No, I'm not crazy, this really is the start of my fall garden. Daytime temperatures remain in the 90's in Central Texas, and my little plot hasn't had measurable rainfall in nearly three months. Since the climate is acting like it's summer, with meteorologists predicting a warm, dry winter (thanks, La Niña!), I decided to plant some heat-loving seeds. And with weekly drip irrigation and daily hand-watering, they've sprouted!
I planted summer squash (this is the 8 Ball variety)
and Tiger's Eye bush beans, a new variety from Botanical Interests that were in a Seattle Fling swag bag.
I'll thin the seedlings when each has two sets of real leaves, then mulch around the plants.
The pepper plants I planted in the spring sulked all summer, but two are starting to flower now that temperatures are below 100: this serrano,
and this red bell pepper.
I left a habanero in the ground, too, but it's not doing anything, phooey.
But this Japanese eggplant plant is covered with new blooms.
The Bright Lights chard is still going strong. (After two years, the Fordhook Giant chard is fully worn out; its knarled hearts and roots will be dug out and new seeds planted later this month.)
This spearmint died to the ground in July but came back from the roots with a little drip irrigation.
Now, if we only had a bit of rain and a drop of about five degrees, I'd feel comfortable planting carrots, broccoli, and fall herbs. C'mon, fall! Texas is ready to welcome you with open arms.
Words and photos © 2009-2011 Caroline Homer for "The Shovel-Ready Garden". Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.