Neighbours talking over the garden gate has long been a tradition. They share gardening tips, complain about the weather and pests yet are ever eager to discuss their gardens. That is what I had in mind when creating this blog. So stop by my garden gate to find out the latest happenings in my garden.

Happy Gardening!

Garden Gnome
"All my life through, the new sights of Nature made me rejoice like a child." ~ Madame Marie Curie"

Monday, October 02, 2006

The Start of Winterizing the Garden Beds

With the ADFF rapidly approaching we decided to start winterizing the raised garden beds Thursday before dinner. We already had plans to be away for the weekend so did not want the tomatoes to get hit by frost. In preparation, I did a final pick of the tomatoes including all the green tomatoes. We should have plenty of slicing tomatoes to last into mid Novemember.

Tomato Snowman

Other than tomato deformities related to blight and too much water, I've only had a couple of natural deformity in perfectly healthy tomatoes this year. One Lemon Boy had a small extension that might have got the picture censored. I did photograph it for my own records. It was a lovely tasting tomato. I found this little oddity in bed #6.

Perhaps this tomato was wise to what was coming. Two Heinz tomatoes grew together to form this natural snowman. I do hope this is not an omen of the upcoming winter. The Old Farmer's Almanac is predicting a nasty winter for us so perhaps we have been also duly warned by Mother Nature.

Bed #3

This is how bed #3 looked when it was about a quarter of the way cleared. The picking basket near the top of the greenhouse was filled twice with ripe tomatoes and four times with green tomatoes. This is a good sized basket about 18 inchs in diameter and 6 inches deep. The vines were havested then pulled from the bed. Harvesting the final crop and clearing the bed took little time with both of us working at it.

Garden Visitor

This poor little fellow was not very happy with the clearing of his free rental property. He will likely move onto the herb or strawberry bed. I'm he and his relatives will visit the garden agin next year. He works hard for his free accomodations keeping the vast insect population in check and provides great entertainment.

Rough Tilled Beds

Within a half hour the new beds along with beds #1 and bed #3 (not visible in the photo) were cleared of all vegetation. I would have left the marigolds but my husband said that would just delay the winterizing. Then the beds were rough tilled. I prefer to turn the beds when witerizing for a few reasons. Turning the soil gives me a good idea of what soil ammendments are necessary. I think it helps control soil pests like squash borer that overwinter in the soil as well. It helps aerate the soil and gives me a chance to check the condition of the wood sides of the raised beds. Finally, it helps to kick start that planning process for next year's gardens. Once the leaves start falling, the beds will be top dressed with chopped leaves

In the photo, beds #3 and 4 are not visible. Bed #2 is the herb bed and only portions of that are cleared for the winter. Bed #5 was not cleared. It is the furthest bed with the sunflower. It will be partially cleared within the next day or two.

Many of the outdoor potted plants were moved into the greenhouse. From there more seeds will be collected along with clippings. Some greenhouse plants will move into the house once the weather gets too cool and the greenhouse is shut down.

Happy Gardening

Garden Gnome

1 comment:

  1. I just want to say that your pictures are beautiful. They remind me of my house in England, full of vegetables and mini farms. The landscaping was done perfectly but I probably didnt have as many plants as you do, but this is still impressive!



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