CARSON GARDENERS ALMANAC
by Atman Kohlrabi
Gardening in Carson requires special timing and effort. With a growing season as short as sixty days in some years, itís not easy to always bring in a good harvest. Use this handy almanac of local gardening experience as a guide.
January: Windy and icy, frigid, look at seed catalogs, imagine living in Florida, the worst is coming.
February: Windy, cloudy and cold, heavy snow possible, start planning garden, organizing seeds.
March: Really windy with icy rain and mud, start tomato plants in house or greenhouse. Add amendments to soil; manure, compost, humates, etc., if weather permits.
April: Gusty winds, freezing temperatures, start lettuce, peas, broccoli and other early plants in garden, replant tomatoes frozen in greenhouse. Prepare garden beds. Repair hole in fence made by dogs. Replant peas.
May: Extremely windy, warm, cold at night; weeds proliferate; start herbs, squash, melons, etc., inside. Replant squash, melons and other starts too near the window killed by unseasonable cold. Replant plants eaten by rats in greenhouse. Repair beds trampled by dogs when wind blew gate open. Irrigate surviving plants.
June: Windy and hot daytime, but too often freezing at night. Weeds do very well, bugs too. Place greenhouse plants in shade outside to acclimate before transplanting. Expect to lose 50% or more to grasshoppers, thrips, other unidentifiable bugs, late freezes, dogs, cats, birds, etc. Stop by nursery to buy more starting plants. Get more insect repellant.
July: Windy, partly cloudy and hot, broccoli, spinach, lettuce go to
seed. Heavy rain starting late in month causes mold on broad leaf vegetables,
squash, melons, cucumbers turn yellow, curl up and die.
August: Windy, intermittent showers, heavy at times, cooler; tomatoes doing fair but those alien-looking tomato hookworms will munch them all down if you donít catch them first. Check after dark with a flashlight; mulched plants weakened by mildew, whatís left may be wiped out by early freeze. Buy local produce at Farmerís Market.
September: Windy, warm and freezing. Surviving plants felled by arctic
surge mid month. No more local tomatoes this year, except maybe in Dixon.
October: Windy and freezing cold, salvage seeds if birds and bugs leave any behind. Going over expenses, you find that you paid roughly nine dollars per pound for your garden produce.
November: Windy and bitterly cold for extended periods. Garden hibernates. Dream of the Caribbean--mangos, pineapples and coconuts.
Windy and buried in snow, garden impassable except in winter boots. But Spring
is coming, oh boy!