Why I Garden #18

French Tarragon, drying

We had the first hard freeze of the season last week. There were no light frosts, the low temps went solidly below zero (Celsius) in one night. The local meteorologist gave us ample warning so we pulled up tomato plants, harvested squash and chile and tender herbs. It was an exciting end to a full year of watering, weeding and tending. Tomatoes and tomatillos are slowly ripening, herbs are hanging to dry in the kitchen and apples are being sauced or fermented.

Every year is an experiment and we are slowly learning what grows well (or easily) in our yard. Of course, garden planning has started for next year. I've planted alliums (garlic, onions and shallots) for next spring. Soon I'll shovel a healthy layer of manure onto garden beds and the compost pile. The trees have yet to drop all their leaves, they may sense their upcoming pruning and are stalling for time. I've sketched out a plan for a cold-frame in my mind and I'm browsing the recycled hardware store for parts.

Here's a toast to a fine season of gardening and to the next one.

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