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N&C Midwest—October 2020

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/1/2020, 7:57 am

Hello, everyone!  Happy October! 

Feels like fall here today, down into the 40s last night, my furnace even kicked on!  We got a bit of rain, maybe that will make weeding the asparagus bed easier?  Also need to figure out what to do with the non-productive strawberry bed; will need to replace plants.  I am thinking after it frosts, will remove them, amend and mulch for winter—any input?
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/1/2020, 9:05 am

Can you believe it is October already?  Where did summer go?  We had a predicted heavy frost warning for Friday night/Saturday morning, but they has since cancelled that warning. I still have a lot of peppers and tomatoes to pick before frost gets them.  Yesterday I picked up some bales of straw so that I can heavily mulch the beds after I remove the last plants from the beds, then we'll be ready for the long winter months.

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/1/2020, 9:59 pm

I think we still have the frost warning, but we’ll see what evolves for the weekend.  I still have a lot of peppers and tomatoes out there too.  Need to pick up some straw too...still quite a lot to do!
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Post  sanderson on 10/1/2020, 10:52 pm

SR, amending and mulching is always good for the beds in northern latitudes. Very Happy

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/2/2020, 8:17 am

@sanderson wrote:SR,  amending and mulching is always good for the beds in northern latitudes. Very Happy
I’m on it.  

I had a strange year in my garden; I just wasn’t as enthused as usual.  I did love some of the new things I tried, but the old stand-by stuff was sort of disappointing.  

On a plus note; my garlic came!  Yay!  I love you
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/2/2020, 4:49 pm

Cleaned up the bed with the peppers, and one tomato plant, and readied it for winter. The pepper plants were so productive this year that we could not keep up with all of them. There were 6 each bell pepper, banana pepper, and Jalapeno pepper in the bed, and they were all over 3' tall. After cutting off all of the plants at the soil level, I applied rock phosphate, Azomite, coffee grounds, and compost to the bed. Then I mulched it with straw to bed it down for the winter. I soaked the straw with water so that it won't blow around before it gets packed down a little.


This is a "before" picture of the bed with peppers and a tomato. Picked all of the peppers and green tomatoes before removing the plants.
N&C Midwest—October 2020 Pepper32


This is an "after" picture of the bed after all of the plants were removed, the bed was topped off, and then it was heavily mulched.
N&C Midwest—October 2020 Straw_10

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/2/2020, 8:05 pm

Wow, OG!  You are on it! I’m not...had a long work day.  

Did you pick maters?  

Peppers are kinda tough.  I only have chard and celery out there otherwise, so really not concerned!  

I personally am gonna ride it out—they are predicting frost tonight.  We will see?
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/3/2020, 7:39 am

Yes, SR, I picked all of the green tomatoes and they are wrapped in newspaper so they can slowly ripen into the winter months.  In addition to the peppers and tomatoes, I picked all of the summer squash and cucumbers in case we did get frost. We didn't get any frost, though.  The only things we have left in the garden for harvest are the kale, swiss chard, and spinach. This week I hope to get the rest of the beds ready for winter. I currently have two beds planted in the winter cover crop of Daikon radish, and the one bed I did yesterday that is mulched with straw. Three more beds to finish....

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/3/2020, 7:06 pm

I hope I get a chance before the rain tomorrow to pull some spent stuff out there.  I did get a thing of compressed straw at TSC today.  I have never done that!  Lots of peppers, some maters.  Lots of green ones!
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Post  nrstooge on 10/8/2020, 6:52 am

October already.. whew.. our first frost is usually around the 11th.  I have the hoops on the tabletop .. ready for the plastic cover for the winter. 

Garlic is here.. first time trying in a container so wish me luck it survives the winter here. (no access to any hay to help against the winter)

Tomatoes are winding down but the fall greens are doing well. 

What is everyone else doing?
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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/8/2020, 7:55 am

I need to clean out the dead cucumber vines and trellises, and also get the cold frame weeded and stuff out of there.  Also need to weed the garlic bed (I got mine too!).  Planting German Extra Hardy and trying Music this year—I grew Georgian Fire last year and loved it, but the supplier had crop failure and Pinetree substituted Music for it.  

Good luck with the container garlic, nrstooge, I tried it once but honestly I think the squirrels found it while burying tidbits in my various containers for overwintering.  Not one came up!
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/9/2020, 5:46 pm

It was time to clean up the tomato plants and get the bed ready for winter. All of the green tomatoes were picked and stored for winter ripening, so there is no reason to leave the plants there. Took the plants out and chopped them up, and removed to the tomato cages and hung them back up in the garage. Then refreshed the bed with rock dust and rock phosphate, and then topped off with about 2" of compost before heavily mulching with straw. The one cage left on the end is for the cucumbers to finish maturing. After the cucumbers are either picked or frost killed, that cage will be removed and store, then straw will be applied to that corner of the bed.


The tomatoes and tomato cages are ready to be removed to clean up the bed.
N&C Midwest—October 2020 Beds_b10


The tomato plants and cages have been removed, the bed refreshed for winter, and is heavily mulched with straw.  I left the Sweet Alyssum on the bed until frost kills it, then I will remove them.
N&C Midwest—October 2020 Beds_a10

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/9/2020, 6:58 pm

Clean up and bed down time...with a few things ongoing!  

OG, didn’t you grow Music garlic?  How did you like it?  Or am I mistaken???
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/9/2020, 8:09 pm

Yes, SR, I have grown Music Garlic. It is one of my favorites, especially for cooking. Raw it is a little spicy hot, but for cooking it has great flavor. It only has about 4 to 6 cloves per bulb for most of them, although a few bulbs had as many as 8 cloves. The cloves are very large, and have a pinkish color to them.  The plants get very tall, and the scapes are very long as well - most of the plants were over 3' tall. After the bulbs are harvested and dried, they seem to store very well until the following spring, if we don't eat them all.  Smile

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Post  nrstooge on 10/9/2020, 8:55 pm

That is the garlic I got this year.. Music.. we will see how it does in a container
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/10/2020, 7:45 am

@nrstooge wrote:That is the garlic I got this year.. Music.. we will see how it does in a container

It will be interesting to see how they do in a container. I've never grown in containers, so don't have any experience with that.  The only concern I've ever had with growing garlic in the raised beds is that it ties up that bed until July when I can harvest the garlic. But, of late I have found that isn't a much of a problem since I can plant squash in that bed after the garlic is harvested.

Here is an interesting article on growing garlic in containers, and the first two paragraphs sums up the issues with it: https://www.thespruce.com/growing-garlic-in-containers-848231

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/11/2020, 8:53 am

That's interesting; it almost looked like the garlic (in the scapes picture) had the leaves trimmed...I have never done that.  I just harvest the scapes and let the plant keep going.
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/11/2020, 1:20 pm

I haven't ever trimmed the leaves of the garlic either, SR, the plants need them for photosynthesis.  I occasionally pinch off yellow ends of the leaves, but that is about it. BTW, you'll love the almost 3' long scapes from the Music garlic!  Very Happy

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/11/2020, 8:57 pm

@OhioGardener wrote:I haven't ever trimmed the leaves of the garlic either, SR, the plants need them for photosynthesis.  I occasionally pinch off yellow ends of the leaves, but that is about it. BTW, you'll love the almost 3' long scapes from the Music garlic!  Very Happy
Wow!  Yes, I love scapes!  I can’t wait to try them—think I will make some pesto out of them.
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Post  nrstooge on 10/13/2020, 10:06 am

I don't find spacing for garlic.. I have Music Garlic and want to plant in my raised tabletop bed.. it will be covered in plastic for the winter.. I have 8 cloves.. 4 per sq ft?
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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/13/2020, 4:41 pm

I have done 9/SF and 5/SF, not sure that I honestly notice a difference in the harvested  garlic...just depends on how huge the ones are that I’m planting.  When I do 5 it’s like a square with a dot in the middle.

https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t22242-garlic-sfg?highlight=Garlic+spacing

There are a whole bunch of garlic threads on this site!


Last edited by Scorpio Rising on 10/13/2020, 4:43 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Found the thread)
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/14/2020, 7:59 am

Took advantage yesterday of a beautiful fall day to take a break from gardening to enjoy a Fall Color Tour Road Trip, which included a stop at Urban Farmer to stock up on all of the garden seeds for next year.  Today I'm going to clean the pole beans off of the arbor, and then all of the beds will be ready for winter.

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Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/15/2020, 7:14 pm

Raining and cold front moving in now; hopefully with the cooler weather I can get the trellises cleaned off and put away.  And other things!  

OG up here, the leaves are gorgeous!  But this rain and wind will really take a toll on the foliage!  

Only thing left to really plant is garlic....
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Post  OhioGardener on 10/15/2020, 7:28 pm

SR, the rain started here about 1:30 this afternoon, and was constant until 8:00 this evening. The rain brought in a cold front. It is supposed to get down to 39ºF tonight, and tomorrow night is is supposed to get down to 30ºF. The last thing I have to pick tomorrow are the cucumbers before the frost/freeze kills them.  I'm going to throw a frost cover over the bed with the lettuce, kale, chard, and spinach tomorrow evening to see if that can be kept for a few more weeks before the real cold weather starts. Other than that, the gardens are done except for the cold frame which has lettuce, spinach, and radishes growing in it.

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Post  OhioGardener on 10/16/2020, 8:57 am

Picked the last of the cucumbers this morning. Going to miss the fresh vegetables over the long winter months.  Had a light frost last night, the first this fall, and we have a freeze warning for tonight. So, the gardens are done for the year, except for the cold frame which will produce lettuce and spinach all winter long.

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