Age-Old Wisdom meets Modern Tools
Top 6 Ways to Stretch Your Growing Season
Are your beans, tomatoes, and garden crops still producing? There are ways to extend that season just a bit longer. We’ll show you 6 techniques.
How to Extend Your Harvesting
1. Keep on Picking
Allowing zucchini to grow into marrows slows down the production of new flowers and fruits, and beans will stop producing new pods if the ones already on the plant are left to dry out.
Check plants often and harvest fruits and pods before they get too large or over-ripe. If you’re going away from home for more than a few days, ask your neighbors to harvest them – they’ll get free food and you’ll come home to continued pickings!
2. Keep Watering
Fruit and pod-producing vegetables are particularly thirsty, and water-stressed plants don’t produce well. Water regularly for consistent soil moisture to help plants continue to produce plenty of well-formed fruits and pods, and avoid problems such as blossom end rot or fruits splitting.
3. Continue Feeding Plants
Continue to water organic liquid fertilizer on to hungry fruiting vegetables like tomatoes, peppers and eggplant every week or two to insure more fruits of better quality.
4. Top Up Mulches
Top up mulches with new material such as seed-free straw or grass clippings, which is plentiful during the summer to help keep roots cool and moist during hot, dry-weather.
5. Reduce Shade
Consider cutting back any overhanging foliage, and remove spent crops promptly so that those that remain can bask in sunshine and enjoy good air circulation.
In cooler climates, wash off or remove any greenhouse shading to trap more of the late summer sunshine.
6. Keep Plants Warm
Later on in the season plants can be persuaded to keep cropping for a week or two longer using a floating row cover. Remove covers during the day to enable pollination and replace it in the evening to keep plants cozy.