I've got to admit, this has been an intriguing season for Mr. Bitterman and Myself.
From great promise early on in the season, we lost just about everything in Nick, the top garden, to what I can only imagine was depleted soil, while everything in Nora, the lower garden, took off -- except -- the tomatoes. (We did get a few Hatch chiles from seed in Nick, but nothing worth writing home about.)
As for the dearth of tomatoes, I don't know if it was the varietal were growing: President (zilch, must have known about the campaigns), Early Girl (robust plant, small yield), Cherokee Black (nothing), Better Boy (nothing) and something without a tag that spit out one or two mini's by season's end, or some other problem. (Potassium, the ghost of my grandfather says, It's Always Potassium.)
But -- but -- in Nora we did get some Shishito Peppers, a few small Poblanos, some heirloom beans and a bumper crop of cucumbers and Acorn Squash.
The Acorn Squash was wonderful.
Bitterman couldn't figure our problems out, try as he might, while Furious George ran next door every day at 3 pm for cocktail hour with the BSC Neighbor. They appear to have worked out their early season problems over a love of Fox News and high end vodka.
He's worthless for the rest of the day. Insists everything is Yuge and The Best. Believe Me, The Best. Then he goes pub crawling with some guy named Billy who is desperate to have young women hug him.
We did get a great crop of celery throughout the season. The stuff was tough as shoe leather unless you cooked it for days in a split pea soup pot.
Still, it was fun.
We did learn something however:
I figure that -- Once You've Got Celery ...
You've ALWAYS got celery. (The root structure took up half the barrel!)
The stuff really did take up half the barrel. I was amazed and can only wonder if we'll have celery again, whether we want it or not, next season. I do like to be surprised.
Nora and the compost barrel both did well this year. The compost barrel was something I bought on a whim and Becky got really into the idea of creating our own compost. Then, one day she opened the access door was hit by an intriguing smell, an army of gnats and something that appeared to be crawling toward her from HP Lovecraft.
It appears that I am now in complete charge of the barrel.
The growth in Nora (except, yes, the tomatoes) was great this season and we had a lot of fun with it. There were always more cucumbers (ALWAYS MORE CUCUMBERS) and the great Acorn Squash I mentioned.
I'm still determined to recreate my Grandfather Moody's garden with the six foot tall tomato plants. There was a picture once of my Grandmother standing beside one of those plants. I'll post it when I find it. The damned thing has to be around here somewhere.
After Cleaning. Two Bean plants and an Acorn Squash with Three Possibilities still Survive.
Nick -- cleaned and ready for the winter ...
And, under the protection of the meanest damned gnome you've ever seen ...
Seems sort of naked out there ...
Next up -- figuring out a way to restore healthy soil to Nick without complete replacement. I'm figuring Cow and Compost and Eco Compost plus the leaves that are falling from the trees. We'll just grind those right in.
I wonder if the local Tool Rental shop will trade a chain saw for a rototiller?
Worth a shot.
Now that you mention it, yes, yes I will ...