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“A garden is never so good as it will be next year”

August 24th, 2014

“A garden is never so good as it will be next year”

– Thomas Cooper

Yes, I’m already mulling over the garden plan for next year. I find it to be of great value to do it this time of year when what you would like to change are fresh in your mind. As you walk around the garden, take a note of things that didn’t go quite as planned. One of the main things I want to bring back from previous gardens is the tripods for trellising climbing beans and cucumbers.
green beans  2
There’s a reason Thomas Jefferson used this method for his climbing plants year after year. I’ve tried many different methods of support and these have been my favorite by far.
thomas jefferson teppee
This winter I plan on heading out into the woodlot to start collecting large saplings for using as trellises. I also need to build trellises for peas and other climbers and I’ll be looking for good trees to use for tomato supports as well. Bigger, better, more natural supports is definitely the area I need to think about now and plan so I can collect my supplies while the garden is asleep. I’ve also been thinking about the quantity of each variety of vegetable that I want to grow, noticing what we eat up quickly and what seems to linger on the vine too long. The results should be better use of my garden space with less work wasted.

What things are you noticing this year that you want to change next gardening season?

8 Comments to ““A garden is never so good as it will be next year””
  1. Jennifer Fisk on August 24, 2014 at 7:37 am

    I have vowed never to plant the entire package of Patty Pan Squash again. I may move my garlic space too.

    Reply to Jennifer Fisk's comment

    • Laura on August 25, 2014 at 8:00 am

      I am totally moving my garlic too, it did NOT work where I planted it. Opps.

      I’m also going to try pumpkins for the first time and not get too discouraged.

      Reply to Laura's comment

  2. Nebraska Dave on August 24, 2014 at 8:24 am

    Susy, it’s just in a gardener’s nature to want to improve things next year, don’t you think? My list is long and my ideas are many. The overall plan has come together in a most amazing way but the details are far from being accomplished. The constant improvement of garden structure has been the focus for the last three years. The results of gardening this year, as you know, were disappointing for sure but I too have bigger plans for next year and as I stated before, there’s still some of your tomato soup in the storage room waiting for that cold winter day. I did harvest an eggplant the other day but gave it away. There’s more coming so I should be able to savor some fried eggplant soon.

    Have a great 2015 garden planning day.

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

  3. Jill on August 24, 2014 at 11:06 am

    I have started a list of things to start from seed, and where I would like to place certain flowers next year. My main goal is to get cover crops seeded before the weeds take hold, which sadly did not happen this year. I also know now how much my boys loved eating peas while in the garden, so must double or triple the amount of those that I plant. More diligence in fertilizing, work out some edging for a flower bed, finish my pond, ideas for by the front door….with a new house and yard there is so much to do and so many possibilities :) tiring but fun!

    Reply to Jill's comment

  4. Sarah on August 24, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    I’ve been growing cucumbers on my chain link fence since moving here and this year I vow to start putting them somewhere else. It works great until the plants really start going and all the shoots go over the fence and down into my neighbor’s yard.

    Reply to Sarah's comment

  5. Lindsey @HalfDimeHomestead on August 24, 2014 at 10:15 pm

    This year I definitely didn’t plant enough zucchini (yeah, I know. How is that possible.) And my ideas to grow some tomatoes in containers didn’t go so well.
    Next year I will be focusing on low water gardening techniques – deep planting, tons of mulch, lasagna beds, etc.
    Natural supports are where it’s at! I cut down a bunch of dead limbs off of various trees in our 1/4 farmlett and used them for bean supports in tee-pees. One of them is 15 feet tall! With beans climbing right to the top and then some.

    Reply to Lindsey @HalfDimeHomestead's comment

  6. Wendy on August 25, 2014 at 12:08 am

    Priority #1 for us next year will definitely be keeping the deer out. As we sadly learned this year after ALL of our shelling beans were mowed down (all 7 rows of them), it doesn’t matter how great the soil is and how wonderfully things are growing if the deer can still get in. They have been relentless this year. :(

    Also, after our first year attempting to grow tomatoes and cukes in a hoop house here in the Pacific NW, I’ve learned that I plant things in there earlier. Everything is growing by leaps and bounds, but I’m not sure everything will ripen in time.

    I, too, have loved my homemade limb teepees–I didn’t do any this year and have missed them.

    Reply to Wendy's comment

  7. Kathy on August 25, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Omigosh…where do I start? Definitely plant garlic in a sunnier location, and if I try for beets again, they need the same. Sugar snap peas were nice, but were ready a lot later than I thought they would be, which conflicted with when my bok choi was ready. I loved the bok choi, will plant that again next year with more spinach.

    I’ve decided to only grow heirloom tomatoes that we plan to eat fresh and purchase my canning tomatoes from the farmer’s market. I can get a bushel for about $20, which is pretty cheap, plus that allows me to plan for canning versus having to deal with vine ripened tomatoes at home every 2-4 days like this year. I planted 24 tomato plants in my raised beds, plus about 15 more in pots that I grew from seed. I harvested over 200 lbs of tomatoes! We’ll use all the sauce I canned though!

    Paris Market carrots were cute as a button, but not practical. I originally wanted to pickle these little darlings, but failed to realize that I would have to peel all of those tiny carrots! Oh well.

    I planted ground cherries, which I picked, husked, and froze for jam making when the weather cools off. All the herbs were a delight, especially the parsley and basil.

    My biggest pest this year was the crows. Bird netting helped, but need to plan for stronger interventions next year.

    Reply to Kathy's comment

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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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