A Fallen Fall Garden and a Happy Halloween

 Hi, everybody!  It’s been awhile.  The hot (pardon the pun) topic around these parts is the weather.  I’ve never seen anything like it here in Greenville.  We have had what seems like 3 months with no rain to amount to anything.   Couple that with the fact that the temperature has been in the mid to low 80’s most of that time (right now it is November 3rd   at 3:49 in the afternoon with a temperature of 82’!) and what you get is a completely non-productive garden.  What a bummer.  I planted all those little seeds and watered diligently.  Then, voila!  The lettuce came up with a flourish.  And perished in a matter of weeks.  The extreme heat and drought just got it.  So, after a proper mourning period, on to other things.  I am very happy that I did not plant broccoli, Brussels sprouts or kale.  I started to buy plants and seeds to do just that when good sense prevailed.  Hallelujah; I was saved from myself!  I suppose that I will have to make do with brassica and lactuca from local offerings.  We are so fortunate to have a wonderful farmers market which stays open year round.  It’s the one on Rutherford Road and it’s been there for years and years.  My mother and I used to visit it bright and early most Saturday mornings.  I remember buying wonderful hand crafted yeast rolls and yards and yards of Christmas garland from Wanda, hosta, crepe myrtles and wreaths from Susan and countless other artisans with wonderful products.  I will carry on the tradition which she started and let you know next blog post what treasures awaited me!

Changing gears, it’s Halloween night, around 7:30, I’m driving into my neighborhood when, wow!  I see huge numbers of children frolicking door to door.  I can only imagine the earlier crowds, they must have been enormous.  It looked as if everyone was having such a good time.  There were throngs of children ringing door bells, masses of parents taking picture after picture and strings of delighted homeowners giving out fists full of candy.  The health conscious couple two doors down had a beautiful basket of red apples on their front porch with a delightful handwritten sign inviting little ghosts and goblins to help themselves!  How very progressive.  Well, we had perfect conditions for the perfect evening.  It was simply a gorgeous night and I was so thankful to have witnessed it.  The skies were clear and the temp was still in the mid 70’s.  I can remember having to bundle with scarves, gloves and a heavy coat when I was a child. I was always sad if I had to cover my costume.  I loved pretending to be a Disney princess. I can still envision dressing up as Snow White when I was 6 or 7 years old: blue bodice, yellow skirt, black wig…those were the days!

How was your Halloween?  Is your fall garden prospering?   Drop me a line and let me know.  Until later, I wish you great gardens and every happiness.  Thank you for stopping by.

Coming next:  Countdown to Thanksgiving!

 

 

Fall Garden Update

Welcome back to the hive.  Things are changing in the last few days.  We are eagerly anticipating rain as we have not any in so long.  We still have to water like crazy.  The lettuce seeds that germinated are struggling along with the prolific, yet tender, chive shoots.  They are coming along, but seem to crave a break from our hot, humid days and evenings.

Below is a photo of the tender, young lettuce plants.  I will need to thin them before long.  There is an art to that and I will show you how my father taught me to do it.  It works every time.

lettuce-seeds

The following photo shows the chive plants that have grown at a pretty fast pace.  These are going to require some very deliberate thinning in a few weeks as well.

chive-seeds

I have determined that all the other seeds were just too old.  Nothing else sprouted.  It was very disappointing, but not all together unexpected.   So, back to the drawing board we go.  I do want to have more options in the fall garden, but am a little hesitant to go full throttle.  I am going to stick to using only a couple varieties of lettuces and flat leaf Italian parsley seeds.  I will keep it really simple.  This week will be about finding sources for new seed packets.  I had a little trouble doing so this past summer.  The big box stores are great for some things, but not for unique seed offerings.

That said, there is a terrific little feed and seed store in the neighboring town of Travelers Rest.  TR is just up the road a few miles and chocked full of the most quaint little shops and restaurants.  Poised alongside this picturesque spot is the popular Swamp Rabbit Trail.  If you’re from Upstate South Carolina, you know all about the Swamp Rabbit Trail. If not, check out its homepage.  What a beautiful 21 mile non motorized path that runs from the heart of Greenville along the Reedy River all the way to the middle of Travelers Rest.  For me, a perfect get away on a beautiful autumn day.

Once I wend my way up to TR, I will let you know what I found and catch you up on the hive.  I’d love to hear your stories.   What are you doing to prepare for your fall garden?