Garden update: Harvest rolling in

As I write this post, it is Monday evening, and we have a frost advisory in Denver tonight. Worse, I am enough tired from a weekend away, and jaded from staring at my powdery-mildew and aphid-infested garden, that I have not bothered to go dash sheets over the plants. Wish us all luck, readers.

However, in the meantime, ripe vegetables are finally arriving en masse. Today and this weekend, more than 7 lbs. of tomatoes have come ripe. A few more and we’ll be really ready to break out the new-to-us food mill for some sauce-making.

Our peppers have grown, beets are ready, scarlet runner beans have pods on them, and even the peanut plants are large and healthy beneath their carpet of tomato vines (will there be peanuts underneath the dirt? Stay tuned).

The potato plant hasn’t died back yet, so I’m not sure if there are tubers in there.

We’re having a small fall crop of strawberry plants, and the bushes have spread beautifully in the late summer.

And if the frost doesn’t arrive, one huge pumpkin just might manage to turn orange, three petite cantaloupes might finish their maturation process, and our butternut squash could provide a fall surprise harvest.

The Meyer lemons are turning yellow, and the plant actually has leaves in preparation for its migration south indoors for the winter. (I believe the house wall to which it’s adjacent will shelter it from any chill tonight.)

And best of all, if the aphids don’t finish them off, I believe we will be able to harvest at least a few Brussels sprouts this year.

The sprouts already are big enough to eat. I view this achievement as a major accomplishment, as it has taken us three or four years of trying to grow Brussels sprouts to get them this far! Cross your fingers and suck some aphids off the plant …

How does your garden grow? Have you thrown in the towel? Tried ladybugs this late in the year for the aphid problem? Just starting out Down Under?

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5 thoughts on “Garden update: Harvest rolling in

  1. L'an says:

    I’m with you; when I heard about the frost advisory all I could think was “ugh.” We harvested all the ripe and ripe-ish tomatoes (three huge mixing bowls full) but left the runner beans. They seem to be happy still for the time being.

    The food mill is great for saucing–we invested in one this summer, too, and I was beyond happy to not have to peel all the tomatoes in advance of processing. One tip I picked up is to toss the tomatoes into boiling water for a few minutes before running them through the mill. This helps break the pulp down a bit, so you get a thicker sauce than you would by just milling raw tomatoes.

  2. Condo Blues says:

    I’m with you on praying against frost damange. My hanging tomato plant is a late bloomer. It has 9 tiny green tomatoes on it and I hope they live through tonight’s frost warning. I’ve only harvested 6 tomatoes from it so far this year.

    I think my herbs are almost done for the year. I picked the last bits of thai basil off my plants and put them in paper bags to dry. Then I’ll do the last of the sweet basil. My last leaves of my mint are starting to curl and turn brown. Fortunately, I’ve been harvesting, drying or freezing herbs all summer so we have a good bit set aside for fall and if they last that long (because we love to use herbs in cooking!) winter.

  3. jessimonster says:

    I have a ton of tomatoes that stubbornly refuse to ripen. What am I going to do with all these green tomatoes? I don’t eat fried stuff. I’m going to give them one more week, and if they don’t make any progress, I’m putting them on freecycle. The garden we currently have was put in by our home’s previous owners, and its not big enough for me. I want to start prepping the soil for next years garden, and its going to mean plowing over the little gardens we’ve got right now.

  4. cheaplikeme says:

    @jessimonster – I’ve heard you can tear off leaves from the tomato plant to expose the tomatoes to the sun (and perhaps put the plant into panic “make seeds” mode?). It might have helped at our house. Otherwise, Freecycle is a good idea … one year I made chow chow from 13 lbs of green tomatoes from a hailstorm. Only problem was, we didn’t like it. What a waste of time. Good luck.

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