I spent some time in the garden this week (in between rain storms), cleaning up the last of the summer crops, harvesting potatoes and onions, and transplanting small starter plants from the nursery bed into their roomier winter beds.
Thinning the carrot patch. Sweet babies!
I like to leave my carrots in place all winter until I need them. This works as long as the ground doesn't freeze solid, which (fingers crossed) shouldn't happen until January. And if we miss a few, it's not a big deal, it just means we have fresh carrots in the spring when the snow melts.
Dragon (purple carrot).
We've got lots of different greens out there, flourishing in the cool fall weather:
Red Russian Kale.
Red Ace beets (the tops are delicious in salads).
Arugula (my personal favourite).
A variety of hardy lettuces.
Our summer was a little too cool for heat loving crops like squash, so our harvest will be smaller than usual, but they'll still make for some yummy soups, stews, and desserts (and maybe even a jack-o-lantern or two).
"Sunshine" (kabocha squash).
"Rouge vif D'etampes" (the original Cinderella pumpkin).
In addition to the usual turnips, celeriac, and assorted root crops, we've also got leeks...
...some herbs (although the basil is looking chilly)...
Dill seed head.
...and a few heat-loving stragglers.
And, of course, what would the winter garden be without the brassica family? Is it a coincidence that they look so gorgeous in the rain? I don't think so.
Fall is also the time when the most revered crop goes in. I didn't end up with much of a garlic crop this year (one head actually), as the resident vermin dug it all up and ate it during an early spring foray into the garden (I warned them that I considered that pre-seasoning, but they didn't seem worried).
I buy locally grown garlic from the organic market here to use as seed, and it's excellent. This didn't look like quite enough to me, so I had to go back and get more after taking these photos.
Now I plan to sit back and enjoy some cozy winter meals while dreaming about pulling armloads of garlic under the warm July sun.