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Hard freeze

Fall flirted with us for three glorious weeks. Then the barely-almost frosts disappeared with multiple nights in the 20s --- our first hard freeze.

The last green peppers escaped me but I picked broccoli side shoots frozen solid and cooked them before they thawed. Now we're down to lettuce, kale, and (possibly) brussels sprouts harvests out of the garden for the rest of the winter. But that's alright --- I'm looking forward to snow!

Posted Tue Nov 13 07:15:24 2018 Tags:
Installing new window in a trailer.
Installing a small window to increase the natural light costs about 50 dollars.
Posted Mon Nov 12 06:01:04 2018 Tags:
Crocus bulbs

The biggest reason I rushed to harvest my carrots is because I had that spot earmarked to turn into a flower bed. Two bags of crocuses have been waiting for months to go into the ground there. So as soon as the carrots came out, the crocuses went in.

Black cat

Huckleberry "helped" with the project, which means he sat on the carrot tops and made it difficult to use them as mulch over my crocus bulbs. I eventually got the job done anyway.

Well, except for deciding what else to plant in my new flower bed for summer and fall color. Ideas for useful or at least low-work perennials to plant in a very deer-trafficked spot?

Posted Sun Nov 11 06:00:35 2018 Tags:
Running Honda mower dry for the Winter.

I almost forgot to run the Honda mower dry before she goes into Winter hibernation.

Posted Sat Nov 10 06:00:57 2018 Tags:
Carrot harvest

With some care, it's quite possible to over-winter carrots. But I've found the flavor is best if you instead harvest them after the weather has turned cold but before the ground has started to freeze.

I've been pulling the biggest carrots here and there for a couple of months now, but Wednesday I decided it was time to take the rest out of the ground.

Carrot cleaning

I planted an area about a quarter as large as I used to back in Virginia, which meant it only took about half an hour to clean them all up. An assembly line made the process more efficient, adding to the fast work.

I scrubbed in the filthy bowl to the right, rinsed in the cleaner water in the middle, then let the carrots drip dry in the steamer on the upper left while I processed another batch. The carrots on the towel are either small or injured in some matter --- I'll eat those quickly. Then I ended up with two big covered bowls to store in the fridge for winter meals.

Posted Fri Nov 9 06:00:51 2018 Tags:
Using submersible pump to clean out footer water.

The submersible pump does a good job at draining the water from our foundation.

Posted Thu Nov 8 06:01:25 2018 Tags:
Mini moat

"How's your wood-stove alcove project going?" --- various people

We were almost done with the digging...then it set in to rain. An inch and three quarters later, we didn't have an excavation project, we had a moat.

At first, Mark and I were just going to wait for the water to soak into the soil. But we seem to be on an every-other-day rain schedule at the moment and I'm not a very patient person. So Mark dug out a sump pump. Stay tuned to see if it works!

Posted Wed Nov 7 06:00:50 2018 Tags:
Blue Vates Kale does not bolt?

My Mom tried Dwarf Blue Vates kale this year.

Anna noticed that it did not go to seed, so she pulled it out of the chicken coop and replanted it to see if it will come back next year.

Some perennial kale can live up to 5 or 6 years.

Posted Tue Nov 6 06:00:55 2018 Tags:
Late ripening peppers

I go back and forth about what to do with late-ripening peppers. Mark and I vastly prefer sweet, red peppers over their immature green form. But if you pick all of the green peppers before the first frost, many shrivel-ripen, not quite tasting as good as they would have if simply eaten green.

This year, with light, spotty frosts on the horizon in early October, I decided to be a gambler and only pick the fruits that were at least partially ripe. Sure enough, the plants were only lightly nipped and fruits continued ripening, giving me two more harvests to date. Success!

Posted Mon Nov 5 06:00:52 2018 Tags:
Baby Spinach plant.

Our spinach crop is a little bare this year.

Some things to do next time will be to increase nitrogen and loosen the soil 12 inches deep to help the tap root get established.

Posted Sun Nov 4 06:00:52 2018 Tags:

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