Sunday, September 21, 2014

Fall is already here

The rain continues to make any work outside miserable.  No garden work was accomplished this last week.  It rained almost every day.  When it isn't raining grass mowing has to be done or it would become a jungle.  I've lost count as to how many inches above our average rain fall we have received this year.  The gardens have become a muddy sticky mess covered with out of control weeds.  It's been a very disheartening year for gardens here.  With all the rain, even my focus on garden structure has not accomplished much.  It's really difficult to try to dig a post hole when the ground is soggy especially in river bottom gumbo. 

One good thing about the rain, it's kept me from being tempted to over do anything during my cancer treatment recovery.  I'm pretty much back to normal with strength and endurance.  I'm planning on getting back to the project list .... well that is if the weather will let me.  We are only two thirds through the month and we are already two inches above the average rain fall for September.

I was really blessed a week ago when I mowed 35th street corner.  Oh, by the way, the deed for 35th street corner finally came in the mail.  It a couple months longer for this property than Terra Nova Gardens did.  Anyway, the neighbor across the street was going to have extensive work done to her yard and outside of her house.  As a result her strawberry patch was going to be removed.  I was really considering a strawberry patch in this reclaimed garden bed from two posts ago.  I was able to dig up and transplant 30 plants into this bed.  I don't think I'll get much next year and I may just let the small harvest go for the birds to eat.  The next spring will be my turn and a cover will prevent them from being greedy.  I'll probably leave a small portion uncovered for them.  I'm not against sharing but those birds seem a bit greedy about food.  It wouldn't be so bad if they would eat the entire berry but they just peck at it enough to destroy the berry and move on to the next one. 
The potato harvest has begun.  This is the harvest from three potato plants.  It filled a five gallon bucket half full.  As you may recall I had a multilevel potato experiment going on this year.  I didn't get the four levels like I originally wanted due to errors with buying enough seed and storing the seed potatoes.  I did get two levels planted.  The larger potatoes were the bottom layer and the smaller potatoes came from the upper layer.  I feel the concept is doable but this year was not the success that I had hoped for.  Next year, I'm hoping, will be better planned with a more successful harvest.  The tomato and bell pepper are the last of a disappointing harvest.  Cleaning up the garden will begin this week.  I've never started cleaning up a garden so early in the year before.  I'm not really an extended season gardener but I may be forced to consider cover protection if this odd weather continues next year.

What do you see here?  A swingset in need of repair?  Imagery of youngsters laughing and playing, swinging, sliding down the slide, gliding on the horse glider.  All those would be good answers but now that Bradley, my grandson, has moved on in life, those days of activity on the swingset are over.  It sat silent all summer and now into the fall.  It stands strong and ready waiting for the day when children will return and bring it back to useful life. Sadly, I'm not sure that will happen any time soon. 
I've always thought that this type of structure would be good bones for a green house.  If the children return, it could quickly be converted back to a play area for them.  So next spring I'm seriously considering the possibilities of how to make that conversion.
There's not much else going on here during this wonderful fall weather.  The leaves are starting to turn into the fall colors and fall from the trees as the trees are looking forward to the Winter slumber.  I am looking forward to the Winter down time for planning and re evaluating the gardens for next year.  I've already got changes in mind for the next year.  It's kind of the gardener's way, don't you think?  Of course there's always the return to inside projects for the Winter.  My basement still needs much work to clear out the 30 years of collecting .... stuff.  I did make a dent in it last Winter and just maybe I might get it back to being useful again this Winter.  The furnace room needs some serious attention as well.

Here's a parting quote by Marcus Tullius Cicero.

If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.