October 19th…

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Happy “weekend after” Thanksgiving!!
As Canadians, I think it is great that our Thanksgiving falls in October – it gives us lots of time to savour the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. If you’re like me, getting ready for Christmas is a big deal and I need all the time I can get!

It’s also great that the weather this year has cooperated with us and has slowly cooled off (unlike some years where we go straight from hot summer nights to “where is my parka” evenings!).

If you can get past the fact that slowly, all of us with home gardens, are closing off parts of our beds and pulling the last of our bounty, then it is quite a glorious time!

These are the last of my carrots (above)…and as I pulled them, the “garden gods” released the most magnificent carrot perfume!  It’s actually incredible what these smells do to our senses…I would love to know, scientifically, what parts of my brain light up when this happens!

This one was a funny one!
I picked most of my beans to dry (harvest wasn’t as good as last year) and another handful of baby eggplants).
Another bag of “fallen” apples…still lots to pick from the trees.  Look here for a great apple cake recipe that I learned from a woman who owned an Inn in Tuscany!
Swiss chard, which wasn’t very productive during the heat of the summer (might have been all the rain we had), is now producing some nice stalks.
And a bean stalk (from some of the beans that I must have dug under when I pulled all of my bean stalks)…I think it wants to believe summer’s not over either!
I kept some tomatoes on the vines thinking they might get red (okay, the truth is I kinda forgot about them!).  This brown part is a sort of “tomato frost bite” from the cool nights – better to pick them green and ripen them on your window sill.  At least I’m feeding the lady bugs…
It happens to the cherry tomatoes too!
Still picking raspberries!  If you decide to plant some raspberry bushes somewhere in your yard, I would recommend buying a few different varieties that are everbearing…check when they harvest and plant them so you have raspberries all summer long (I pick mine from the beginning of July to the beginning of November!)
Soaking to get rid of all the sand and dirt (really important for the greens because just rinsing won’t get all the particles out…and you don’t want to cook a whole dish just to find out it is gritty because you didn’t clean it properly)
Setting a plate in from of your window to finish the ripening is a daily reminder of how awesome you are as a gardener….the “I grew that” feeling is a kind of pat on the back we all need every day!!