We had a successful fall clean up at the garden yesterday, with me, Tracy, Sarah, and Alexis all pitching in. Four pairs of hands made the work go by quickly--we pulled vines off the fence, raked leaves, picked up a little trash, and filled four big paper yard waste bags. Yvonne stopped by and said we could dump them in her compost bin a few blocks away, so I used my granny cart to ferry the bags over once we were done (and the Patriots were done with Tampa).
One pleasant surprise--we found two large cucumbers and two smaller ones buried under the leaves along the fence. There were also at least a pound of green beans to be picked (we had our share for dinner last night).
We pulled all the spent vines, but decided to leave a few of the greenest pole bean plants still attached. It just seemed a shame to pull them while they're still alive and kicking, and they provided a luscious contrast to the vibrant yellow maple trees dotting parking lot by the fence. In a few weeks, they'll die back and we'll go back and pull them out. We left the signs on the fence for now, but we need to print some new ones that will be more appropriate for the winter months. Next year, the new planting scheme of doing ten-foot blocks of the same plant along the fence should make clean-up a lot easier.
We had several people stop by and thank us for the garden (one woman went away with a cucumber and a handful of beans). We made sure to mention that we could use more help next year--I hope they'll follow up.
It was a perfect day to spend outside and a great reminder of why this whole project is worth doing.
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