The old and the new in the fall garden


The garden looks funny this time of year.

Our tomato plants, the stars of high summer, are very faded. The stakes are falling over, the plants are mostly brown, and the fruit is just hanging around, staying green, with one or two lackluster red ‘maters occasionally showing their faces. You can almost hear them sigh as they ripen.

Of the summer stuff, the peppers are the only plants that still look perky, but their production is also slowing down with the cooler weather. We’re still harvesting habaneros and jalapenos, plus some bells, and we’ll surely get another round of poblanos before the season closes.

On the other hand, our fall and winter crops are doing quite nicely. They love all the rain and cool nights. Here’s part of our fall salad patch: mixed lettuce, mizuna, and arugula. We’ve planted more of those crops, plus mache and claytonia, for winter salads that will live under cold frames when the frost arrives.

This is our first time experimenting with floating row cover, which we put over the winter salad beds and this little patch of kale. We’ve had many problems in the past with slugs and unidentified bugs eating these little seedlings, so this is an organic solution that so far, seems to be working great. Not the most picturesque thing in the world, but we’re fine with the tradeoff.

We’ve also got decent turnips and radishes going, and a parsley patch that won’t quit. So, despite the generally tired vibe, the garden is actually still very much alive.

What do you have growing? Anything coming along for fall and winter?