November 1, 2011

Fall Gardening Continued

How is your fall garden going? Mine is slow. I have lettuce, arugula, beets, and surprisingly, some peas.

Peas aside, the three vegetables I am growing should be able to do well down to 20 degrees F. Not the case.

It's interesting how different the maintenance and worrying is in the fall, compared to the summer. Here are the questions I ask myself in the summer:

1. Are my plants too hot?
2. Are they getting enough water?
3. Do I need to weed?
4. What bugs might be attacking my plants?
5. Are there enough nutrients in my soil?

In the fall, it's completely different:

1. Are my plants too cold?
2. Are they getting too much water?
3. Is the wind affecting my plants?

My problem is too much water. Here are signs that your fall garden is getting too much water:

1. Pale colored leaves
2. Stunted growth
3. Wilting leaves
4. Dying plants. (check for root rot, it looks like it sounds)

notice the pale leaves

Consistent rain not only can cause root rot, but it will also wash the nitrogen out of your soil.

Here is what you can do today:
1. Mulching with straw. Wait until your soil has dried out a bit before you apply. Mulch can hold moisture in just as much as it can keep it out.

2. Get rid of any rotting plants immediately.

3. Raised beds are ideal, but sometimes it's not enough. Create mounds of dirt within your raised beds to grow your vegetables in. This will increase the airflow around your plants roots. See image below

4. Build a hoop house or cloche to not only warm up your soil temperatures but to also limit the water that is absorbed into your soil.

5. Be sure to add fertilizer that is rich in nitrogen. See this post for tips.

Not sure if your soil is retaining too much water? Pick up a handful of dirt from your garden and squeeze. If water drips out, it's too wet! Pin It

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...