We put a lot of time into our gardens to ensure the best results. Even those of us with a seeming knack for growing plants still have to attend to the many rigours and tasks involved in getting ripe and delicious fruits and vegetables. Preparing feels like way more than half the battle. But, the joy that comes with the fruits of your labour is overwhelming in its own right too.
Still, your responsibility to your edible garden doesn’t end after you’ve picked, plucked, threshed, unearthed and sewn your yield. Indeed, the preparations for the next season must begin immediately. Several tasks await the edible gardener after harvest, which we get into detail about right down below!
Four Tasks for After the Summer Harvest
Empty and Clean Pots
Remove the old dirt and the dead plant matter from your pots and give them a wash. This will help ensure mould and rot don’t accumulate. You can prevent plant disease and illness by taking this necessary step. Feel free to take any healthy-looking soil and add it to your compost as well.
Trim Back Shrubs, Trees and Perennials
You’ll want to keep your trees, shrubs and perennials in order with selective trimming at this time. Many of these plants become so voracious that they consume everything around them, so keeping them tidy and contained is well worth it. Plus, they’ll be going into the dormant season soon enough, which means your actions won’t cause them to overreact.
Mulch Your Beds
You’ll want to do this as one of your last steps, but mulching your beds after harvest is the ideal time. The soil will have time to integrate the mulch and nutrients through the fall and winter months, ripening just in time for next spring. Speaking of which…
Plan the Next Season
With your outside activities all tidied up, it’s time to turn your thoughts to the future. Likely, this will involve no small amount of preservative-making, but that’s not what this is about. Instead, consider things like:
- What new garden beds you will introduce in the following year
- How you can improve your process from experiences during this season
- How much compost, soil and mulch you’ll need for new and existing beds
- And, of course, how to offload the excess fruits and vegetables to your friends, neighbours and family
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