Gardening transitions

In recent years, I’ve focused my classes and presentations in the spring and fall, times that I knew we’d be in the mountains of Western North Carolina between traveling.

In the same fashion, I’ve rearranged my habitual gardening patterns, too, with previous timings for vegetables unsuitable for an absent harvester.

It was a bit unsettling;  I was mopey last year thinking about not being able to plant cool-season greens in late winter, but that all worked out.  A few transplants gave me harvests before we left for Quebec at the end of May. My quick garden up there was fun,  and the collards and kale planted last fall here in Asheville — they carried through winter this year, as they normally do, so we just enjoyed some for dinner yesterday.  (The previous two winters had had extreme dips, which took out everything.)

So, I’ve already planned for some of the veggies I’ll sow in late May this comimg summer in Quebec, with the seductive call of being there longer this year, along with the encouragement of hearing Brie Arthur talk about Foodscaping on Tuesday at Davidson. 

There are LONG growing days in Le Bic, even if it’s a bit cool for what we’d call warm-season vegetables in NC.  Our mailbox unit there was right in front of a couple’s vegetable garden that seemed to grow perceptibly daily.  By the time we left in early August last year, her squash plants were in flower and huge. Of course the first frost comes in early September, but they may have had more than enough squash by then (I’m guessing they don’t have squash vine borers there, given the extreme winter temperatures.)  But I’ll have to check. 

the vegetable garden near our mailbox pickup spot in late July

I’m planning to grow vining baby butternuts on one of our fences – excellent eaten green as well as cured.  Maybe I’ll try some zucchini, too!  In any case, my seeds are all largely gathered up and I’m ready for a summer vegetable garden in Quebec, not to mention the native perennials to add and the fruits to collect….we’ll see what survived from last year’s plantings (perennial-wise) in a few months. 
It was hard to imagine them under the winter snow in our recent visit.

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