|Butternut squash ripening in the kitchen window|
I had big plans for this first year of the garden. Mostly, I wanted to succeed with the main storage crops-potatoes, carrots, winter squash, and onions, with the one stated goal of growing enough onions to be onion independant. By that, I mean to not need to buy onions until next years harvest. I didnt make that goal.
All the goals were lofty, starting from scratch here, creating new garden space from untested soil, in our first months here at the homestead, and experiencing a record breaking winter and late spring.
Not only that, but for the first time, I was starting everything from seed, something I had never done.
|A basket of goodness|
|Tossing out a couple packages of seed produced a lovely, simple flower garden near our porch.|
|Cant complain about the tomatoes. I am estimating over 200 pounds of them, no kidding|
The main disappointments and/or failures were the storage crops-potatoes, winter squash, onions, corn. That really is a disappointment.
However, it is a reality that not everything is going to grow. Critters, insects, plant diseases.... these are constant threats, and sometimes they win. And failures are often the best learning experiences. I will do some things differently next year.
|The main garden in August|
It has been a full time job. Its no joke really trying to grow your own food. I am tired and ready for a winter break.
If the greenhouse gets built before spring, I can stretch the seasons even further . For now, most of the garden is put to bed for the winter. We still have abundant kale, carrots, celery, cabbage, and the fall plantings of new lettuce, spinach, turnips, and beets that have promise of harvest before everything freezes. That might be very soon.
Next year? More corn, less cabbages,and choose a later maturing variety, a different heirloom slicing tomato, stick with one variety of paste tomato, more winter squash, more onions, more sweet peppers and more green chiles, and try to succession plant the lettuce better... have important crops in at least two places, in case of things like deer or turkey again. More beans, and more peas.
Now where am I going to put all the"more" stuff?