Humble Garden

ReSkilling for future food independence

After the Harvest

Posted by Nika On November - 10 - 2008

I have been slowly cleaning the garden of plants that should not overwinter (tomatoes, diseased plants) and pulling out stakes, cleaning out plastic ties.

The chickens have done a great job of converting plant matter into eggs. They have cleaned up a lot of the debris. I will be clearing off the spent landscaping fabric and then overlaying with goat and llama manure. I will top that over with straw.

I am going to be using a bean trellis-pup-tent thing I made this year over a part of one of the beds to see how much I can grow in a small cold frame.

How is your garden doing now?

4 Responses to “After the Harvest”

  1. Heidi says:

    I spent time in my garden last weekend cleaning up and cleaning out. I still haven’t winterized anything yet as it was near 60 most of the week! Odd for November in Maine that’s for sure. Sounds like the next week will be the opportune time to start spreading dried, shredded leaves throughout the garden and winterizing my rose bushes.

    It’s always a little sad when pulling those dead annuals and seeing your perennials in such a sad state. This is the first year I’ve grown Swiss Chard in my flower garden. They did very well, despite being planted so late and I was AMAZED at the root when I pulled it out of the garden. Do you grow Swiss Chard?

    Good luck with the cold frame. If done correctly, the rewards are terrific.

  2. Nika says:

    Heidi: I grew chard last year – great stuff. Yeah, when I pulled the annuals it was very sad – summer flew past criminally fast.

    Some of those roots are really amazing. Some of my tomatoes had huge root arrays.

    You know, come to think of it, I should have paid a LOT of attention to the roots of my various plants – in a diagnostics way. I should have shot them too for later comparison to what sort of root structure they SHOULD have.. maybe this would help me optimize the growing conditions better.

    Hey wait, they are still there, in the compost pile, I think I am going to go do that this next weekend (no light when I get home during week). A post mortem of sorts. I wonder if I sound completely nuts! Forgive me if I do :-).

    I wish, a lot, that I had gone into a field where I could do horticultural sorts of experiements and such – I read that soil science has been in a free fall in recent years – now when we need this understanding more than ever.

    In a world where farmers use roundup ready seeds and nuke their fields with roundup and other broad spectrum nasties – the soil chemistry and soil ecology really exists only in an artifical state, wholly corrupted by non-natural systems. This is likely why soil sciences are falling – the priority has not been on a healthy soil ecology its been on getting Monsanto funding. Ok, lets not get me started this early in the day :-)

  3. Erika says:

    I put my garden to bed a few weeks ago. I have some herbs that I left out to see if they winter over, some onions and leeks that I just need to pull and do something with, and then the rainbow chard, which I’m hoping will hold out until Thanksgiving.

    I’m still hoping to be able to pick up some bone meal and some composted manure to stir into the soil with the shredded leaves.

    Now the thoughts begin to turn to planning next year’s gardens. While it’s sad to see the gardening come to an end, I’m excited to spend time going over my notes from this year and seeing the seed catalogs start rolling in. It gets much too cold here in the frozen tundra to do any kind of winter gardening- I hope you have good luck with your cold frame!

  4. Nika says:

    E: sorry this reply took so long – had to upgrade my blogging software and also some plugins – better now.

    Right now our winter garden is pretty much just snow and ice – didnt get around to the covered part (work was chaos and then I was laid off and things have been crazy since then)

    Did you veggies make it to turkey day?

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About Me

We are a family of 5, including Nika, Ed, Q (14), KD (7), and Baby Oh (4). We garden 1024 square feet of raised beds plus assorted permacultural plantings. We also have 13 LaMancha dairy goats, 40 chickens, and one guard llama.



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