Keep it up!
Have you noticed your neighbors looking at your containers and garden beds with tinges of envy? You should be really proud of all the hard work and time you've put into growing a successful vegetable or herb garden this season!
While you may have gone into gardening this season for a specific reason (to get outdoors, to explore more flavors, to know just where your food comes from) we hope the last few months in your garden have shown you that gardening has a multitude of benefits and has turned you into a true "green thumber".
Feeling like a pro yet? Here’s a few more tips to keep you pushing through the growing season and on to harvest:
Got beans? The trick to a successful bean harvest is frequent picking. Once your plants begin to produce, harvest daily to encourage more production, and maintain tenderness and flavor.
Rainy days. Avoid working in your established garden after a rain because disease can spread rapidly.
Keep an eye on your containers. The soil in your planters dries out faster than a garden bed, so be sure to check containers more often, especially on warmer days. Water well in the morning hours to help them get through the afternoon heat.
Lend 'em some support. To support your growing peppers, tomatoes and other tall or vining plants, loosely tie the plant to stakes using raffia, rubber bands or even pieces of old pantyhose to allow for expansion as the plants continue to grow. Don't use wire twist ties or twine, which can gradually choke or even snap the stems.
Pick ripe and nearly ripe cherry tomatoes before a storm. Ripe cherry tomatoes may split open after a good rain due to the excess water pressure inside these thin-skinned fruits.
Make clean-up easy. Here's a great tip my grandma taught me: Before I go out into the garden, I scrape my fingernails across a bar of soap so the soap lodges underneath my nails. When I come inside, I wash up with a nail brush and there's no trace of dirt and grime!
So before I leave you and head outdoors to my own garden, I'd like to share a favorite quote from Sir Francis Bacon: "Gardening is the purest of human pleasures." Here's to many more days in the garden! Keep it up, you’re doing great.