Living A Simplified Life!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

My Next Garden Winter Crops

As I've sat here and watched the efforts of this year's garden withering away in our triple digit heat, I've been depressed over my first attempts at gardening. I've made it a point to go out and water everything after 7pm at night in the hopes of pulling everything through. After the tomato plants get a drink of water, they usually will stand up, sometimes not straight and tall but at least they try. Many of their leaves are now turning brown and wilting from the sun. So far, there have been three ripe Roma tomatoes, and something has managed to put holes in every one of them. There are still two green ones on the vines and I am watching them closely.

The cucumber plants had little blossoms on them but so far I'm not seeing any development of cucumbers yet. I would have thought there would be some by now. I'm afraid the jalapeno peppers are toast!  there is but one plant that may make it, but the others appear to be either dead or dying.

It looks like only one of my pumpkin vines has survived as well and that is the one I planted in a pot! The ones out in the ground have either just shriveled up and died or something decided they were good to eat. As for my herbs, well, no cilantro, Basel, or mint for me! They are all gone too!

I guess I'm not alone, I've been hearing complaints from many of those with lots more experience than me saying they are having the same problems.  I guess we will all be looking at planting some things here shortly for winter crops in hopes that we can end up with some produce for all our efforts.

I do know one thing, I am going to order an AeroGarden or one something like it, that I can use to grow salad fixings at least in the house this winter. has some fantastic prices on them!

The picture of this garden is for the Gourmet Herb seed kit, but you can grow tomatoes, lettuce, even flowers in your AeroGarden. They offer a variety of types of seed kits that you can order for all kinds of things! 

I am doing an experiment which will be interesting to see if it works or not. I read where someone grew potatoes in a pillowcase, so I figured I have nothing to lose at this point, might as well give it a try.  I've also heard of using old car tires and plastic trash cans, but there there was some discussion on one of my yahoo groups about how that might not be such a good idea because of toxins possibly leaking from either the rubber or the plastic and contaminating your potatoes. So far I am getting sprouts shooting up!  Of course every time they break the surface you are to cover them up with more dirt, compost and natural mulch. I may actually end up getting some potatoes out of my efforts anyway!

I think next year, I will attempt to do some hanging tomato plants on the edge of the patio where they will get less direct sunlight. Either that or I am going to have to devise some methods of putting up a tent structure with garden netting over the tops of my beds so that if we have as hot a summer next year as we've had this year, I am able to provide some shade for them.

So now I am looking to see what fall crops I can grow in zone 6 & 7 for Oklahoma that I like and will actually eat. I guess I'll try putting out some Cilantro again (that burned up also along with my basil) and more cucumbers for sure along with some more tomatoes, summer and winter squash, more bell peppers and jalapenos and try for a few more pumpkins!  I see where they say you can grow several types of beans, as well as sweet corn and egg plant, but I think I'll pass on those.

Beets. broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Irish potatoes, lettuce, onions, garlic, and spinach are all considered semi-hardy for another crop. It looks like the onions and garlic wouldn't be ready to harvest until next spring and June so we'll see about doing those.

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