We were quite a bit more successful this year than last, but it's still been a learning experience. I do think it's still kind of remarkable considering where the veggie garden started.
This year we learned...
Morning glories would stage a coup of the whole yard if we let them.
I can't take credit for these, the previous owners had them and they keep coming back with vengeance. I seriously have to go out and trim it down every other day to keep it from going too far into the path. But I've figured out how to control them! In addition to trimming them frequently, mulching on our side of the fence made a huge difference. I still have to weed the little stragglers that keep trying to pop up, but it's finally manageable. In the summer, they're 100% more attractive than the naked chain link fence. No chain link fence is sexy. Not even naked ones.
If you leave green peppers on the plant long enough, they'll turn into red peppers or even yellow peppers. Who knew?? Ok, I know this isn't revolutionary, but I didn't know!
Our strawberries have been producing fruit ALL summer! We didn't get to eat any until a month ago though. Why? Chipmunks decided they looked tasty too and kept beating us to them. Thankfully, a neighbor recommended the perfect remedy. Boil hot pepper seeds in water and then spritz the plants with the pepper water. Works like a charm, and since we're also growing jalapenos in the garden, it was a free fix! No, the strawberries don't end up tasting like peppers.
Tomatoes get diseased, but generally still produce tons of fruit. Cucumber plans catch tomato's sickness and most of the plants wither away. We've gotten several cucumbers, but we would have had dozens if the plants stayed health. This obviously needs to change next year. Since we don't have enough room to rotate our crops as recommended, I'm going to hunt for an organic treatment for the soil that will protect the plants next year.
Good thing eggplants don't catch the same sickness- I can't wait to try these! Only thing I'd change about these next year is the location we planted them. They get huge and are encroaching on my carefully planned path. I'll forgive them though, since they're going to end up giving us several awesome looking eggplants.
One thing's for certain though- we certainly can grow tomatoes. More than we can ever eat.
Time to make some pasta sauce!