With the weather about to take a decidedly chillier turn, it was time to get the garden tidied and ready for winter. The days are shortening, and we try to fit in as many chores in as we can while there’s still light out.
There was plenty of leaves, limbs and debris to pick up after the storm, minor tasks considering the damage elsewhere.
The celeriac and parsnips are being stored in-ground. Their raised bed received a thick layer of leaf mulch, and a low hoop cover of plastic.
The winter greens bed — containing salad green, chard, kale, Fun Jen, and chicories (Brindisina, Galantina, and Pan di Zucchero) — is also now under plastic cover. Above: The chicories may need to be planted earlier next year to get full growth, but we were thrilled to see the Pan di Zucchero at least begin to furl.
A harvest of kales, chard, and a mix of Brindisina and Galatina chicory. When the fridge is full, the chard and kale can be kept in buckets of water for at least several days, until ready to use. The chicory was prepared much as we learned recently while in Puglia.
Under threat of a hard frost, we dug up the King Richard leeks, an early variety. The King Sieg leeks are being stored in-ground in another covered bed.
The carrots were thinned, and the rest left in-ground in the same bed as the leeks. We also pulled a couple of the larger daikon to see how they were faring.
This is the first time we’re growing daikon; their leaves have a most orderly growth pattern. We left the majority of them in-ground under a light row cover, but it remains to be seen how much frost they can tolerate.
We grew several varieties of Tokyo turnips, but were stymied by an infestation of aphids. The roots ended up completely pockmarked below the soil level.
The fennel continued to produce tenaciously off of the roots left behind from previous harvests, and gave us one last final picking before clearing the bed. Along with the daikon, we also grew Green Meat radishes for the first time.
Like Watermelon radishes, these Green Meat ones are suitable for winter storage. We enjoy them sliced thinly in salads and sandwiches, and are meant to be great for pickling and delicious roasted.
Many thanks to Maury for keeping our garden growing while we were away!