Yup- it is getting cooler out now. But surprisingly the tomatoes, which I usually find don't taste as good when the nights get cool, still are summer yummy.
Why, when I've been eating them for a solid 14 weeks now, am I still eating as many as I can? One for sale...one for me it seems to go.
I know it won't be much longer.
But there are still so many good summer things in the garden. Yes- the tomatoes, but also really good sweet and hot peppers. Still some Naga Jolokias, for folks brave enough to try the worlds hottest pepper.
Tomatillos, ground cherries, cape gooseberries, huckleberries, Bobis Albenga beans, rat tailed radish. This all has to come off before the frost. There are still seeds to collect from these, and about 20 other different types of beans, dry, bush snap, pole, runner and cowpeas.
I think there will be oodles of bean seed. Enough for my planting needs and the seed exchanges, enough to sell some, and enough for lots of great dried beans for our winter meals.
Noticed a few tomatoes today too I need the seed from, most notably Kentucky Plate, a HUGE pink tomato (picked a 3 lb one today), and Canadian Heart.
I have potatoes to dig. I think it is a good crop, particularly of one of my favourites....the French Fingerlings. I planted them in July, avoided the Colorado Potato Beetle, and now have to get them up. But it isn't a bad job, as they are just sitting under a good pile of hay down the rows.
I imagine the mice have enjoyed a few, but there are still lots.
I'll leave the carrots and the beets in for quite a while. I am selling good quantities of both right now, but the carrots improve drastically after a good hard frost. So sweet. I'll dig both up and store them before the ground freezes entirely.
There are lots of cruciferous types in the garden too - kales, leaf broccoli, regular broccoli, cabbages, collards and more. These too are much improved after a frost, so on they stay. These crops, plus the chards, are workhorses. I keep picking them and they keep coming. The plants are so gorgeous and productive now I'm thinking I need to put a low tunnel over them so they'll carry on even longer.
And there is still planting to do.
I like to get my 2011 garlic crop in now. I will still have lots for sale, but I also hold back quite a bit to plant. Music is my main variety, but I also have some Italian Purple, a softneck with huge heads and cloves for planting. Make that next weeks goal.
This weekend the hoophouse tomatoes, some of which have been producing since June, will say their good-byes. Yes, it is time to plant the winter garden in there. Winter lettuces, chards, mustards, chinese greens and, (I have to say it- I love the name), Ching Chang Choy. And more!
Squash is out there too, some of it a bit of a gift. Butternuts, from On the Twenty compost have done well, and I have quite a few intentional acorns.
But for sure this weekend we'll take a break and do what lots of other Fleeters (those from Wainfleet) do. We'll check out the Wainfleet Fall Fair, a very small agricultural offering from Niagara's smallest township. I'll beeline, of course, to the veggies to see how everyone else's season has gone. Should be great displays-wow- it's been, and still is a great year!