November's harvest is primarily branches, blown out of the willows in the past few days. The garden is cross hatched with them until you can barely walk the path. So picking up branches and raking leaves is a job for one of the sunny, brisk and breezy days predicted in the next week.
But that not's quite all. We have a lot of lovely bok choi and kale which is green and vigorous. I will pick some of that bok choi when I'm finished with branch-picking. I've been saving it for lasagna and lasagna it will soon be. I often use spinach in lasagna, but the last couple of times I've used bok choi, which is just as good, and could hardly have been any fresher. The cold snap we had earlier wilted the bok choi temporarily, but it roared back to life and is actually growing in the cool wet weather we have had lately. And, as a bonus, it has outlasted the cabbage moth caterpillars, who tried to eat us out of bok choi, but finally pupated or were eaten by birds. (I am hoping the latter.)
The kale never seemed to even notice the cold. It's only about eight inches tall but it's vibrant green. I think I will crop the outer leaves, cover the plants with row cover and see if we can get an early spring crop from them along about March.
Nestled among the kale plants are volunteer carrots, which are far too small to pull. I will snip them off to give the kale more room. The variety of carrots I chose were the size and shape of a small radish. Unfortunately they tasted like carrot-flavored soap. At the end of the kale row, invisible in this picture, except as a yellow spot, is golden-leaved oregano. It would make a lovely ground cover in the shade garden, but will not be in my veggie garden next year.
Time for the Brussels sprouts plants to come out. The "sprouts" range in size from a pea to a small marble. I don't think I would grow these again for food value, but they are strikingly beautiful plants. Of course the bed under the willows where I planted the poor things had only an hour's unobstructed sun, so I should be thankful that they produced anything at all!
I have garlic to plant, just need to decide where. But it's almost time to put the garden to bed for the year, and begin dreams of next year's garden, which will be perfect in every way. Or so I imagine, as I thumb through the seed catalogues and read other's gardening blogs. Perfect....