Saturday, November 2, 2013

What’s happening in the early November garden

Cabbage in pot
Saturday, November 2, 2013

Well, we had our first hard frost on October 25th in our Zone 6 garden.  The temperature got down to 28 degrees F.  It was cold enough to bite the tomatoes, eggplant, sunflower, zucchini, morning glory, dahlias, and jalapeño plants.  

The zucchini is done.  It really has not produced for the last few weeks anyway.  The rest of the pepper plants (Ancho, cayenne, pimento elite, sweet red banana, or the jalapeño in the garden bed) did not seem to be affected by the frost.

I could have used a fabric cover to protect these cold sensitive veggies and they would have been fine for this temperature.

We had already harvested all the basil.  If we had not, the leaves would have been killed and turned black.

There was not enough damage to the tomatoes, eggplant or pepper plants to halt the fruit production.  The next 10 days do not show any temperatures down to freezing so I will leave them growing.  The next time the forecast has the temperatures going into the 20’s, I will harvest all the peppers, tomatoes, and eggplant fruits and call it a season for these summer veggies.
Some of the last of the summer veggies-peppers, tomatoes, eggplant
You could bring the peppers indoors and they will continue fruiting for weeks and put them back out in the spring to get a head start on summer.  I get enough hot peppers off each of the plants to eat and freeze that I won’t do that this year. 

You could also put the potted tomatoes, eggplant and peppers in a greenhouse and lengthen the season for at least another 4 weeks. 

The cold season crops like lettuce, cabbage, kale, broccoli, collards, spinach, onions, mustard, sorrel are very happy.  The celery is still going strong.  It doesn’t seem to be affected by heat or cold.  We harvest from it year round.

The rest of the herbs are doing very well-thyme, savory, oregano, chives, dill, rosemary, sage, bay, parsley, lavender, mint.  

Don't forget your local Farmers Market if you want local and freshest produce in season.  Many are open all winter long!

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