Tuesday, July 19, 2011
This is the month when the "To Do" List is longer then the hours of the day.
In July, I am still planting and caring for plants, but the harvest has also begun. A double whammy of garden chores. But the delight in going out with a dishpan and choosing my supper makes it worthwhile. There can hardly be a cheaper, safer, and more delicious food source than a summer garden! Some would disagree with the cheaper part, but seeds are inexpensive. As long as you don't need to amend your soil much or buy sprays, gardening is a cheap way to provide groceries. But even if it wasn't cheaper, I think the flavor would still be worthwhile.
This month we harvest green beans, corn, onions, zucchini, potatoes, peppers, tomatoes, raspberries, and garlic. My cabbage and broccoli are so late, we are still harvesting them this month. It may be work but this is the season that gardeners dream about all through the winter!
The choice of what we should eat today among the many choices growing in the garden is a luxury. Of course, when there is also many veggies shouting for your attention to pick them before they go to waste, it feels more like work than luxury. Still, I love the variety!
This is also the season that I find difficult as a blogger. There is so much material to write about. I'm constantly writing posts in my head about what we are growing, eating, learning, and enjoying. But after living it, there is no time left to write about it. I know in the middle of the winter, I'll be looking for topics to post about. But for now I'll write a dozen posts in my head each day, and maybe get one up occasionally. It is why I'm only getting this posted on the 19th of July! Any of you other gardening/homesteading bloggers face this in the summer?
The flower garden too, is at it's peak. All my favorite perennials seem to bloom in July and August! If I was not so busy in the vegetable garden, I could have a cut flower bouquet in every room!
Some of the garden tasks for this month are rather obvious. Harvest what needs picked. Remove the weeds. Water thirsty plants. Dead head perennial flowers. But in the midst of the busyness, I need to remember the less obvious tasks. One of my goals is to extend our harvest for as long as possible. That means planting now for a fall harvest. With that goal in mind, here are a few tasks for this month in our garden, besides all those obvious ones!
1. Late planting of carrots, beets, lettuce, spinach, kale, and beans.
2. Purchase broccoli plants to set out by end of the month or first of next month.
3. Add compost and lime to soil to prepare plot intended for broccoli.
4. Harvest garlic, setting aside the nicest bulbs for planting in September.
5. Plant buckwheat as a cover crop, when an area of the garden is finished.
Of course, this is for our zone 6 garden. What are your plans for this month? What am I missing?