This Garden Life - Early August

Somehow it is August and I realize that I wrote ONCE in July. And I haven't written a garden update since June. We've been living in a sea of change the past few months and it takes all of my energy and then some just to keep my head on straight. I find myself retreating to the garden any chance I get, no matter how short, and it never fails to center me. I can walk out there pulling out my hair and when I walk back into the house I feel renewed, ready to tackle whatever is next. Even with rampant perfectionism gnawing at me gardening really is my sweet spot.

We continue to learn more each year and I love it. And hate it. But mostly love it. We've battled deer for the first time this year, but no Japanese beetles. Our tomato plants are growing so heavy with fruit (yay!) that they are falling over even with cages and breaking (boo!). Next year we're going to forgo cages and plant them along some fencing and tie them up there instead. We're planting a second crop of many things just to see what happens. I'm actually writing down the dates I planted things now so we have better reference points in the future. I've been meaning to all summer, but those good intentions were buried somewhere in my sleep deprived brain.

We've canned 7 pints of cucumbers using a new dill pickle recipe this year. I've made carrot zucchini muffins and zucchini bread. I'm so glad we have a deep freeze we can utilize this season so we have more space for everything. We haven't been composting all summer and it's breaking my heart a bit. We didn't have a sustainable set up so I've got my eye on a few compost barrels that may become ours before too long here. [If you don't have a Fleet Farm or similar outfit near you you are missing out. Seriously.]

So there you have it. The garden is growing. We have a potato/tomato patch that is growing like mad. The jury is out on the onions, but I learned I planted them poorly. Oops. I will be planting garlic this fall for next year. We have no basil yet, so our pesto may be farmer's market supplemented. The sugar snap peas are the best I've ever had. The crabgrass is still a pain in the ass, but the newspaper/hay combo has been a huge help. I'm loving the whole mess of this thing called gardening. 
These ladies benefited from our mistake in planting WAY too many greens all at once.

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