I have about 10 posts swirling around in my brain right now. Most of them revolving around debriefing after the summer garden. On a normal day, I would do a list (for SHG) but today, no. I will have one ode to the forgotten garden item. The one I am sorely missing now that the weather has turned cool an it is time for soups. And that item...
The past several years I have started the leeks early. Ridiculously, absurdly, unreasonably early. I put the seeds in the dirt in January. They are ready to plant out early in March. Then they are still small as the weather warms. You can eat them, certainly, but they are quite onion-y. None of the subtle sweetness. And small. Hardly-worth-it-for-heavens-sake-just-buy-a-scallion. So I would leave them in the garden, growing along until fall, when they would look fat and lovely and be mild and delicious. Especially after the frosts. I would have leeks through Thanksgiving. I mulched them heavily to try to prevent the splitting from the outsides freezing, but then they would get a little slimey. None the worse though if you pulled off the outer leaves.
This year, THIS year I thought I would get clever and put off the planting of leeks until mid summer. They take 120 days, and since you want the growth to all happen before the last frost, you have to count back 4 months from October 15, which would be....um, right June 15. Which is precisely when the rest of the garden is packed with other goods. So this year, not only did I forget to start the little beggers in May/June, I wouldn't have had any space if I had. Poor planning indeed. And the price is no lovely leeks for soup or smashed potatoes. Dag. I miss those critters.
Frankly, I have never done the onion thing well, but I have muddled through with the leeks. I'll have to not think too much about it for next year. Thinking seems to be where I really get myself in trouble.