The Garden Plot: August heat leads to autumn dreams – The Stokes News


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The fog of late August mornings and the cool heavy dews have sent subtle warnings about the coming of autumn. Mid-August is certainly the advent of the transition of summer to autumn, slowly but very surely.
Yes, there are signs that autumn is on the way. A few maples already have some yellow leaves and summer vegetables are slowing down.
At least the thoughts of cooler weather is a pleasing state of mind on hot August days! My aunt Lessie always said as she sat under an oak tree “It’s better to think about snow even in hot weather than keeping your mind on the summer heat.”
Late August usually will bring rain and relief from extreme heat. This will pave the way for sowing seeds of cool weather vegetables such as mustard greens, mixed greens turnips, collards, onions, Siberian kale, broccoli, cabbage and spinach. At your garden shop you can choose from a mix of mustard, rape, kale, broad leaf, tendergreen, turnip and others. Sow the seed in a shallow furrow about three or four inches deep, add a layer of peat moss to the furrow, spread the seed and add another layer of peat moss and an application of Plant-Tone organic plant food. Hill up soil on both sides of the furrow then tamp down. Add water when there is no rain in the forecast. When the greens sprout, side dress with another application of vegetable food.
Siberian Kale is rapidly becoming America’s most popular green; it’s no wonder because it can be served as a vegetable or a salad and eaten raw or cooked. Kale is sweet, tender and winter hardy. I’ve even harvested kale when snow was on the ground! Sow kale seed in a shallow furrow about three or four inches deep, cover bottom of furrow with a layer of peat moss, sow the kale seed and cover with another layer of peat moss. Apply an application of Plant-Tone organic vegetable food. When kale sprouts, side dress with Plant-Tone.
Set collards, cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower about 18- to 24-inches apart. Place a layer of peat moss in the bottom of the furrow to help retain moisture in the soil. Apply an application of Garden-Tone or Plant-Tone organic vegetable or plant food in furrow before hilling up soil on each side of the furrow. In about two weeks when plants are established and well on their way, apply another application of Plant-Tone and hill it into the soil on both sides of the row.
Feed the plants with Plant-Tone and hill it into the soil once each month. As the weather cools off later in the month, apply a layer of crushed leaves between the rows for protection later on when cooler temperatures arrive.
I hope your autumn crop of tomato plants are off to a great start. Side dress them with Tomato-Tone organic tomato food and pull the soil up on both sides of the plants for extra support and moisture retention.
Apple Dumplings
As we get closer to the arrival of September, the apple harvest will soon be upon us. This is a quickie recipe for preparing apple dumplings that the family will enjoy.
9 tart apples
1 tube of biscuits (about 10 biscuits)
1 cup sugar
1 Tbs. apple pie spices
½ cup light brown sugar
1 stick butter or margarine
1 cup evapolated milk
Cool Whip or ice cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut five apples in half, remove the cores and set aside in a bowl of salted water (to prevent browning). Cut the other four apples into half-inch cubes and set aside in a bowl of salted water.
Open canned biscuits and roll out each completely flat. Wrap half of each apple in a flattened biscuit, and place into a 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking dish sprayed with cooking spray.
To the cubed apples add sugar and spices and spread over the top of the apple-biscuits. Sprinkle brown sugar over top. Melt butter drizzle over the top, then pour over the evaporated milk. Bake until the dumplings are golden brown. Serve with Cool Whip or vanilla ice cream.
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