Saturday, September 20, 2008

Unwelcome Visitor - Jack Frost!

The weather folk were predicting temps in the low 30's/high 20's for Thursday night, so when Madman and I got home from work we made a mad dash for the garden and performed the annual Northern Ritual known as "covering the garden."
We picked everything pickable, and threw sheets and tarps over everything else that we wanted to try to save.
Decisions were made:
The beans can go - we have plenty in the freezer. No sheets for you...
The kale, chard, broccoli, and brussels sprouts will survive. No sheets for you, either...
Carrots will be fine. Skip them.
Ditto the leeks.
We concentrated our efforts on the winter squash, the cucumbers, and the peppers outside the hoophouse. Then we buttoned up the hoophouse as tight as we could, and fired up a small kerosene heater we have for it.
Then we had homemade pizza for supper. The flour, yeast, olive oil, and salt for the crust were store-bought, and the cheese (but our LOCAL cheese is Cabot! How lucky is that?), but the onion, pepper, herbs, and tomatoes all came from our garden, and the bacon was from a pig raised by my dad. We take pride in our pizza!

Friday morning we heard it had gotten down to 27 degrees. We went out to survey the devastation...
Survivors included the brussels sprouts:
the corn:
the leeks:
and the kale:
The hoophouse protected the peppers:
DOA: the squash and cukes - we had buttercup, butternut, acorn, jarradale, and delicata. All toast...

the tomatilloes - that's a mixed blessing... (See this post) I had picked about as many as we'll need to get through the winter - now we have to try to pick up every blasted one of those little fruits...

While the hoophouse had protected the peppers, the tomatoes weren't quite so lucky - they got nipped:

If the weather stays halfway decent for a while, we should be able to keep getting tomatoes.

And the broccoli and cabbage survived just fine - you can't hardly kill broccoli...
I had a picture of the thoroughly dead beans, but lost it somewhere in the processing/uploading. I went back out to take another pic, but Madman had been busy - he'd already pulled the plants and added them to the compost pile.
So, we froze the rest of the beans we'd picked, and we'll be having the beet greens for supper tonight. A big pot of tomatoes is cooking down on the stove.

Fall is definitely here...



AnnaMarie said...

Wow, dinner looks good!!! We did the composting of the vines ourselves today. Fall is for sure here but it's my favorite season so I'm a pretty happy camper.

Oh the local cheese being Cabot? Definitely was on the PRO side of the move for us *lolol*

Sandy said...

Your garden is very impressive! It's a shame that the frost has to be so early this year!
That pizza looks so delicious! I have been hankering to make some homemade myself and this just put me over the edge!

Jen said...

Sorry 'bout your DOA veggies (all those squashes!). That homemade pizza looks amazing, though! :)

Laurie said...

Remarkable. We have escaped frost so far. Probably not for much longer.

I can' tell I'm hungry when the pizza looks insurmountable delicious.

Thalia said...

Your garden looks wonderful - someday I'd love to move back to New England (like Vermont!) and have a piece of land to garden. Sorry to hear about the squashes biting it after the frost, they are some of my favorite Autumn delights. (I have a sweet tooth, and butternut squash totally hits it!)