This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. But Skippy always stood by me and was a great friend. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps and garden with me. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees and berry bushes, chickens and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Friday, December 12, 2008

dreary December

Its such a dark and dreary time. The sun sets at 4:15 now. And with the thick cloud cover it is truly gloomy. Many parts of Massachusetts had a serious ice storm last night and will be without power for days. But just rain here - buckets and buckets full of rain.

I haven't been in a garden in many days, but took some time this morning to go out and photograph in the mud. I took photos of my community plot, my home garden and Gretta's farm.

My community plot:
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field by gardens 2

I tried to edit these photos to brighten and enliven them. But the gardens just aren't bright and they aren't lively. The only thing apparently alive in my plot is the rye and clover cover crop. My wheel barrow is overturned in the middle and I've left a few tools here and there.

There is some wild life around the dreary gardens: the birds gather in flocks and chatter with each other. They scatter as I walk through. And Skippy and I find evidence of coyotes (piles of scat) at the periphery of the gardens. That means there must be rabbits and voles around too. But most of the color in the gardens is the cheap green plastic fences and the bright orange bittersweet we are trying hard to eliminate.

Gretta's CSA farm:
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Gretta still has crops in her fields. Rows of curly blue-green and purple kales, big leaved collards and rows of leeks. Her cabbages still look fine to me. But then Gretta farms for whole sale and has much higher standards than me. She says these are frost burned. She has nice cover crop rows of green rye sprouts and golden spring oats. I love the golds, blues and browns of her fields.

As always, she gives me ideas for my garden. Challenges. I tasted collards for the first time from her winter distribution and will definitely add this tender and hardy green to my crop list for next year. I'm not so big on eating cabbages, but the big round heads sure look beautiful.

CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)

4 Comments:

Blogger Tyra in Vaxholm said...

Hello Kathy, yes there sure is dark and dull times but soon it will turn and get brighter. Lucky Gretta that still can harvest her field, it's amazing, I'm so impressed. Say hello to her from me and tell her I'm too a great fan of hers./ Tyra

Blooming Friday – blomming fredag i Tyras Trädgård

December 13, 2008 12:12 AM

 
Blogger kathy said...

Tyra, I think you have much less sun than us. And better outlook it seems.

I will relay you comment to Gretta.

December 13, 2008 12:40 AM

 
Blogger lkw said...

Kathy,
Having it get dark at 4:15 seems SO early, but you have a lot of time to read a few extra gardening books, perhaps? I have a tall stack that I seem to be taking forever to read.

I'm excessively gloomy when it's dark at ~5 pm and light at 7:30 am, about as bad as it gets in SC, so I'm impressed with those of you that have so much more severe weather than we do.

Collards are excellent! I never had any before I moved to the South, and they're wonderfully hardy.

Cheers,
Lisa

December 14, 2008 11:02 AM

 
Blogger pjkobulnicky said...

One of the differences I noted when we moved back to Ohio/PA from CT was the sunrise, sunset times. Winter evenings are not as bad in the Midwest as up in New England. But, and this should make you feel good, the Midwest is usually gray from Nov. to March. Sunny winter days are the rare exception. But New England often has bright blue winter skies. Or ... you could be in the Pacific NW where, despite the moderate temps and great gardening, it gets dark really early at night in the Winter and it precipitates from October to April ... non-stop it seems.

As for not liking cabbage ... plant some Savoy. It tastes like the best Kale when grown fresh. I like "Tundra" from Territorial. Great in the winter garden; as hardy as Kale.

Paul

December 15, 2008 4:06 PM

 

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