Tuesday, September 23, 2014

In the garden: Fall !!!

It's officially fall and around here that means our second growing season is under way.

Only mine is off to a pretty poor start. . .

I put in some lettuces, two small patches of different varieties, with the intention of adding more every few weeks or so to extend the harvest. They went in the ground September 10th and by the time they finally sprouted 11 days later I was beginning to think they were a bust! A few of the sprouts are just now sending up true leaves. I'll probably wait a little longer to let them mature a bit more before planting a second batch.

I also set out some radish seeds at the same time but that has definitely turned out to be a bust.  I got this one lone, deformed sprout for my efforts. I'll try setting out some fresh seed today and see what happens.

Around here broccoli transplants go into the ground in October so while I was planting the other stuff I started a few seeds under the grow light. As usual my grow light starts were pretty pathetic. Even though I had them right up close to the light and the light on from the time the seeds were put in the pots, the plants shot up as if they were in the dark and desperately trying to find light. As is often the case when this happens, it resulted in very weak sprouts that just didn't make it.

So I've planted a few more broccoli seeds but this time I'm leaving the grow-tray out in the greenhouse, cover on for protection against marauding grasshoppers and sitting up on an unused planter for faster night-time cooling. We'll see if that does any better.

Fall also means the humming birds are abandoning us for warmer climes. They turn up in droves in early September but before the month is out they're suddenly gone. One day there's the constant drone of dozens battling around the feeder, the next day there's one or two stragglers left. While they were here they went through two and a half gallons of syrup, requiring refilling the feeder every 10 hours or so, now I'll probably end up tossing the half gallon I have left since it won't keep until they return in the spring.

But we still have a few of the usual creatures hanging around.

It will probably be November before the frogs and toads pull the blanket over their heads to wait for warmer weather, sometime in late February, early March.

And most of the insects, including this striking beetle which I found standing next to me this morning, will disappear for a few months as well. 

But the rabbits, though their numbers will diminish, will stick around through the winter, helping to clean up the seed birds have tossed out of the feeders.

No comments:

Post a Comment