Grit Blogs > The Theoretical Farmers Almanack

Fall in the Valley

Fall has come to the Shenandoah Valley in full force. We seem to have bypassed any type of Indian Summer and temperatures have settled in at around 45 degrees by day and down to 30 at night. Delicate plants such as basil and green peppers have turned black and limp from frost while the more hearty herbs like rosemary and thyme are still thriving. I think the Last Rose of Summer fell apart into brown-edged petals yesterday. It was still clinging bravely to the vine when I left to go grocery shopping. By the time I returned home, the wind had dislodged it and all that was left on the vine was the center of the flower, looking frail and rather pathetic in the watery su

I love the change of seasons, and it suits me just fine that summer chose to exit without lingering goodbyes. Still, I still feel the need to play in the dirt a bit. I’m not quite ready to give up gardening yet. I talked to a seasoned farmer at church this morning and asked him if I could grow anything now. He was rather cryptic in his answer. “Yeah, there are lots of things you can grow now.” I waited for him to continue but he had stopped talking and was obviously not going to enlighten me on the bounty of late fall growing. I prodded a bit further and asked if I could plant onions. “No,” he said, shaking his head solemnly, “you don’t want to plant onions now. They will freeze in the ground.” What about carrots, I continued. “Not so sure. Maybe.” Such was the extent of my interview. Perhaps I shall just resort to Google.

Or more likely I will create a lush winter garden inside my head. After all, I am a theoretical farmer still and there is no pressure to  have anything to show for my intensive labors of the mind!

nebraska dave
11/11/2012 2:01:39 AM

TRF, summer is over here in Nebraska as well. We are deep into fall weather. Chilly mornings with fog and drizzle at times. The several frosts have killed all but the heartiest of plants. The last thing that I finally had to pull out and toss with Chard. It survived the long hot dry summer and the frosty nights of fall and still looks as good as ever. What a plant. I didn't know that if you left it grow it would practically grow as tall as my shoulders. I looked green and lush and still could be used in the salads on the table. I'm definitely keeping that one in my list of plants to grow. The only thing that can be planted here that I know is garlic. It will mature next year. I did throw some over ripe tomatoes in next year's tomato patch in hopes that some volunteers will pop up like last year. I didn't even try last year. They just appeared. So now I'm trying to make it happen. Have a great fall garden day.


trf cullers
11/8/2012 11:15:37 PM

A woman after my own heart! :)


cindy murphy
11/5/2012 9:30:04 PM

That is exactly the type of winter garden I planted this year, TRF - a lush, bountiful one that never got any further than my imagination. Or maybe a little further; I actually bought the seeds....last spring, but forgot where I stashed them. Enjoy your day.