October in the Garden

Mid-October through September has been a challenging time in the yard.  Many of the seeds I started did not come up.  Many of the plants I started outside were devastated by caterpillars and a hungry chicken.  The garden and harvest are not looking pretty!

Seed & starts going outside

  • Carrots: Nantes Scarlet, Little Finger, Sugar Snax, Rodelika, Mokum
  • Cherry Belle radishes
  • Leeks: Bleu of Solaise, American Flag, King Richard
  • Italian large leaf Basil
  • Tiny Tim Alyssum

I did a second sowing of radishes and carrots to try and make up for the many that didn't make it past the Cutworms.  I moved the leeks and Alyssum outside. The basil is also out in the garden, although not protected yet.  I have a cold frame I keep against the house, but I'd like to experiment and build a second one that fits directly over the raised bed and will shelter the basil.  I think the basil will do best if it can be out of a pot and on a drip system. 

Things being potted up

  • Lettuce:  Little Gem, Speckles, Flashy Trout's Back, Black Seeded Simpson, Buttercrunch, Avicenna
  • Italian Dark Green Flat Parsley

Check out the Flashy Trout’s Back lettuce in this month’s picture (number 2).  Right in the middle of the starts is a one that came up deep red.  I’ve planted Flashy Trout Back lettuce before, and I find it really fun that the lettuce has a lot of variety in appearance.  I’m sure it’s not a good thing if you were selling it commercially, but I think its great for the home gardener.

Things being harvested

  • Strawberries
  • Rhubarb

I'm disappointed that I planned so poorly this month.  Almost everything that was being harvested last month has been entirely consumed. My family eats salad almost every night, so a lag in production is very noticeable.  I now must supplement with grocery store purchases until last months starts can take off.


My garden is looking extremely shabby!!! Cutworms attacked almost everything, and I was slow to respond.  I also had a day where one of my chickens (affectionately named Alcatraz) escaped while I was at work and wreaked havoc on the plants.  Like Godzilla in Tokyo, Alcatraz pecked, tore, scratched, and mauled everything in her path. Check out this month’s bottom picture to see her tragic destruction.

Last thoughts

As this is a new blog, I am experimenting with what to write and post.  I wish I could leave out this month's picture of the yard, but I think it’s important to accurately chronicle what is happening each month.  I’d love to hear what you think is working with the blog or not.  Drop me a line and let me know.  Like this month’s garden, I optimistically think the blog can only improve from here.


October 2015 - Between cutworms, Alcatraz, neglect, and poor planning, this month's garden is an uninspiring site.

September 2015 - When the garden was looking better.

Last month's plant starts before being planted out or potted up: 1 Little Gem lettuce, 2 Flashy Trout's Back lettuce, 3 Tiny Tim Alyssum, 4 large leaf Italian basil, 5 large leaf parsley, 6 7 & 11 leeks, 8 Black Seeded Simpson lettuce, 9 Avicenna, 10 Speckles lettuce, 12 Buttercrunch lettuce

Ack! Chicken carnage!! Alcatraz escaped for the day and tore everything up!