Saturday, December 7, 2013

Reflections 2013

It's been a while since I posted on the ole blog...seems life has gotten in the way and I have become less disciplined to write what is happening in the garden.

But let me see if I can catch up to the present time.

I have gotten the fine art of starting seeds, transplanting and hardening off seedlings down pat. I have been selling my surplus which offset the cost of the seeds, seed starting medium and transplant cells. Basically I got all my plants for free!

What worked really well this year was being diversified in our growing methods.

The raised beds produced over 80 lbs of potatoes. We then planted collards ...and after harvesting the greens we planted peppers in them. Everything did great.

We grew tomatoes in self watering buckets, straw bales and our newly set up rain gutter system. For the first time our bale tomatoes did not do well. They got early blight from a cold snap we had early on ..and while the plants themselves looked terrible we were able to harvest some fruit from them. Luckily the self watering buckets and gutter garden kicked in and we were able to harvest lots from them before they too succumbed to the blight. I planted a second season bucket garden and they actually have been producing for us slowly. They are currently in the greenhouse...with probably 50 fruit on them. I am totally stoked we are getting toms in December!!!

I dehydrated quite a bit this season as well. Basil, celery leaf, squash, mushrooms, potatoes, and peppers. I have used them all...and know now I need to step up that way of preserving as well.

I canned way more this summer as well to the tune of:

Over 30 pints of tomato sauce which we have been using for pizza sauce(delicious)and chili.
100 pints of pickled peppers(great in salads, on pizza, and brats).
12 1/2 pints of Blueberry jelly

Need to step of the canning next season as well. Hope to have Kale for canning soon.

So, there you have it ... it was a prosperous summer season.

We'll see what happens with the winter garden. We lost the broccoli to a hard freeze along with the Romaine Lettuce. The Kale and Black seeded Simpson lettuce is holding their own. The strawberries look great!

I have ~ 24 collard plants to plant next week.

Seed starting time in Jan...will be here before you know it!

Hope you all have a wonderful Holiday is to us...Happy gardening in 2014!

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