Cars 108 Garden Harvest Time
It's been a good year for the Cars 108 garden. Almost everything we planted produced prolifically. Between my garden at home and the one at the radio station, I had enough tomoatoes to can for soups and chili and plenty to give to friends and co-workers. The potatoes did very well, as I dug up a 5-gallon bucketful of spuds. The sweet potatoes were the only disappointment as they didn't get very large. I still plan to throw a couple of them on the grill and see how they taste before calling them a failure.
The two sunflowers we planted as an afterthought grew to be over 8 feet tall with heads that had to weigh close to 10 pounds. Enough seeds to save and plant next year with plenty left over for the birdfeeder. After the deer mowed down most of the cayenne peppers in August, they have rebounded and produced more peppers. Enough to make my eyes water when I put them in a pot of chili or two this winter!
At home we grew a couple of different varieties of squash. I was really pleased with some heirloom varieties we got from the Flint Farmer's Market. I'm saving some seeds from those, and looking forward to trying some new varieties next season. We also had a very good year with grapes. Most of our vines are 3-5 years old and produced a bumper crop this year. We put away some juice for later and have been munching Concord grapes as a snack for weeks now. Might have to try my hand at making grape jelly. Anybody got a can't-miss recipe?
As someone who IS NOT an expert, it's pretty easy to grow and enjoy a garden, not to mention the fresh produce. Most of the things we grew, we started from seeds so our investment was small. Our patch at the station is only 15 x 8 and our garden at home (we live on a half-acre city lot) is also small. We utilize as much space as possible, planting grapes along our fenceline. Cucumbers and peas also do well climbing a fence and don't take up much space. Carrots and onions can go in small spaces in between. Planting a garden is something anyone can do. If I can pull it off, you've gotta like your chances. If you have questions that require expertise, the MSU Extension can be found at the Flint Farmer's Market. Garden centers and greenhouses like Wojo's and Piechniks are also very helpful. It's not too early to start thinking ahead to next year!