Common Ground – September 2023

“…spring is gone, and summer cannot last.”

May Riley

At the risk of sounding like something that should be embroidered on a pillow, it seems to me that all time spent in the late summer garden is a gift.

I have been able to pick tomatoes every day and the heavy rains have given me the most productive cucumber vines I have ever had. The surviving zucchini seedling (from a Vesey’s mixture) turned out to be a very attractive vining type with small round zucchinis. These did not grow into zucchini baseball bats when I forgot them for a few days. How amazing is that?

I have stopped picking the pole beans at this point in the season. They have been very productive and I really can’t face another fresh bean. I’ll leave the remaining beans to mature and dry on the vines to use for seed next year.

The morning glories planted with the pole beans came into their own in August. Most are a beautiful single dark blue. I’m lucky to have a few self-seeded double pinks. I thought I had seen the last of the pink ones since I couldn’t find the seeds for that particular variety this spring. But in true cottage garden fashion, they decided to come back on their own with no help from me.

I know that I said earlier in the season that peonies are the ultimate cut flower. But I might change my mind about that. The glads have been great this year with all the rain. The frilly, large and definitely over the top parrot glads didn’t disappoint. I love these although I think that the taste police would prefer the peonies.

I plant glads in oval shaped groupings. I prefer this to straight rows. The straight row for both flowers and vegetables we owe to the invention of the seed drill. Straight rows take up more room than rectangular blocks or intensively planted groups. But that is another discussion for another day.

I was surprised to find myself cleaning up a weedy strawberry patch. I had let it go since it hasn’t done much since I planted it a few years ago. In spite of much fussing and watering there weren’t very many berries. But this year with the heavy rains, I was surprised to find lots of berries amongst the weeds. So it got a good clean up and a bit more respect. We will see what it does next year.

Finally, it would appear that the beaver kingdom has been somewhat restored. I say somewhat since there have been some repairs to the big dam and a higher water level. I have a pond once again but fortunately no flooding near my cabin. I can hear the odd splash and thunking sound from the pond. I’m guessing that they’re collecting their winter food supply and getting ready for the change of season.

As am I. The swallows are lined up on the wires and our short northern summer will soon come to an end.

Days are getting shorter and the best time of the year will soon be here. I’m looking forward to fall which is, of course, the real new year.

By Jill Williams

Tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.