Wednesday, October 3, 2012

SFG in Fall

   It's been a long time since I wrote about my Square Foot Garden boxes.  As the weather gradually cools, the production has been slowing down.  I am no longer getting my favorite Swiss chard at the rate I would like, or  the eggplants.   Strawberries are still producing, and I am still picking and using carrots.  I miss the peak of summer when I could get Swiss chard and an eggplant to use in my lunch every single day and the garden looked as if nothing has been harvested.

   Now that it's October, and the morning low is in the low 40s, things are slowing down.  That's just nature's way.  The focus is shifted to the fall/winter crops.  I did convert my Corn Box into Winter Greens Box at the end of August.  I pulled out all the corn plants, replenished the soil with compost that I had been "cooking" in the corner of the backyard, and planted the box with some chrysanthemum plants and veggie seeds.

   You can see the red and yellow mums in the corners and the seedlings in many of the squares.  I have Japanese winter greens, radish, carrots, lettuce mix up.  I've also planted spinach seeds, but they are not up yet.  The Japanese greens are said to grow even in winter, and cold weather improves the flavor.  I am looking forward to having fresh greens in winter.  I use them in so many things in my cooking.

   On the far end of the photo above, you can see my three pots of flowering kale plants.  The lower leaves turn beautiful shades of orange and pink, while the center is starting to grow pink rosettes. ^^

   When I was growing up in Japan, chrysanthemums were everywhere in fall.  There were chrysanthemum festivals and shows (exhibits).  They came in so many shapes and colors, I loved going to those juried shows as a child.  I still love them for their long-lasting and cold hardiness.  And I love the distinct scent of the leaves and flowers.

   Here's a look at the old Spring Veggies Box.  It produced all summer long and still looking quite wonderful with some second crops growing.  The marigold and broccoli are getting huge.  I have the second crop of peas and lettuce mix.  I still have a lot of carrots left.  The Swiss chard has been my favorite and the chicks' favorite.  ^^

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