It’s been a great year getting my hands a little bit dirty in my first attempt at gardening. Most notably, I learned that plants need loads of sun to grow – and mine didn’t have loads of sun – so I plan to move my two raised beds into a sunnier location next year. (The lack of sun also caused my vegetables to be rather miniature, but very cute.)
A few weeks ago, I picked two butternut squash and a zucchini before my squash plants developed powdery mildew. I think the powdery mildew was brought on by having the plants watered by the sprinklers while we were in Hawaii. I ended up ripping out the zucchini, but there are a few more butternut squashes on the vine. Perhaps they’ll still grow.
I was able to get half a dozen tomatoes before the deer started feasting on my tomato plants. The tomatoes also developed some sort of disease, but after snipping off the infected branches a few tomatoes are still growing. I’m not sure whether they’ll be good or not as I read that the taste of the fruit will be compromised if you cut off too many branches.
Here is a picture of the Brussels Sprouts from a few weeks ago. They still look like this today, except more starved for water… which reminds me I need to water them. I don’t think I’ll plant them again next year. They take WAY to long to grow and I don’t know if they are going to make it.
The leeks which get the most sun have grown pretty well. Unbeknownst to me, I did a good thing by planting the leeks and carrots side by side. Apparently leeks help ward off carrot flies. (I wondered why the carrots were so healthy.)
I uprooted the cucumber plant the same day I yanked the zucchini. It was looking bad.
Here are some pictures of the cabbage and onions. The cabbage was the size of a baseball – super tiny – but it smelled fresh and healthy and was beautifully flawless The onions were extremely tiny. I planted them next to the tomatoes and as the tomatoes grew, the onions suffered from lack of sun. (You can’t really tell in the photo, but they are TINY.) After pulled them, I let them dry in the sun for a week, something I didn’t know was necessary. Both the tiny cabbage and onions were used in today’s Minestrone soup. YUM!
I replanted lettuce and spinach a few weeks ago. The little lettuces have already been eaten by the deer. I’m going to have to leave my “fencing” up the whole time next year.
Other than the spinach and maybe a few more lettuces, I’m not planning to plant any fall crops. How about you?
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
1 zucchini, diced
1 cup cabbage, shredded
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cans (15 oz) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 cans (15 oz) beef broth
1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 cups cooked elbow macaroni or shells
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
Combine all ingredients in crock-pot except the pasta and parmesan. Cover and cook on low 7-9 hours, or on high 4-5 hours. Stir in the pasta and parmesan. Serve. (*I don’t put the parmesan in the soup because my son doesn’t like cheese, so we sprinkle it on as a garnish.)
I have loved every vegetable I was able to harvest, no matter how minuscule. I hope you’ve had a good time in your garden this year. Thanks for dropping by!