The Garden Plot

Ray Baird

Six weeks of heavy holiday recycling – From now until New Year’s Day will be a season of generating much trash. It is also alarming the amount of the trash generated that could go into the recycle bin with just a small amount of effort on everyone’s part. Take time to recycle plastic containers, cans, bottles, newspapers, boxes, cardboard containers, and milk cartons. Educate children and grandchildren to be recyclers in guard our environment.

Can we have any snow during November? The answer is that it is possible but not very probable. Even in the North Carolina mountains, they may see a testing or some flakes. The temperature of the soil is still warm in November and most hard freezes that freeze the ground start in December. Even if snow occurs in November it is usually short-lived because the warm soil will quickly melt. No matter if it just dust the lawn, snow in any amount generates a certain amount of expectation and excitement for kids and adults!

A butterscotch cream pie for Thanksgiving – this is a simple and easy pie that is melting your mouth good. Here are the past simple ingredients: two envelopes of Dream Whip, 24 ounce boxes of Jell-O instant butterscotch pudding mix, two 3/4 cups milk, 1 tablespoon vanilla, 1 9 inch pie shell (baked and cooled) Step 1: Combine Dream Whip with one cup of the milk along with the vanilla in a large mixing bowl and beat in high with electric mixer until the topping foams and makes peaks. Step 2: Add remaining milk and pie filling mix in mixing bowl. Beat on low for half a minute and on high for two minutes, scraping ball several times. Step 3: Spoon the mixture into the baked and cooled pie shell and refrigerate for four or five hours. Makes eight servings. Store remaining pie in the refrigerator. Serve with Cool Whip on top.

Covering outside faucets for winter – As mid-November arrives we can expect hard freezes and ice in the mud holes. It is also time to remove outside hoses and roll them up. A good investment is the purchase of a vinyl insulated faucet protection cover to keep pipes from freezing. A cover can be purchased at Home Depot or Lowe’s for around $10 they can be removed and quickly attached to the sides of your house and only requires four screws to install it to the house. These covers will last for many years and have foam insulation inside the cover.

Week before Thanksgiving is great time to wind down the leaf harvest – Most leaves have now fallen with the exception of the mighty oaks which will remain for a while longer. With some comfortable days and hopefully dry days, this is a wonderful opportunity to rake, blow, and vacuum the remaining leaves and use them to make compost, mulch and as a blanket for garden cool weather vegetables and cover flowerbeds.

A heavy presence of Jackfrost in the Piedmont – There are plenty of frosty mornings in the area as roofs and lawns are white on most mornings in plenty of crystals on the car’s windshield to give defrosters and ice scrapers a workout. The beauty of the frost is evidence by its icy crystals on the leaves of collards and the greens of Siberian Kale and turnip tops in the garden plot.

The old fashion taste of peanut brittle – From thanksgiving until Christmas, the arrival of the old-fashioned peanut brittle chunks of broken caramel coated syrupy peanut brittle that becomes an addictive yummy treat. The parched peanuts highlight the sticky syrupy mixture. The very best is made in the peanut country of Norfolk and Suffolk Virginia and from now until New Year’s is sold in many supermarkets in 1 pound boxes for less than $2. When you open the box, the fresh aroma of parched peanuts wafts from the box and tantalizes the taste buds. What a treat at this time of year!

The grass of all the making its last hurrah – The grass of late autumn is on it’s last leg of the 2017 journey and it will soon experience the last mowing of the season. The last grass of the season is tough so make sure the frost has dried before you mow.

Taking care of the furniture on deck – The deck table and chairs have served well since early May until mid November and now it’s time to protect it until next spring. You can store the furniture in the basement or invest in the patio table cover. The cover cost about $50 and is made of durable vinyl. The cover will protect the chairs, table and you can also store the folded umbrella under the table. You can purchase them at Lowes or Home Depot.

Making garden plot look better in the winter – To make the garden plot look good in winter remove all vines and stalks of spent crops. Store all tomato cages and supports for vegetables. Make your garden have signs of life even in winter by planting cool weather vegetables.

Ray Baird