December and Still No Frost

So here we are at December with no significant frost yet. I still have a pepper plant growing in the garden. The corn stalks are getting moldy and the tomato leaves are turning pale green but nothing has died yet. In January we get to start indoors all of the cole crops, and lettuce, Swiss chard and spinach so this year us gardeners have only one month of down time.

Lettuce, spinach and peas can be started in the greenhouse in January also, or in cold frames, which extend your growing season by two months. One in the spring and one in the fall.

I had to pull out about a bushel full of oregano today because it was growing along a pathway and crowding me over to a planting area. It gets major trimming every year and it’s still heading in all directions. It’s a great foundation plant because it stays low, never looses its leaves and takes total neglect.

The rosemary is also a good perennial but it gets four feet tall so isn’t suited for all areas. Lavender bushes stay low and smell sweet whenever you brush by them. A planting of sage will go on for years but basil has to be planted every year. Herbs are generally very easy to grow and can be incorporated into meals to add variety to our culinary creations.

My main garden pathway has already worn thin of the leaf mulch. I’m going to have to consider using tougher material like bark, shavings or pine needles. I’m making rich black soil in the path that should be in the planting beds, and the leaves last much longer under the artichokes. Time release nutrients instead of black sticky mud.

Using straw is probably not the best idea either because it breaks down so fast and encourages earthworms to come up. I should start putting it where veggies will grow. When I get it for Christmas it feels like it’s free so l can put it wherever I want it, but until then I’ll try to take alternate routes to the greenhouse. Scenic routes, if you will, and I’ll stop being in such a hurry.

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