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Thursday, August 27, 2015

Preparing the Fall Garden

Wow, late August, already! Somehow, I feel like the summer never really started, and here it is time for fall planting.

I've had fairly dismal luck in the past with planting the main garden with cold-tolerant crops, so this year my fall garden will be all containers that I can shelter with my pop-up greenhouse and then move into the sunroom as needed.

I'm starting to harvest the summer potatoes, so I'll have a few containers of potatoes to plant. These tend to grow slowly over the winter, but they tend to give at least a small crop in early spring.

I'm also way overdue to start the fall lettuces so they can get a nice start and be more or less fully grown by the time I bring them inside. I grow whatever cut-and-come-again varieties I have in my seed box, and they tend to replenish themselves slowly over the entire winter, meaning that we have at least a few fresh lettuce leaves for our plates a couple of times a week in the winter.

Also this year, I am going to rescue a volunteer tomato that I found growing in the compost and see if I can get it to set fruit before I pull it inside.  I've had about a 50% success rate in the past with tomatoes that got their start late; one year, I got 3-4 tomatoes off a plant in December. It's enough hope that I plan to try it again with this brave volunteer.

Finally, if I can keep my pepper plants healthy enough, I hope to pull them inside and see if I can get them to overwinter and give me a head start next year. I've never tried this, but I've heard good reports from someone who has tried it, and I'm game to see if I can extend the pepper season.

What are you growing in your fall garden?
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