My girls haven’t really wanted to play “mud pie kitchen” all summer long. But, the shift in season has them racing outdoors each day before they’ve even gotten dressed, gathering ingredients for their little back porch kitchen.
I on the other hand, spent the summer neglecting my garden. At one point I wondered if I even liked gardening anymore. Looking outside at the mess of weeds only caused me stress, so I mostly ignored it. But, after two days straight of working to get it under control and ready for winter, I realize that I do still love my garden. Of course I do! I’ve been growing things since before I even had a proper place to do so. My high school aptitude test predicted farming as the best career choice for me. While farming is not on my agenda right now, growing and tending plants is part of who I am. But, it’s okay to take a break sometimes, to focus on other things, and to re-evaluate.
Last fall, gardening was impossible for me because I was at the end of a difficult pregnancy, so I am really excited to have put in a fall garden this year, even if I was late to do it. We have all of the beds cleared and planted with either cover crops or vegetables. I planted a mixture of buckwheat, crimson clover, and turnips as a cover. Buckwheat is quick to flower and loved by bees, so I am hoping that it will before first frost. If not, oh well. I plant crimson clover every fall and look forward to it blooming the following spring, providing a great nectar source for our bees. I’ve never planted turnips as part of a cover crop mix, and I was on the late side getting them planted. They are quick to grow, and hopefully we’ll be able to harvest some late this fall. Two beds of garlic were planted, along with carrots, beets, cabbage, and collards. I already had the seeds and figured it wouldn’t hurt to plant them, even if frost ruins my plans.
I should have taken a good before picture of the garden-it was an absolute disaster, with nearly every bed overgrown with weeds. Now everything looks bare, but as the clover and buckwheat start germinating over the next few days, it will green up.
I’m happy again to look out the window at my garden.
p.s. I took a photo of my garden once a week all season long in 2012. Here’s a link to that series of photos, all in one post.