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How to autumn Garden
How I did it: The soil was prepared and in raised beds from the spring. I pulled out the old tomatoes. I've learned that the quality of the late tomatoes is not worth the garden space. I had put in determinate types so they all tomatoed simultaneously anyway. I removed the old beans, broccoli, and onions. I left one broccoli that looks like it will still "head." I amended the soil with compost and some slow release fertilizer. I then planted cool weather crops like spinach, lettuce, radish, peas. Being hopeful, I planted a last cohort of cucumber and beans. With a tarp over the poles they might make it. I trimmed the pole beans away from the fence so that the deer won't eat them as food become more scarce. And then I put in some garlic. The garlic will actually grow thru the winter and should be ready next June. I used organic garlic from the supermarket. I had no luck with "normal garlic" and I think they might put a chemical on it to prevent it from sprouting.
Lessons & tips:
- Pull out anything that looks leggy. The chance it will be productive again is slight.
- Plant fast maturing seeds and varieties.
- Unless you are growing for survival take a bit of risk by planting frost tender varieties right up to the deadline. Life is better with modest risk.
- Make your own compost. There is no better soil amendment. I made one with a cement slab with three bins to rotate vegetable matter.