November 2, 2013

Beans Beans and more Beans

Fall has officially arrived in Florida so I thought I'd share how things fared in our mini urban farm.

      This year I found many of my garden ideas on Pinterest.  One of the most successful without a doubt was the Cattle Fence Arch.
 The pole beans absolutely loved growing over this.  We have harvested at least 30 pounds of beans and we're not done yet.  For some reason this wasn't a good year for cucumbers, many others around me had issues as well.  I also think I got them in a little too late.  The arch is still producing beans and a second season of squash.  I am hoping to train the sweet potato vines to climb over it so I won't look barren over winter.
     Another garden idea from pinterest was using hay bales as a growing medium.  I will never battle square foot gardening again.  This was so easy!! The tomatoes absolutely loved growing in them and despite periods of no rain watering wasn't an issue as the bales kept everything nice and moist.  My plan for next year is to "enclose" the hay bales with a picket fence, mostly so the chickens don't scratch them apart as the did this year.  I just love how my garden looks with hay foot paths.  The herbs also did very well.  The corn however didn't fare very well, not sure if it was the bales or just a bad summer for corn but they did seem a bit too tall.  I was disappointed to discover that I never took pictures of the garden in full bloom but here's one from the first few days of set-up
    The Peeps have been producing with on a nice regular basis.  With 6 hens I get 5 or 6 eggs a day.  That is as long as we get to the eggs before the dogs. I really shouldn't be surprised that they'd go into the coop for the eggs but DANG. Only upside of that is their coats are looking wonderful.  I'll have more on the Peeps later this week.
     I've started my Fall plantings. I just planted 3 containers of mixed onion sets.  I've got lettuce and spinach breaking through.  I am looking forward to planting potatoes again as that was so successful.  Broccoli and Cauliflower are in the seedling stage and I am ready for the squirrels this year I dare them to come back.  The only summer crop left to harvest are the peanuts and we're just waiting for their leaves to turn yellow.
      Our next plan is to build a strawberry tower so we can get them out of their pots.  They really did so much better in pots than in the upside down planter thing, which is why so many real gardening sites said that was the worst way to grown them.  We did get a nice harvest from the planter but the plants themselves weren't very happy as they like to create runners which had no where to go.
So that's the latest on our mini-urban-farm. What are your Fall/Winter Garden plans?
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