The cool weather is here, and with it the frost. Not too much yet, enough to crisp the squash and cucumbers. Most of the tomato plants are still hanging in there. The little currant tomatoes act as if it’s spring and they’re just getting started.

I’m putting up the tunnels over the tomato plants, cutting others back. I’ll be mulching them to see if I can’t winter them over. Depends on what kind of winter we have. It’s not like I can’t start several hundred in several months and still be innundated with tomatoes next year, but I figure as long as the plants are in the ground and I have the oportunity to give it a try, I’m gonna give ‘er a try. Tomato plants are perenials in warmer climes, and we’re able to winter over some tender bulbs as long as we don’t get a killer winter.

I’ll be test driving the cardoons this evening. If they’ve lost their bitterness, y’all will have some cardoons in the share this weekend. The beans are moving into shelly mode, and I might have some scarlet runner beans. I tried one off the vine this afternoon, and while they’re hairy, that really doesn’t interfere with fresh eating. Amazing. I also picked a very large pod, pulled the string on it, and what do you know? The seeds are huge and bright pink. A bit starchy raw, they’d be better cooked, but they’re not bad raw.

The peas are still doing well, and the kale’s coming back. I also cooked up some of the brussels sprouts leaves in a stirfry along with broccoli and cauliflower buds. Really good. The brussels sprouts leaves are a bit bitter when tasted raw but turn almost sweet when cooked. I haven’t tried steaming them but I imagine that if steamed part way to soften they’d be great for cabbage rolls or wrappers to hold about any kind of filling you could think up.

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