all ripening veggies, and adding some water-absorbent crystals to the soil.

I was just hopeful that all of the plants would survive, much less flourish.

But, Asheville has had plenty of rain, thank goodness, an unexpected change from the hot and dry conditions in July.  So the entire garden is lovely and green, after almost three weeks away. 

vegetable garden in front

And thanks to our neighbors and other gardening friends, somehow they collectively managed to diligently harvest beans, eggplant, tomatoes, and squash while I was gone (a daily routine for me), so I didn't return to a mess of overgrown veggies (aside from a few errant squash and beans). Bliss. Just a beautiful array of beans and a few tomatoes to harvest -- how wonderful is that?

Not sure who were the main harvesters yet (I sent out "please help yourself" notices to at least 7 folks), but I am so glad that they (whomever the mix) were able to enjoy the vegetables! 

And the plants still all look great. I had been steeling myself for something dire!

Friday, August 19, 2016

A final bonfire at the St. Lawrence River

We headed home today to the green mountains of Western North Carolina, leaving my Dad and Nancy for their last week plus in Quebec.

The winds weren't favorable for a fire on the beach while we were there, but were perfect tonight!

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