It's been a fantastic year in the potager. I planted a little late this year because the potager was being built, and most of my seedlings dampened off, but it turned out to be a success anyway. Or at least a learning year! Here's what I grew, and what I learned.
1. Zucchini. I learned the average family does not need eight plants. Yes, I had eight. Four traditional, and four of the Eight-Ball variety. I donated a lot of these to my local food pantry, ate a bunch, froze a lot, and passed them off to anyone who would take them. Zucchini overload!
2. Sweet peppers. I grew six plants which resulted in a total of about 15 peppers. Next year I will reduce the quantity to make room for other vegetables. Or I may try an organic fertilizer on them (now I only use compost).
3. Hot peppers. I grew eight plants, and got lots of Thai Dragon and other little red hot babies. Only a few yellow cayenne, and about 10 jalapenos.
4. Cucumbers. Three plants yeilded...well...too many for my family to eat. And since you can't do anything to preserve them but pickling, I donated lots of these too. Will reduce to just one plant.
6. Blueberries. I lost two of my three plants, not sure why. I'd amended the soil with sulfer, peat moss, and pine needles to lower the pH like they require, but alas, they still died. The one bush that remains is growing well. I know they won't be mature and offer much for about four years or so, so I am being patient.
7. Strawberries. These did well, and we actually did eat some before the birds did!
8. Herbs. I made lots of pesto this year and threw chives in just about everything. I'm currently drying rosemary and sage for the cold months. I loved growing fresh herbs this year, something that I wasn't able to do in the past due to lack of garden space.
9. Leeks. These are still in the ground, waiting for me to cook them up in a potato leek soup!
10. Green beans. Two large harvests - one from my front yard trellis, and one in the potager. Delish!
11. Greens. LOVE growing Swiss chard. It just keeps coming back! I wonder how long into fall and winter I can keep them going. I've already frozen a bunch and try to work it into meals every week. We're having Salmon and Swiss Chard Quiche again this week! I've got kale, pak choi, and spinach seedlings in the garden right now, and with the help of cold frames (that my hubby has yet to build, hint, hint!) I hope to keep growing through the fall and harvesting through the winter.
So, with the reduction of zucchini next year, I plan to add more heirloom tomatoes, a rhubarb plant, and asparagus. I'll also include more annuals. While nasturtium is touted as a "must-have" for the potager, I found it to be lackluster. I want to include some annuals that burst with color and attract lots of pollinators.
Post Produce Day is hosted by Daniel Gasteiger at Your Small Kitchen Garden. Check out his blog to see what other veggie gardeners grew this year!
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The Making of a Potager - Part 1
The Making of a Potager - Part 2
The Making of a Potager - Part 3