|Lavender in late fall|
Sunday, November 10, 2019
Well, we are having record cold through the Midwest, setting record low temps across the country for this time of year. The summer veggies are done until next spring. Does that mean the end of the kitchen garden? Nope. There is still much in the garden to enjoy!
The cold season crops have survived the first teens of the year. Kale, lettuce, onions, mustards, chard, carrots and herbs are nice and green. All cold season crops get sweeter when the mercury dips. Cold season crops for your edible garden
It is time, if you haven’t done so already, to pull up the old vines and give them to the compost heap. Only compost those that were free from disease; you don’t want to re-introduce any diseases to your garden next season. I leave seed heads for the birds to snack on for the winter.
If you are gardening in pots, move them up against a wall that gets southern exposure. This will move your effective climate zone up a full zone. If they are on stands or coaster, remove from their stand and set them onto the ground. They will stay much warmer on the ground than suspended off the ground.
Now is a fun time of year to experiment in the kitchen with all the fresh herbs that are available. Parsley, thyme, rosemary, sage, tarragon, bay, lavender, chives are all hardy herbs in November. I have had many Christmas dinners with herbs fresh from the garden.
You can also bring tender perennials like rosemary and bay into the garage or house for the winter. Other veggies I bring in are my pepper plants, celery, goji berry and citrus trees. I keep them in our unheated, insulated garage with a 4' grow light over them.
You can also take a look at all the tomatoes you have put up in freezer bags. If you have more than you know you need, this is the perfect time of year to do some water bath canning. I go through and any left over from last year, I make into sauce. Time to make homemade tomato sauce!
As even more freezing weather comes our way, you can extend the season for lettuce and greens through the winter by using a portable green house or making your own hoop house. Extend the season with protection for plants
The biggest killer of veggies in greenhouses? Getting too hot! Make sure you crack open your green house when the temps get above freezing and the sun is shining.
I have a little portable green house I put over my Earthboxes. I will still have lettuce until spring.