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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Good, Bad, and Ugly - December Garden Tour

This tour will be about the Good, Bad, and Ugly of our garden as it stands this first week of December.

Garden blogs are usually full of beautiful pictures of neatly arranged garden plots. This post will show you the under belly. Those moments when the garden isn’t so tidy.

But, so that I don’t scare you away; I’ll start with the good.

The Good

In the front you see the garlic has emerged and put on some size and in the back are some collard greens that are ready for harvest. The bed looks scarce, but there is garlic planted throughout. This is poor space planning because I definitely could have planted more collards. I need to have planted more collards because collards cook down to nothing.
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Bed 4
A bed full of turnips with small cabbage seedlings in what appears to be gaps in the turnips.
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Bed 5
A bed of frost-killed tomatoes. You would think this should be a part of the ugly. But take a closer look. You see that small area of green in the middle of the bed. Well that is a celery plant that was planted last spring. Yes, LAST SPRING! It survived 100+ degree weather because it was buried under a jungle of tomato plants. I left it there (pulled all the others) because I wanted celery seed. I expected the 100+ temps to cause it to bolt. Well, I guess it never got hot enough under all those tomatoes. I harvested most of it in October, some more in November, and I’ll be able to harvest more in a few weeks. This plant has survived a few frosts as well. Note to self: next spring, leave all the celery planted.
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Bed 8
I know this bed looks a mess and it is. The green you see is actually weeds. But, I called this good because under those dead plants are potatoes. We dug some of them up after I took this picture. This was our first attempt at fall potatoes. I;’ll share the harvest later after we clean them and weigh them. There aren’t many, but I totally neglected this bed. It's also ‘good’ because its got some volunteer dill and onion growing in it.
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Bed 10
Another bed of broccoli and cabbage. All of these were seeded indoors and transplanted late summer. Everything survived and the bed is nice and full.
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This bed also has another garden first for me….we’ll be harvesting cabbage fairly soon.
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The Bad

Bed 3
A cover crop of … I think its hairy vetch.

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Bed 7
This bed is broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage. I put it in the bad category because a few seedlings died and a few more never germinated. This bed should be full. So it’s a minor disappointment.
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Bed 11
Lettuce, Spinach, and Celery
Don’t see the spinach and celery. Me either. That is why this bed is BAD. The lettuce has done brilliantly; except the warm temps have some wanting to bolt. Spinach is hard hear because it really needs cool soil. Our soil doesn’t cool down enough until mid to late October. By then, the days are too short. I think I will start some in a few weeks (around Christmas) and set them out in Feb and hope for a March harvest.
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The Ugly

Bed 2
Pepper plants killed by frost
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Bed 6
Frost killed Beans
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Bed 9
Frost killed beans that didn’t produce a thing. I planted these much too late. I really wanted these cannellini beans because I love minestrone soup.
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Bed 12 is so bad that I didn’t even take a picture of it. Copy and paste any of the above pictures.

I hope these pictures don’t discourage anyone from gardening Laughing out loud, but gardening is work and as you can see….we’ve got work to do.

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