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Just a few days from my last post and, even though it is still very warm, you can feel fall coming. I don’t know if it’s the colour of the light, the angle of it, or the slightly shorter days but it just feels different. So I’m getting excited about the winter gardening and thinking back to what worked this past spring and summer.

At the beginning of this season, we were plagued with slugs eating tender young leaves on our beans. Libby found out that egg shells sometimes help. They really do! We crunched up washed egg shells and spread them as a perimeter around each plant. It stopped the slug damage immediately.

I have planted arugula in the last week and I know the slugs will be looking for it, so I’ve been saving egg shells for a few weeks and just putting them in plastic bags in the freezer. It will give me a great stock of them right when I need them. I’m thinking about putting some arugula under my kitchen window as well. Might do that this week.

The other growing problem at the community garden is the less than ideal soil. We’ve taken two actions on this one. One was to get my daughter Cass, who works at Starbucks, to save me coffee grounds every few weeks. We used these to side dress plants and, just like the rest of us, they seem to thrive with the coffee! We can also get inexpensive compost at the solid waste facility in Delta. We do compost at home, but the harvest is meagre and I generally use it in my home gardens. At the dump, we drop off some junk, then pick up some compost in the empty garbage can. Libby worked this in around the plants and that has helped a lot.

I found out from New Moon Acres that one mustn’t plant garlic beside onions…so I’m sizing up the lay of the land, deciding where I can put the garlic where it can lay undisturbed through the spring and into next summer, without taking away real estate we’ll need next spring. It’s a bit like garden chess…

Meanwhile, I made yummy bruscetta tonight with some of our beautiful tomatoes and basil which I grow here at the house. And even with using up quite a few tomatoes, I have a lot left, so tomorrow we make sauce again!

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