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.
My tomato dreams for the season are over -- wiped out by last week's hail storm.
At least a dozen tomatoes, in varying stages of ripening, were sheared off my plants and dumped rudely on my deck. I was hoping to salvage the tomatoes that managed to stay on the vine, but after inspecting them over the weekend, it was clear they were a lost cause. Every single one was damaged, the skin pierced in multiple spots by hailstones.
Since that's a recipe for disease, I reluctantly plucked them and threw them away.
So with six tomato plants, I harvested exactly one -- ONE -- tomato before the destruction. There's still hope for my beets, and I've been enjoying my basil, three kinds, all summer long, as well as mint and salad greens. But all in all, that's a pretty pathetic yield.
It's way too late to plant new tomatoes, obviously, but I'm thinking about late-season veggies I might try, so this year's growing season isn't such a bust.
The U of M extension service has some guidelines and suggestions for mid-to-late-summer planting on its website (http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/horticulture/M1227.html).
So tell me, fellow gardeners. What late-season veggies have you tried? What's worked for you? Or should I just resign myself to the farmer's market?
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