There’s not much to report this week, in the lull between summer and autumn. I’m still harvesting tomatoes and have a mound of garlic all cured, cleaned, and trimmed. Jalapenos will (finally) go in the dehydrator soon in preparation for a second batch of hot salt.

Although first frost is still a month away, I’ve begun the first step of putting the garden to bed for winter, clearing out brown and drooping plants past production. Next comes raking, then scattering winter rye seed and sprinkling it with old hay to prevent runoff while it germinates.

The garden isn’t done growing yet, though, as the butternut squashes continue to swell and begin to ripen and the sweet potato vines hint at the harvest to come. If all goes well, broccoli, collards, and kale might show up in October as well.

Late summer is also a time of preserving, and last weekend I finally finished canning tomatoes: sauce, salsa, and diced. They sit in neat rows in my pantry alongside a few jars of dilly beans and dandelion jelly. An abundance of basil means two bags of pesto cubes in the freezer and a jar of dried, crumbled leaves in the spice cabinet. Of course, the freezer also contains beans, shredded zucchini, and more tomatoes (whole and diced).

Come visit the New Market Farmer’s Market tomorrow afternoon to scoop up some of these flavorful heirloom tomatoes for yourself before the tomato vines decide they’re done! I have plenty of garlic, too, as well as practical hand-knit and -crocheted items like scrubbies, dish cloths, and skillet handle covers.