Thursday, November 06, 2014

Remember, remember...

Remember, remember the fifth of November, gunpowder, treason and plot!

November 5 is Guy Fawkes' Day in the U.K., and my English husband loves a good reason for a bonfire (since that's the traditional time to burn poor Guy in effigy). And what better reason to build a fire on that day than to burn off your garden wastes to create some carbon for your compost pile, right?

Getting the fire going with scrap paper and twigs.

Of course, Guy Fawkes was just the poor sap who got stuck swinging for the gunpowder plot. The real brains behind it got away more than likely. I find it a bit telling how popular Guy Fawkes' Day has become in the U.S. after the release of the movie V for Vendetta. The idea of putting on a mask and anonymously taking revenge against those in power who want to cheat you of your rights is irresistible, isn't it? Interesting how close the day comes to Election Day in the U.S. as well... You'd hope more people would connect the two and get out and vote, making a less violent change in our society for the better. But many folks stayed home. They couldn't be bothered to take part of the political process. I guess they had more fun things to do on their iPhones or had movies that couldn't wait on Netflix. You know, important things.

It burned for some time. We had loads of tomato vines.

While we didn't attempt to burn down Parliament like Guy Fawkes this year, we did get rid of diseased tomato vines and tons of small frozen fruit that didn't quite make it. Silly how the tomato vines kept putting out flowers all through October... Didn't they realize how close the frost date was? It was a lost cause trying to produce fruit so close to winter. You'd think they'd spend their energy playing games on their iPads or Tablets, huh?

The parsnips are really going strong!

The parsnips, cabbages and Brussel sprouts all love the colder weather, so they'll hang in there until the snow buries them. Alas, everything else dies in the first hard frost of the season. We're turning over the beds and planting a cover crop of winter rye (which we grew and harvested ourselves last year) to work as "green manure" in the spring. But as of November 6, for the most part it's time for our garden to go to sleep. The rain barrels are emptied and turned over to prevent them from cracking in the freeze and the potted plants are brought inside.

Now is the time to spend energy online researching ways to improve next years' garden and finish those book manuscripts, right? Maybe even a story about a guy with a gunpowder plot to blow up Parliament?

What do you plan on growing in your garden in the spring? What things are you going spend your energy doing during the coming cold months?

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