Wishetwurra Farm, December 31, 2015

December, 2015 is as good as gone. It’s time for another trip up the ladder. Time to take another set of photographs of the garden, and time to give yet another monthly tour. Coming soon: the Wishetwurra Farm wrap-up essay for 2015.

Shadows are low, and long and strong at this time of year. These pictures were taken at noon, and already a third of the garden had seen the last of the sun for the day.

We look at the north end of the garden…


Asparagus fronds have been cut and taken to the burn pile. We’re still picking cole family greens from the middle area. The rest of the green you see is oats and radish cover crop. They are still green because we’ve had such (record-breaking) warm weather.

We look to the middle.

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All the strong green you see is oats and radish cover crop. Nearer the fence, in the seaweed mulched area, are three rows of emerging garlic, planted a few months ago. Below that middle patch of the garden is a mix of leftovers and dead things. Peas and early crops will go here next spring. Then, during the summer and fall the area will get a major digging, manuring, and soil-improvement workover.

We look to the south. A green hose snakes across rough ground. I drained the hose, coiled it up, and brought it inside yesterday. About time, too.

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This photo could be from early November. There’s not been any cold weather yet. No one except a few snow bunnies seem sad that winter has not started.

Let’s look into the greenhouse.


Lots of greens here. Chard, bok choi, lettuces, parsley, mache, miners’ lettuce, spinach, baby coles, and you can’t see the row of tulip bulbs, planted just for early pretty, come next spring.

Walking around at ground level, you see that the cover crop of radish and oats is still lush and green.


An orgy in the fall garden. Oats and radish have at it on a bed of manure.

The leeks are covered lavishly with beautiful eelgrass mulch.


Thanks, friend ‘Bert, who out of the blue brought a gift of a truckload of eelgrass. An hour after you left, the pile that was outside the garden gate was inside, and tucked around the shanks of these leeks. With this kind of protection, they’ll keep through the winter and into next spring.

The garlic has come up well.


Fall-planted garlic. To be harvested next July.

Looking around more closely, we see a broccoli side shoot.


A lusty chinese cabbage hunkers down nearby.



This cabbage got harvested yesterday, and made a heck of a salad. We ate it with some fried yellowtail flounder and some steamed potatoes. Please pass the butter.

Over in the “miscellaneous greens and other things” bed, this little lettuce is a volunteer, sprung from a spring lettuce that was allowed to go to seed. Why shouldn’t you have “weeds” that are plants you want to eat?


Each year I try to let plants I like go to seed. I’d rather find a nice claytonia than a nest of chickweed.


Claytonia, or miners’ lettuce.

Mache, embraced by advancing arms of chickweed. Another volunteer.


Mache is the new ten-dollar name for what everybody used to call “corn salad”.

It’s the end of the year and flowers are still to be seen?


Cole flowers. A bolted chinese cabbage flashes a final yellow flame in the face of approaching winter.

Over at the house, there’s even a last rose, nestled by the mudroom door.


The last rose, not of summer, but of fall.


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