September 19, 2012

Fall Planting & Garden Updates

Over the past few weekends we've been trying to clear out planters from the spring and summer plantings, harvest and preserve herbs that are beginning to get at the end of their rope, take care of the plants that will fair through the fall and winter and even plant a few new fall "container crops" here and there as we have space and time. Today we'd love to just give a catchall roundup of how things are looking for our fall plants so far!

First up, we're pretty thrilled that the new fall greens we planted weekend before last are already sprouting up and looking like they are gonna do well. We were able to plant new trough planters with arugula, spinach and mesclun greens...

This past weekend, we went ahead and planted 3 cloves of garlic:

Planting garlic could not be easier, and it's so much fun watching it grow throughout the winter and spring — you can even plant it in containers if you don't have a yard or garden to do it in. Each clove of garlic will end up producing 1 full head when ready for harvest.

You'll want to push your clove about 2 inches into the soil with the pointier side facing up:

Pack loosely with soil, give a healthy watering and prepare to watch your garlic grow over the next several months!

It's funny to think this time last year we were tackling our fall plantings and starting garlic for the first time in our old house — read up on the details with more tips for planting garlic in this post from last autumn.

That takes care of all our latest fall plantings — now let's check in on what we've already been cultivating!

Our pepper plants are still thriving in their planters out front:


These guys have continued to grow and produce peppers throughout the summer and are looking like they might just keep on keeping on throughout the fall. We're thinking about trying out this amazing looking recipe with the peppers you see above for Sunday Supper.

Our sweet potato plants are growing and vining to no avail:

We have yet to see any purple flowers, but are keeping a close watch on these guys and are pretty excited at how well they've done considering where we started back in March.

Our newly transplanted grapevines have been hanging in there and doing just fine from what we can tell. We started trying to lightly train them by tying some of the vines with jute twine to different supports under the landing area we have them in:

Even our strawberry plants are hanging in there. If you look closely you might notice the tiny green berry beginning to poke through this far into mid-September:

Let's move indoors, shall we?

OK, the avodaco tree we transferred into it's own planter has done well enough that we moved it from the stand right up against the window to the floor under the window:

We'd eventually like to move it into a floor or desk corner of this room but are nervous the leaves might brown like they have in the past when we've moved them too far from the window — so we are just moving this guy around in baby steps.

Just above the avocado plant, still hanging out in the window, is our celery plant:

We've loosely tied some jute twine around the base stalks of this guy to try to keep growth vertical instead of so horizontal. We also put a few healthy scoops of new soil into the top of the can since the soil had began to go down after watering it everyday. It's been working well like this for about 2 weeks without any issues. The stalks continue to grow and thicken and we've been able to just cut them off as we need them and new growth just shoots up through the middle of the plant. It's been pretty mind-blowing, considering we started with just a worn out celery base to get this plant going.

Outside of our own fall plantings, we've been meaning to grab a shot of this to share on the blog:

Every morning when walking Basil we pass by this house in the fan that has literally been growing pumpkins in their front yard. As you can see, the vines have taken over their front yard and spilled over onto the sidewalk in a really beautiful way.

Here's a closer look at what's been growing:

It just goes to show how easy it can be to grow throughout the year, even in small spaces or containers. We give props to these neighbors taking advantage of what little space they have to grow these awesome pumpkins!

So that's what we're looking like these days! Have you tackled any fall plantings or beginning to preserve the end of any summer crops?


  1. I haven't planted anything new for fall and I probably won't get to it. I'm still getting sweet and hot peppers, tomatoes and I just cut off our last cabbage. I have a couple of lovely little pumpkins that are turning orange now. I had no idea how large pumpkin plants got until I planted them a few months ago.

    1. You are doing better than we are Monica! Those pumpkins sound awesome and yes — the plants can take over!

  2. It's currently spring here in Aus and my veggie patch is pretty empty but got a few shoots of broad bean flowering away like there's no tomorrow.

  3. Love your gardening!! Do the garlic grow through the winter outside without freezing? I should try that...

    1. Hey Jasanna — YES! The garlic grows throughout the winter and you harvest in the late summer!

  4. How much space needs to be in between each garlic clove? And does it need much sun? i live in good old grey and wet Vancouver, BC and am wondering if this could work for me indoors since I don't have an outdoor space!

    1. Hey Trish, the garlic cloves need about 6-8 inches apart if you have the room and they should do well so long as you have some sun even if it's not complete direct light!

      Let us know how it goes if you give it a try!

    2. thanks, i will update if it works out!

  5. How do you keep squirrels from eating your vegetables? I have tried strawberries, tomatoes - they eat everything. This year I am doing Sweet potatoes ( they should be ready soon) and I just started some brussels sprouts. We went out of town for a few days and all the leaves on my brussels sprouts have been completely eaton! Just wondering if you have any tips. Thanks and I really enjoy your blog.

    1. This is definitely a constant battle. We have a dog that goes in and out quite a bit and with such a small space maybe we keep them on edge enough to not chance coming in the yard very often. Not to say they have not gotten to a few things from time to time.

      Thanks for stopping by and we hope you visit often.

  6. You're going to find more success with all of you're water grown plants if you start adding nutrients to their water. Plants don't need soil, it's only a medium for them to grow in, they take out water and nutrients from it. If you add these nutrients to the water you're using on some of your plants, you will find they grow just as quickly as with soil. There are many instructional videos online about how to properly dilute nutrients in water without soil. (Look into hydroponic nutrients)


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