‘Twas an odd fall. Despite not being overly warm (thank goodness), we didn’t have a frost until late in the game (average local first frost is October 15). Garden-wise, this meant that many plants that would succumb to frost, like peppers and eggplant, hung around for a long time. We almost skipped a frost and went straight to a freeze.
We’ve also had continued vole trouble at the garden, which prompted Matthew to dig all the parsnips, carrots, and celeriac, which, sans voles, could have been “stored” in the ground for awhile.
The timing of the cold and the root vegetable harvest overwhelmed our second refrigerators (plural, because my MIL also has a second refrigerator — crazy, right?), and we have two 5-gallon buckets of parsnips out in the garage. Our second fridge is also extra stuffed because we have most of a bushel of apples in there, as well as some cabbage waiting to become kraut.
The sudden turn to wintry weather also meant the return of plastic on our sun porch windows. We knocked this task out last night, after Gabriel went to bed. The job was complicated by the fact that after using the same plastic for two winters, I’d decided [somewhat] that it was time for new plastic.
Of course, the only old plastic that I had actually discarded was the sheet that covered the biggest side of our sun porch, and none of the new plastic that we had on hand came in large enough sheets to do the job. In the end, we taped two new pieces together for the big wall, and then reused the two sheets for the side windows (now on it’s third year).
The trickiest part about reusing the window plastic is that you need new tape every year, and it’s hard to find just the tape (and if you do find it, you pay nearly as much for the tape as you do for a kit with plastic plus tape). Now that we’ve learned this lesson, we plan on ordering the tape online, ahead of time, in future years (of course every year we tell ourselves that maybe next year we won’t be dealing with this because we’ll be in a house).
Among other plants (citrus, figs, and herbs), the sun porch is housing this baby:
A “dumpster dive” potted Meyer lemon that I found abandoned in an alley last year. (Fortunately, it was next to, and not in, the dumpster — not sure I could have wrangled it out.) As a thank you for rescuing it and giving it a good home, this little guy produced 25 lemons this year!
We’re enjoying lemon bars and lemony salad dressing. G enjoys being the official lemon picker when we’re ready to use one.
The porch task took almost two hours, but I’m glad we went ahead and finished it last night (even though it meant opening a new window plastic kit to scavenge the tape) when it was seventy degrees on the porch instead of today when it’s forty degrees!