Saturday, October 22, 2011

Clean up the Yard and Garden

The yard cleanup has begun.  One of my trees and the two neighbors with like trees has dropped all their leaves.  However the neighbors with Maple trees have another two to three weeks before they begin their leaf drop.  So this is only round one of the yard leaf cleanup.  I will have to do another round of cleanup before winter sets in.  This picture is the poor man's leaf chipper.  It looks a lot like a lawn mower.  Doesn't it?  Yeah, old Chomper the lawn mower comes through again.  His 30 weight oil is a little stiff in the cooler weather but once he gets going, he can crunch leaves with the best of them.

The first round of leaves go straight to the compost pile.  I have a limited space for composting so the second round of leaves with have to go to the yard waste and let the city compost it.  Next year I should have more space to garden and more space to compost.  Here's the picture of the Urban Ranch compost pile.  Next spring it will be much smaller.  I will peel off the layer that I just added this fall, scoop out last year's layer and use it for the garden, and pile this years layer back on the compost pile.  I just don't like the method to always be turning the pile to keep the composting active.  My two year method works for me and I'm sticking to it.

I pulled out the rest of the garden as it was definitely spent.  There were two grocery bags of green peppers and a few little teeny tiny tomatoes.  All the garden debris went into the yard waste bags to be set out for the city to take away.  I don't want to take any chances of disease or bug eggs make it to next year's garden.  After all that work, I just have to take a break and enjoy the great fall day.  The temperatures have fallen into the upper 20s a time or two but the hanging baskets have not been bitten my old Jack Frost.  The Impatiens have really put on a display this summer.  The side bar Begonias have done a great job as well but they are starting to show a little wear and tear around the edges.  It's going to be hard to beat this display next year.

The last harvest except for the potatoes was a big one from the green peppers and not so much from the tomatoes.  Now if I can only come up with some thing to do with all these peppers.  Any suggestions?  Anyone?  Anyone?

I have dismantled the automated watering system and drained all the hoses.  The hoses are stored in a big barrel and the timers go inside for the winter to keep them from freezing.  The tanks and barrels have been all been drained for the winter.  I'm kind of sad to see things winding down for this year but I'm already planning bigger and better things for next year.

I hope everyone is enjoying the fall weather.


  1. Man, look at all those leaves becoming compost. That is great.
    My garden only got a light frost Wednesday night, but it was time to remove my plants as well. I spent all day today out in the garden. It was a gorgeous fall day for me!
    I picked all my peppers before the predicted frost and chopped them up and put them in freezer bags in one cup amounts. They are ready to toss into recipes that way. You can also leave some in larger chunks for different dishes. So good to have home grown peppers in chili during the winter.
    I drained my rain barrels today too. I flip them over to sit out winter in the same spot and put all the attachments in the garage. Amazingly, I had full barrels so I watered a lot today which is great for the plants.
    You're going to have so much fun planning you bigger gardening space over the winter!

  2. Hi Dave,

    I hope you're having an awesome week! I thought you might like this infographic I helped build about the health, mental, and financial benefits of gardening (

    If you think your readers would like it too, please feel free to use it on Old Dave's Garden blog. There's code at the bottom of our post that makes it super easy to post on your blog. It's all free (of course). If you have any questions about posting it, let me know and I'll try to help.

    I don't know where else to contact you so I just posted a comment here. :)


    ~ Janey

  3. Did I leave a comment yet? It says I have successfully unsubscribed to the follow-up comments. I did tell someone that I cut up peppers and freeze them, but don't remember who.

    I like your handy dandy leaf chopper. Larry has one like it. I do manage to have enough room to compost the leaves that end up in our yard, and those of some of our neighbors.

    Our sprinkler-Oh, I'm glad I was here, and writing to you, because I forgot to turn the sprinkler off. I am trying to get the whole yard watered before we have to take the hoses down. Larry already turned off the underground sprinkler system. Well, that area will be nice and soaked.

    We sure have had a nice last few days, haven't we?

  4. Nice flowers in the third photo :-).