Week two of four in the extended season

Wow. What a lot of Fall weather all at once! A quick freeze, and then several inches of rain and that is all for drought, smoke and heat! The major questions for the garden are how much damage from the freeze. The challenge of picking in the rain or at a minimum cold and windy isn’t that bad if there is indeed produce to find. The most significant damage is to the eggplants and the outside tomatoes. Frankly, none of you have been asking for lots more eggplant. And of course, the tomatoes in the greenhouse shrugged off the freeze outdoors.

really tough job being an outside tomato in the fall

There is a good planting of lettuce both in the greenhouse and under cover on an outside raised bed, and the root crops actually kinda like the frost. The green beans are done for the year, of course.

Parsnips (left near digger) demonstrating complete disregard of freezing

The big mystery will be cut flowers. The snapdragons, stock and zinnia seemed to make it past the freeze, but the rain is tough on the blossoms. There may or may not be cut flowers in the boxes this week, the flower farmer will render a judgement in the days to come.

Flowers showing a bit of trauma but being very brave.

Obviously, the end is coming at us all, but that is what is to be expected this time of year. The slicer tomatoes get very slow to ripen in the greenhouse; the peppers outside were covered but they also slow down. It is probably a good thing for you to accept green tomatoes the next two weeks (slicers) and set them out where they can turn red. The peppers will change color as well.

Brassicas were not checked tonight before writing this, but it is to be expected that especially the cauliflower isn’t all that happy. Again, more will be known as the week moves along. There is a new bed of cabbage that is what cabbage is supposed to look like; that said, it has not formed firm heads yet. They may not before the season ends.

In theory there will be some weather breaks Wednesday and on through the week which will let some more winter preparation continue. The garden as well as the farm really demand considerable work through the winter, with the constraint of various weather and lighting conditions. That said… onward into the season that comes!

this week:

Lettuce Romaine or Bibb young lettuce – still young, but getting some size. Some Cegolaine is lurking, but not ready this week.
Brassicas Small Kale leaves – TBD about Broccoli, Cauliflower. Some small cabbage exists. Will check new heads – but unlikely.
Roots Red beets and White beets with greens. Carrots, Parsnips and Turnips… check Radishes again, pretty small last week.
Greens Red Chard, Arugula.
Herbs Chives, Parsley, Basil, Celery – quite a bit available – nominally two or three stalks – ask for more if you want it.
Misc Bigger bulb onion and a few green onions.
Flower of the week: Cut Flowers. Snapdragons and Statice and Zinnia; TBD might not be any good this week.
Cherry Tomatoes still doing very well. Pint or half pint depending on ripe. possibly Roma or small red slicers, a few larger perhaps. Green Slicers are optional this week; next week you get them almost for sure.
Cukes – They are trying. Really trying. But it just isn’t going all that well for the cukes. Farmer’s choice…
Lots of green peppers (not totally ripe). Let them sit out in your kitchen – they crave some warmth. Really big spicy peppers.
Summer squash, Eggplant: R.I.P. – the freeze was just too much.
Apples are all done other than really wormy ones which you will have to demand to get.

It looks like there is still a half beef available. If it isn’t sold, the farm will give up it’s half for now and carry over the unsold until next year sometime…

By Doug

--- 'farmer doug' is the planner and heavy lifter for the CSA and the LLC. Loves to teach; "ask him the time, he'll tell you how to make a clock." Always has a new idea to try, some of which work. BTW - if you try and phone call, and you are NOT in his caller ID you will not be answered - just leave a message and you will be called right back.

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