The ambient temperature dropped to 20 degrees last night — a hard frost.
This morning, while raking the remainders of grass clippings in the yard, I found Swiss chard growing in garden plot five.
Chard will be a centerpiece for tonight’s dinner, most likely in a casserole with rice, onions, chopped chard, garlic, eggs, oregano and Parmesan cheese.
While poorly planned — a place for odds and ends of cherry tomatoes, eggplant, cauliflower, hot peppers and a failed section of bell peppers — it produced early with cherry tomatoes and late with aforementioned chard. I pledge to make a better plan next year.
The section of bell peppers took up more than a third of the space. The seedlings went in fine, with protection from ground threats in the form of six-inch sections of four-inch drainage tile, and mulch. Because of working four jobs in August, it got away from me, producing not a single fruit. I can’t recall a year when my bell peppers have done well. Weeding and watering are two important aspects of growing peppers and I didn’t do either one well. But what do I know? A farmer friend gave us adequate seconds from her farm so we are okay with bell peppers for winter.
Four cherry tomato plants is enough for our household. The four different kinds produced before the main tomato crop and were great in salads until the slicers matured and ripened. The cherries were positioned at the edge of the plot for easy picking from the center path.
The eggplant and cauliflower seedlings were gifts stuck in empty rows. Fairy Tale eggplant is great because of its size and length of time producing. Four plants produced more than we could use. I’ve added Fairy Tale eggplant seeds to my December order and will put them in the indoor planting schedule.
Now that frost has come it will be easier to clear the plot. The plan is to clear it and make a burn pile. It was very windy today, so I’ll save these tasks for another day in this unseasonably warm autumn.