26 October, 2011

Put The Garden to Bed

One of the great things about being sort of laid off/not really/way less hours is that you have  time for tasks that don't always get done.  I  am usually happy to ignore the garden until the balmy two weeks in February we get in the Willamette Valley that sucker-punches you into believing Spring is just round the corner.

But - really - it is better to put away the tomato cages, take the hoe and shovel back to the garage, and tuck the plant detritus away into the compost pile
This year, we had an almost-frost last night where the Dizzy Lizzies were limp this morning but perked up later. The Nasturtiums also almost laid down and died but they are still with us.

We haven't had too much in the way of rain so far this fall so I wanted to clean up the garden before it got too wet to do anything.

Tomato cages stacked neatly on left. Compost pile is contained. Weeds turned over.

I wanted to spread a pile of lime on the garden this year. I think (but I never test) my pH is off. Some of my tomatoes had a brownish spot at the end. I think if I spread lime this fall for the winter rains to work in and then spread it again in the spring - well - who knows - I might even test the pH.
Last of the Mohicans. I'll leave them in the garage so we can enjoy some for the next month.
We won't stay at freezing temperatures  after another day or two. I'm not sure what the mean temp. is in Canbyland but it's usually nearly 50' during the Winter.

See the frost damage on the leaves?
My last crops to pick. The Butternut Squash and the Acorn Squash.
I grew up (Willamette valley) waiting until the first frost to pick these but I was recently told I should pick the butternut when there are no more green stripes. And pick the acorn when that little yellow-orange spot on the bottom occurs. As in, BEFORE the frost.   Any thoughts?

The raspberries still have a berry or two left for tasty breaks.

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