Greengirls Helen Yarmoska, Nicole Hvidsten, Martha Buns, Connie Nelson, Kim Palmer and Mary Jane Smetanka are dishin' the dirt from the back-yard garden and beyond. Whether you're a greenthumb or greenhorn, they're eager to learn from your mishaps, mistakes - and most importantly, your sweet successes - all growing season long.
Is it just me, or did fall come out of nowhere this year? I mean, we had such a cool summer that it didn't feel like July until September. Then, the next thing I know there are freeze warnings --- even here in the metro --- and a chance of snow!
Now I'm in a panic beause I've got bushels of green tomatoes on the vines. And they may just stay there.
I've already cooked up two batches of tomato jam (great recipe from the New York Times) and dried my weight in sun-dried tomatoes. (That's a lot of tomatoes!) But I'm not sure if I'm up for making green tomato chutney. (A little bit goes a long way.) And while I was smart enough to harvest all the basil and make a couple of gallons of pesto last week, I've got pots of parsley, tarragon, oregano, thyme and sage and who knows what else I haven't touched.
And it's already fight or flight.
Should I harvest the rest of the tomatoes or just let them go? Should I bring in the pots of herbs (Ack! Where would I put them all?) or let them take their chances? Should I get out the blankets to cover the impatiens (Bless their tough little hearts. They've looked incredible all summer) just so they can bloom for another week or two?
I know this isn't the bitter end. Plenty more work awaits me in the garden. But I feel like I'm losing my mojo just when I need it. Shouldn't I make use of all that produce, down to the last kelly green cherry tomato?
What say you, northern gardeners? Are you going to power through or throw in the trowel? Are you going to race against the forecast or call it a season?
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