Sunday, September 28, 2008

Fall Food Harvest

The end of the growing season is here and at Quaking Aspen we are working to harvest and process some of the September abundance. While we have only a 3 month growing season many of the plants we will store through the winter until things begin growing next year. Today Leah and I bundled and hung to dry huge quantities of herbs. Some of which are for teas such as Catnip, Lemon Balm, and Agastache and other such as Basil, Oregano, Sage, Chives, Thmye, and Tarragon for cooking. It was also time to harvest potatoes, winter squash, rhubarb, horseradish, cucumbers, sunflowers, and the last of our tomatoes and eggplant.

This year we were too busy to spend much time in the garden at all. I think I put in less than 10 hours planting, watering (and we water by hand), mulching/composting, etc. So while our harvest may not be huge this year, I am always amazed by the what we are able to harvest. It seems like every year the garden begins to produce even more with less work as the perennials begin to fill in. That is part of the beauty of the lazy approach to gardening adopted by permaculture. While we did spend much time establishing our perennial gardens in the early years we now can step back and relax knowing that if we take off for a few weeks or a month in the middle of summer, our gardens will be fine and still produce a harvest of something. With a little extra work we can produce much more.

Perhaps next year Leah and I will have some time to really plant up a bumper veggie garden. And let's also hope for a good fruit year...actually any fruit would be good.

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