It’s hard to believe summer is almost gone. The last two months were very dry here, so I was pleasantly surprised to return from our vacation yesterday to witness a nice soaking rain. All told we got a little over 1.5 inches of rain in the last 7 days. I could almost hear everything outdoors going ‘ahhhhh’.
The garden seemed to do well in our absence, thanks to mulching and a thorough soaking with soaker hoses before we left. The fall gardens are always tricky around here, trying to get cool loving plants established while it is still hot and (usually) dry. Ours seems to be coming along nicely. We have Lacinato and Portuguese kale big enough to eat already. They will be tastier though when the weather cools a bit.
The broccoli plants are doing great too. The birds and rabbits managed to get a few plants, but enough escaped to give us a potentially good harvest. You may notice I am hesitant to claim any victory until the plants are a bit further along!
Since we were gone for more than a week, I knew the okra plants would have some giant pods. And they did! The oversized ones wound up on the compost pile, but there were still enough small, tender ones for eating.
The yardlong beans held up better. I got a nice haul of them today, almost a pound. I am thinking a stir fry is in order.
We have plenty of eggplant and peppers to go in a stir fry too.
Most of our ornamental plants have survived the hot and dry summer. This Red October hosta has pretty purple blooms, even though the leaves are a bit dried around the edges.
Most of the hostas have been eaten by deer though, and look like the one in the photo below.
The sedums are putting on a good show just in time for autumn. Bees and butterflies love the blossoms. So far the deer have left them alone, at least this year. They are an easy plant to grow, and to propagate by division and cuttings. We have quite a few planted.
And last but not least we are waiting for the luffas to be ready to harvest. The biggest ones are almost as big around as a baseball bat! It’s been awhile since I’ve grown them, but I do remember they take a long time to dry out. It will probably be winter before they can be used for soap and craft projects.
That’s a quick look at our late summer gardens. If I can get my vacation photos sorted out I will do some posts later on about our trip. It may take me a while because I have almost 900 digital photos to wade through! While it was nice to get away, it’s also always great to be back home.