Sarah in Illinois has shared periodic updates about her vegetable garden over the summer. Now it’s time for her final report, also known as the medal ceremony.
For the third year in a row I would like to sum up how well our garden produced. Unfortunately overall our garden did poorly. While I was complaining about this to Steve he said that some years are just like that, you can do everything correctly but weather doesn’t always cooperate.
As I have in years past 2016 and 2017, I’ll rank my results in the style of the Olympics.
Gold Medal Winners
Kale – Our Kale did wonderfully this year. My step-daughter and I love kale chips and we made a few batches and could have made plenty more.
Broccoli – Steve was in question whether 8 broccoli plants were too many. The answer was no. We had so much fresh broccoli and as much as we eat, we could have used a few more plants. Side note: our favorite way to eat it is coated in olive oil and seasoning and grilled.
Tomatillos – After two years of nothing, I finally got a very productive tomatillo plant. I did learn to make salsa verde and have decided that tomatillos will now be a staple in our garden.
Sunflowers – I didn’t plant any this year for some reason but it worked out because we had several volunteers!
Silver Medal Winners
Tomatoes – Our tomatoes acted so strangely this year. They flowered and came on quickly, then they stayed green for much much longer than normal. Then they flowered again and produced red tomatoes. Not our best year for them, but we still had plenty fresh from the garden.
Green Peppers – After planting about 12 plants, I figured we would have more peppers than we could use. But honestly, we really didn’t have that many. Then when I finally found peppers on the plants they were really soft and past being ripe.
Jalapenos – I was able to gather just a couple jalapenos this year. Much different than the overabundance last year.
Cucumbers – Somehow I only planted pickling cucumbers this year, even after specifically buying different varieties. This is the first year we did not grow our vines up a fence. I would like to bring that back next year.
Bronze Medal Winners
Sugar Snap Peas – I think I picked less than a dozen pods. But stay tuned for a fall planting post from me in the future.
Potatoes – We were able to dig up two messes of potatoes. One was used for fried potatoes and one was used to potato salad for a family get-together.
Blueberries – This is literally all that I picked, but the bushes are new and I have high hopes for next year.
Radishes – I picked a few, but only a few.
DNF “Did Not Finish (produce)”
Brussel Sprouts – I think the area of the garden that these were planted stayed too wet all year. The plants looked okay but they did not produce any heads at all.
Carrots – Nothing. Not even a sprout.
Cherry trees – Ugh! Deer enjoyed my cherry trees. So much so that both trees died. That should be a post on it’s own. I will have to formulate a new plan and buy new trees in the spring.
Cauliflower – The plants looked nice and green but did not produce a single head.
Zucchini – Nothing came up at all.
Expecting to have all gold medals winners is unreasonable but I really would like to not have anything in the DNF category. I’m making notes and hope that next year is even more successful.
How did your garden do this year? Anyone else feel like this year was worse than normal?
I feel like our entire garden was DNF this year, Sarah (#blamethebaby). So I take solace from your results! (And you have my sympathies.) I’m hoping we might yet find some potatoes in amongst the weeds.
Sorry to hear your garden was less than stellar this year. Especially the cherry trees, ouch! The broccoli looks so good though.
These were my very thoughts. I was super impressed with that broccoli!
The broccoli was amazing! We’ve always had great luck with broccoli.
Cherry trees 😢. Makes me sad to think about them
What with the heat, drought, deer, followed by endless rain and deer, my garden was less productive than other years. I had tons of green tomatoes that I gave away, so-so green peppers, and some huge, ugly carrots. The garlic, however, was excellent. The onions, not so much. The potatoes, grown at my friends’ farm, we underwhelming.
Oh I even forgot I had planted onions! They didn’t do a thing either. Garlic is something I’ve wanted to plant for a while and still haven’t done, darn it!