It’s Nine in the evening ~ 28 Celsius

August 15th 8-52 pm - 002

But, oh what a beautiful evening it is just before the sun rests on this day…

Gardening for Fall in Northern Ontario

Fall is the time to plant garlic. Around August 17, take your cloves apart and plant the toes about 3 to 4 inches deep. This may not be accurate! Garlic dates vary wildly around the country. The way to be sure is to use a soil thermometer. When the soil temperature is 60° at a depth of 4 inches, then plant your garlic.

GarlicBasket

It’s also time to begin thinking about what types of Tulips you want to plant. We experience such long winter months. It  is so joyous to see the snow melting in the spring and the arrival of those first tulips peeking out from the ground…

Tulips

I’ve planted my Fall crop of Swiss chard and I am monitoring my potato plants. The first planter will be ready on August 20th and the leaves are beginning to turn yellow as they should. This is a signal that their growing time is almost complete. My second planter was planted two weeks after the first and they will be ready by August 30th. The third planter containing my sweet potatoes should be ready by September 10th.

This is truly an exciting time of year for a gardener who waits 80 – 100 days for the potatoes to grow. It can be such a treat to tip over the containers when it’s time and count just how many spuds you’re going to get each year. I did ponder over planting my potatoes in the soil this year, but decided to use containers instead. This is much easier on me to just tip over the container on a tarp and then add the soil back into the compost bin for the frozen winter to clean up any thing in the soil. One good thing about gardening in the frozen north I don’t have to worry too much about rotation. At least from what I’ve read here and there.

I’ve saved all of the peels and scraps from all vegetables, coffee grounds, egg shells, etc all summer long, adding these to the compost bins. Usually after it rains (which didn’t happen much this year) I lift a medium size rock in search of some nice fat worms to add to the compost bins as well. You can really never have too many of these nature workers as they aid in giving you the best ever black gold for the spring when everything is hungry.

Between recycling in our blue boxes, and composting what I can I usually only have around 1/4 bag of garbage each week. I tend to not buy products with a lot of packaging as I shop in the grocery store mainly around the outside of the store.. The middle is where all of the processed foods are and I stay away from those.. Too much salt anyway.. along the outside perimeter of the store is the vegetables, meats, milk and cheese. The frozen vegetables are also good as they last longer than the fresh and usually are more cost efficient for me to buy when outside of my local growing times.

My gardening regret this year was that I forgot to plant my zucchini. I ran out of large containers after using them for the potatoes. This would have been such a good year for growing this vegetable since it was so dry I could have planted them right in the ground .. With very little rain I didn’t have any snail or slug problems this year.

Last year lots of rain equaled the battle of the slugs… and don’t forget the wasp. This year I didn’t have any of the nests in my yard, but they were in the neighbors yards and make a daily visit to my garden cleaning up any bad bugs that might harm my plants.

Wasp

courtesy of : http://i4.mirror.co.uk/incoming/article6360545.ece/ALTERNATES/s615/Wasp.jpg

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Here are some interesting answers

http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2015/08/hornets_and_yellow_jackets_are_aggressive_in_summer_stinging_wasps_social.html

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I’m not sure if wasp are effected by long weeks of heat and humidity, but this year we had both all summer and the wasp are mean. They have been daily chasing me indoors if I’m out there after nine in the morning. Which is why I do most of my gardening at 6 in the morning and head indoors around 8, before they show up….I just read the above article and know a bit more why they are so mean at this time of year…

So, get that garlic ready to plant and choose which tulip you want to plant… I know I will be….

Frog sticking out tongue

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38368-Mountain-Bluebird

Until next time

~ Laura~