Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Oh, How I Love To Clean

Yeah, not really. Not at all. Not anything, actually. Although, cleaning up the garden, which is what I did yesterday, is much less painful than cleaning something like, say, a toilet that will just have to be cleaned again in a week. If you're diligent. Or longer, if you're not (hi!).


Yes. Fall garden cleanup. I have been avoiding it, because honestly? The garden is kind of a mess. The weeds, people. They will destroy us all. I was so good about weeding in the early part of the summer, and then . . . I don't know. It rained a lot? I was really tired? I was really lazy? Whatever the reason, the weeds have had their way with the garden, and it is ugly out there. It's kind of embarrassing, actually. That's why there are no photos.

So, you'll just have to trust me when I tell you that I did actually clean up out there. Even if it doesn't look much like it. I pulled out all the half-frozen green bean plants; the bell peppers; the jalapeƱos*; the blackened and sad-looking basil bushes; the dead and dried corn plants; the withered zucchini vines . . . so much pulling and flinging into the gully. I even yanked all the pumpkin vines out of the blackberry patch and cut down the old blackberry canes**. And believe me, blackberry canes and pumpkin vines are an unholy and evil combination. There was much swearing at thorns and cursing of twining vines.

I also pulled out the kick-ass bamboo tomato supports that really did not get to support much except for blighted tomatoes this year. Sad. However! I am pleased to tell you that the supports came out mostly intact and I just leaned them up against the garden fence all ready for next year. This should save me hours and hours of cutting and trimming of bamboo stakes, and then the tying of said stakes. Assuming they don't all rot over the winter, or get smashed to pieces by wind or something. I remain optimistic.

Lastly, I spread some of the big tarps in the weediest areas in an attempt to smother as many weeds as possible before the spring. I suspect this may be a futile effort, but it's all I got.

There are still things out there--leeks, beets, collards, chard, radishes, parsnips--but this is pretty much the end of another gardening season. And I think this one is ending with a whimper instead of a bang. Oh well, better luck next year.

* Lookit! I learned how to do it! Thanks, Lennie. I used the "alt 0241" method you recommended. And now Blogger is marking it as a misspelled word. Stupid, monolinguistic Blogger.

** Blackberry canes bear every other year, so the canes that bore this year are cut to the ground and the new canes that started growing this summer are left over the winter to flower in the spring. Assuming those irritating rabbits don't strip all the bark off the canes over the winter and kill them.


sweetbird said...

I'd be a little worried over reusing the bamboo stakes for the tomatoes. Blight is a tricky, sneaky fungus that can hitch a ride on most anything.

Kristin @ Going Country said...

Yeah. Except cold temperatures kill it. And those stakes are just out in the garden. They will most definitely be subjected to well below freezing temperatures.

Anonymous said...

I was thinking...you could use the tarp and pull all the weeds , put them on the tarp to drag over to ditch to throw them in. Hence, getting rid of the seeds of the weeds and the eyesore of the weeds as the same time. Me, no , I am too lazy....just sayin'. You could have a garden party to help you get the weeds out of the garden. Wouldn't that be fun, doing it w/ a bunch of folks. Make a big pot of end of garden soup for afterwards. Maybe even cook it outside. We could all come? It would be way more fun w/ people to share the work with.

me again said...

It worked! And you learned a new thing this week! :-) HAPPY to help!!

FinnyKnits said...

I'm procrastinating on the destruction of the remaining veg beds until a frost comes to kill my tomatoes. Or, I may *may* get inspired and do it next weekend so I can pick all the green tomatoes and make salsa.

We'll see.

Meanwhile, I didn't realize that blackberry canes only produced every other year. Given we prune my parents' blackberry bushes with a tractor and have never seen a cane that didn't spring back twice the size next year and produce for us, this comes as something of a shock.

Also- go easy, pregnant lady.

Daisy said...

I wonder if the rogue koalas will sneak into your yard and eat the bamboo? Wait, that's pandas. Koalas eat eucalyptus. maybe? Never mind.