Monday, August 30, 2010

Bye, bye tomatoes, hello new season!

Four months ago, I never would have believed that I would have eaten so many sungold tomatoes I could barely stand the thought of another. But after just a couple of months of having quarts of these each week, we were giving up. The ground under the plants was littered with fruit that had gotten overripe and fallen off. The red tomato plants that shared the bed were getting too little care as well. Luckily, and maybe as nature planned, it is time to plant fall crops, and I needed an empty bed. So, out came the tomato plants in one of our beds this weekend!

Big beautiful plants, naked on the bottom half but full and green on top, each sporting some fruit and blossoms, ripped out by the roots. All the fruit, green and red, (that had not been pecked by birds or repeatedly stabbed by leaf footed beetles and stink bugs) were saved for the kitchen. All except those overly prolific sundgolds, they went right to the chicken coop. The plants will be disposed of, to prevent overwintering of any diseases. As many fallen fruit as possible were raked up and fed to the hens.

I was left with a clean, open, fresh garden canvas! I had a few broccoli plants I had picked up last week, so in they went, with lots of water. This week I hope to find the kale transplants I like, and will put them in as well. (I have faith that the hurricanes on the horizon won't hit us with too hard a punch. If they do, I will replant.) Seed packets will find their way outside in the next week or two.

Another bed of tomatoes was left for an additional couple weeks of harvests, as I make my final decisions on fall plantings.

I love a new season in the garden!