Monday, November 2, 2009

Fall planting

For the past couple of weeks I had been working on getting the fall crops in. Our average first frost in Phoenix is usually the first or second week in December so after the ridiculous summer heat, there's a brief season kind of like spring, as well as the root vegetable crops that overwinter with the frosts.

Spinach, Beets and Lettuce Sprouting

As usual I have more things I want to plant than space to plant them. This year we're growing three kinds of peas including a native type, six kinds of beets (my favorite!), several kinds of disgusting radishes (my husband's favorite), lots of different kinds of lettuces, some onions, lots of herbs, broccoli, carrots and a few experimental cold-tolerant tomatoes as well as some huge cherry tomatoes that over-summered. New this year are cabbages (for kraut), leeks, parsnips, turnips and kohlrabi. I've never had turnips or kohlrabi (to my knowledge) and I know the rule is not to plant things you don't like, but I'm afraid I wouldn't ordinarily like them, but I seem to like eating anything I grow, so maybe it's a better way to get me to like something that might otherwise be revolting.

This sounds like a lot more than it is, some of these varieties only get allocated a square foot or two. Our total vegetable gardening space is only about 250-300 square feet, not including the fruit trees.

Here's one of the garden beds about 10 days ago and again yesterday:

I know it's a bit crowded in there. I know when I'm planting that those tiny seeds a probably a little close but I just can't stop myself. Those plants will just have to get a new sense of personal space. I also decided that flowers aren't a total waste of garden space and put in a few. Here's a better shot of a great little snapdragon.

I hope you all are enjoying your fall gardens (if you live in a place that can grow them) or some time off getting ready for the seed catalogs to arrive!