Let's Grow Together: A Beet-Down!

Go babies, grow!

One of the many mistakes I made last season was failing to continually seed throughout the season.  It's so easy to be gung-ho in the spring, but it's also easy to forget to keep things rolling throughout the summer by simply plunking more seeds into the empty spaces left by early producers.  Thankfully, it's a lesson I learned, and this year I'm determined to keep my garden producing all season long... and I'm not the only one.

Linda Crago of Tree & Twig has laid down a challenge to gardeners... a 'beet-down', if you will.  The Late Beet Planting Challenge extends from coast to coast, with participants agreeing to plant and harvest a crops of Detroit Dark Red beets at (approximately) the same time.  It was a challenge that I couldn't resist, and though I was late to the game (I sowed my seeds about 48 hours AFTER everyone else because I'm a terrible procrastinator) I'm pleased to see my new beet crop poking up through the soil.  Will my beets outshine their competition? Will they get munched by mystery pests like my spring drop of Golden Detroits? Only time will tell!

It's too late to join this particular challenge, but it certainly serves as a reminder to keep on sowin'! Right now is the perfect time in Southern Ontario to think about planting fall crops like beets, carrots, parsnips, cabbage and kale, and as long as the sun keeps shining, there is always room for a little more lettuce!  Need some beet seeds? Linda was very gracious in sharing hers, I can certainly pass along the favour! If you'd like some FREE BEET SEEDS in the mail, just drop me an e-mail with your address and I'll send them your way... just promise to tell me how you made out with your late planting challenge!

The HEAT Goes On...

Thankfully, not all of my garden plants seem to mind.

The wave of heat and drought continues in Southern Ontario. I did a rain dance before bed last night, but to no avail...

In Case You've Been Under A Rock...

I feel I would be remiss if I didn't give a big ol' shout out to Julie Bass, the suburban resident of Oak Park, MI who is being charged by her city for the unspeakable crime of growing vegetables in raised garden beds (GASP!) in FRONT of her house. Imagine the horror!

Click on the video for the story, if perchance you've not yet heard it.  I don't think I need to tell you where I stand on the issue... frankly, I'm surprised that the city is maintaining such a strong stance in the face of the outrage they're receiving from people all over North America and as far as Australia. 

Truly noteworthy, however, is Julie herself.  I just spent the morning reading her entire blog, and I have to tell you that I'm utterly charmed.  Julie writes from a real and personal perspective, she answers comments (which at this point, I'm sure is close to impossible) and she conducts herself with incredible poise and dignity.  When crap like this goes viral, which it now has, the central figure suddenly becomes a public personality and is subjected to the opinions and comments of every jackass with an internet connection... it's a scary thing! Julie always takes the high road, and for that as much as her veggie-rights cause, she should be commended.

So, want to help her out?
Write to the city of Oak Park, MI 
Sign the petition 

Cheers to Julie Bass and her front-yard veggies!  

A Summer Pause

How has it happened?  Frankly, I've been a miserable blogger this season... but perhaps that's been to the benefit of my garden.  It's been easy to get frustrated this season, inheriting a giant space with a wonderful bounty to keep over, ambitiously expanding and experimenting, wanting everything to work out right here and now.  But, as usual, the garden teaches me patience. It slows and humbles me. It reminds me that sometimes, despite doing the right thing and planning carefully, harvests will fail. Trees will drop fruit. Flowers will wilt, and aphids will suck, and grass will brown and go dormant.  The high season of summer takes hold, and we give pause to bow to the heat and admit that at times, it's best to put down your arms and retreat, relenting in the shade and the cool respite of a hard-won mint tea on ice.

MO FARM in images as of the end of June follows. I truly can't wait to see what July will hold.

I promise to be better with sharing my fun.