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It is August now

August 1st, 2012

It is August now. There are currants and gooseberries to preserve, tomatoes to tie up and watch anxiously for the first ripening, potatoes to rob of the smallest, most succulent tubers, cucumbers to take when they are as slender as a finger, the last few pods of peas to eat raw as we gather salads for every meal. It is August, and the garden is paradise.

Joe Eck & Wayne Winterrowd in Living Seasonally: The Kitchen Garden and the Table at North Hill

These guys live in Vermont, so their gardens are a little behind mine here in Ohio. I’d have to categorize June/July as the paradise months in the garden. Though the tomatoes don’t really come on until August so you have give August some love for that reason.

Peas are long gone here in NE Ohio, they quit producing when the temperature starts heating up in June. They’ve been replaced by beans, both bush and climbing. Only have handful of beans have been harvested so far, but soon enough I’ll be picking them by the bowlful!

The salad plants are also a distant memory except for a few pungent arugula plants that are still hanging on. I quite like very peppery arugula so we’ve been enjoying it on sandwiches.

The peppers are leafing out nicely and just starting to bloom. A few small Thai pepper plants have a few fruits. Luckily I scored a few green peppers from a local farmer at the market last week. Those were cooked up into sloppy joes.

Potatoes have been coming on for over a month now. Yukon Gold and a red variety (most like Cranberry) have been gracing our plates. In a few weeks my Kennebec will be ready to harvest and tucked away in the pantry.

The garlic and about half of the onions were harvested. They are being replaced with a late planting of beans, beets and various herbs. The red onions will be ready to harvest this week and a few late plantings will be harvested next month.

My mom’s potager is doing really well this year. All of the years she’s spent building the soil is really paying off. Her soil retains water better than most because of all of the organic matter she adds each year. Check back Saturday for a tour of her garden when I was over last week.

What’s the best month of the year for your edible garden?

12 Comments to “It is August now”
  1. Kathi on August 1, 2012 at 7:31 am

    The vegetable gardens look their best in late June,but produce the most in late July to early August. Still waiting for my first tomato of the year.

    Reply to Kathi's comment

  2. Rhonda on August 1, 2012 at 8:10 am

    Usually it’s Late July/early August but this year my garden has been so sad for all the 100 degree days we’ve had — everything got absolutely BAKED. It didn’t matter how much water I gave my plants, they just couldn’t take the heat. I’ve picked a few nice tomatoes but not enough to can or anything. All of my peppers were eaten a while back but three plants managed to make it back somehow — I picked 4 jalepenos from them last night. The cucumbers are pathetic. My Tom Thumb popcorn was totally eaten a couple of weeks ago. I only had a tiny 4 X 4 bed because I just wanted to see what would happen if I planted it. No I know — some critter came in during the night and knocked it all over and ate every ear! GRRRRR. I still have a 4 X 4 of Strawberry popcorn, so we’ll see if that makes it. This was my first year for potatoes and my potatoes seem to be the only item that is doing any good at all. I’ve dug up Yukon Gold and Rose Gold so far, only because they were looking pretty tired. I’ve still got Butte and Bintje potatoes in the ground. I’ll be doubling up on my potato growing next year because they are GREAT!I’m going to try planting some late green beans just to see if I can get anything. I’m hoping for a very late autumn this year. Hopefully it will give some of my plants a second chance.

    Reply to Rhonda's comment

    • Susy on August 1, 2012 at 8:28 am

      Hopefully a late planting will recoup your garden year! Bet it was those pesky coons who snuck into your corn.

      Reply to Susy's comment

      • Rhonda on August 1, 2012 at 11:46 am

        I think it was coons too! GRRRRR

        to Rhonda's comment

  3. Songbirdtiff on August 1, 2012 at 8:58 am

    By the time we get to August in Arkansas, everything is pretty worn out, Mid-July is probably our most magical time…when we aren’t in a drought.

    Reply to Songbirdtiff's comment

  4. Donna B. on August 1, 2012 at 9:16 am

    Anytime I’m harvesting something is a good month. :D
    July has been good to me though, plenty of beans and tomatoes and zucchini to be found! Although the drought that we had early in the month really had a way with my peppers/eggplant… I forgot to water some days and a pesky critter chomped them almost to the ground!
    Although I’m trying really hard to tell myself that it’s okay to cull the zucchini plants in favor of fall-producing things. I did though plant a whole 4×10 bed with golden peas and yelow wax beans!
    Yum yum!
    Can’t wait on your post on your mum’s garden! ♥

    Reply to Donna B.'s comment

  5. Shannon on August 1, 2012 at 10:39 am

    Here in western Washington late August- to early September is when my garden is at its peak.

    Reply to Shannon's comment

  6. kristin @ going country on August 1, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    Usually September, because of tomatoes and potatoes and green beans all going strong. This September? Forget it. I can’t even contemplate the garden at the moment, what with the weeds and the drought and the no-time thanks to motherhood and everything.

    Next year. I keep my thoughts focused on next year, which has to be better than this year.

    Reply to kristin @ going country's comment

  7. misti on August 1, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    In the spring, April and May seem to be the best whereas October seems to be good in the Fall. Right now—blech!

    Reply to misti's comment

  8. whit on August 2, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    I’m envious!! Our soil needs desparate help! The beets, melons and corn we planted in it have performed horribly. Only have the beans sprouted, and the sunflowers never did. It’s only our first year here, and trolling the Internets, i found a few negative reviews regarding the quality of produce the former farm was selling from this land. With the soil the way it is, i can see why.

    Around the Pacific Northwest, it seems like there are 2 distinct times of plenty–June/July for spring crops and Sept for summer/fall crops.

    Reply to whit's comment

    • Susy on August 2, 2012 at 12:13 pm

      Sounds like it might be a good idea to invest in some rock dust to remineralize & restore your soil. Have you heard about this?

      Here’s a great link:

      Restoring and Remineralizing Topsoil

      Reply to Susy's comment

  9. KimH on August 2, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    I think August & Sept are probably going to be my biggest bumper months..
    Right now, I’ve got loads of squashes, cukes, and cherry tomatoes hitting me like gangbusters.
    I have some larger tomatoes starting to turn red, but not a huge amount yet, though my plants are loaded.
    My peppers arent very loaded this year. The plants look beautiful so Im still hoping & praying.
    I have a couple okra plants with baby okras on it and since its such a hot and dry year, Im hoping that once they get going, they’ll produce like gangbusters too. Crossing my fingers…

    And speaking of gardens & produce… I’ve got to get to the garden to get it picked for today. :)

    Reply to KimH's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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