As Summer Slips Away


Summer loosens her grip on us reluctantly in our part of Kentucky, snug on the southern shores of the Ohio River Valley. The heat and humidity claw at us through the month of August and  well into zinnia

Occasionally, though, we are gifted with a day or two of lower temperatures. A cold front from the Northlands will wash away the hot, languid air, making mornings crisp and putting a spring in our step.

As the poet Ernest Dowson declares: “Summer’s loss seems little, Dear! On days like these.”sunflowers

If at all possible, these mornings must be spent out in the sunshine. And there’s plenty to do in the garden.


Tomato blight has swept through the patch, so there’s not much left to harvest, just a whole lot of sanitizing to do. Not my favorite exercise. But for a good tomato crop next year, well worth the effort.tomato basil

The cucumbers are about played out; they put on quite a show this year. I love the look of Lemon Cucumbers, but the ratio of seeds to flesh leave a little something to be desired. Pretty in a salad, though.lemon cucumbers

Young Madeline planted one Sugar Baby  plant (in a bale of straw) that resulted in one stunted (but still lovely) watermelon. We’re thinking straw bale gardening may not be the best method for watermelons.Melon

But as Eleanor Perenyi said “To garden is to let optimism get the better of judgement.”

So who knows, we may try it again.

How many times do you try a garden experiment before moving on? And isn’t experimenting with new plants and methods part of the fun? We think so!

About Benjamin

Gardening, Raising a Family, Hobby Photography, Reading & Philoso-phizing...not necessarily in that order.
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28 Responses to As Summer Slips Away

  1. Mark says:

    Love the Perenyi quote. I’ve already started notes for how to not get so carried away next year but the footnotes read,”It’s as though he’ll never learn a darned thing.” Bet that watermelon is the sweetest thing you taste this year.

    • Benjamin says:

      Thanks, Mark! And I’m in total agreement with you. The hard lessons learned this season will all be forgotten when spring fever sets in 😉 Cheers, Ben

  2. My garden is a continual experiment. I think Fennel may be my nemesis, though I love it in flower arrangement I have not eaten one! The light in your photography is just beautiful, I enjoyed seeing your garden through that lens.

  3. Chloris says:

    I don’ t like the idea of Summer slipping away.
    You areobviously enjoying a great harvest. I love the Perenyi quote.

  4. Gardening is all about experimenting and taking chances. I don’t have much luck with melon either. Good idea cleaning up after blight. And yes I’m with you on the pip flesh ratio! Mind you they taste great and they produce like mad! Lovely pics Benjamin 😃

    • Benjamin says:

      Thanks, Julie! I’m trying to take better notes this year, so I don’t repeat the same experiments (and mistakes) I made this year…although, chances are very good that I probably will. 😉

  5. KerryCan says:

    We’re getting more of a taste of fall here in the northeast and I have to admit, I’m loving it! I like the flowers that bloom in late summer and seeing the golden light play on them. Your photos capture some of that!

    • Benjamin says:

      Thanks so much! And I agree about the light this time of year–absolutely beautiful in late summer, early fall…it makes it hard to go inside while the sun is still up 🙂

  6. pbmgarden says:

    Yesterday we too had a little cooler day with lower humidity–nice respite. Love those cheery sunflowers.

  7. Laurie Graves says:

    It’s been very hot and humid in Maine, but last night the weather broke, and it was so cool that we could feel the nip of autumn. Your vegetables a flowers are lovely. I always like my gardens best in May, just as the foliage emerges, when everything is so green and new and fresh.

  8. Julie says:

    Beautiful garden veggies. You might enjoy this link to Ruth Stout’s straw gardening tips

  9. I ate a lemon cucumber for the first time today. Interesting but for the size too many seeds. We are fighting blight too, but we had an unbelievable tomato season and we’re winding down so no worries here except trying to figure out what to do to amend the soil for next year because we can’t rotate crops. 🙂

    • Benjamin says:

      Glad to hear your tomato season was excellent! I’m planning on trying to solarize the tomato patch after I pull everything to try to kill off the some of the disease. Probably do it again in early spring just to be safe.

  10. Depends how much I want to eat something for how many times I’ll keep trying to grow it in spite of failure. If it was just an experiment, well, just once. But if it’s a favourite food, I’ll try many times (though maybe in different ways). My biggest setback is never being ready to start seeds indoors early enough (long, slow, cool season here in the UK).

  11. Cathy says:

    Oh yes, I am always experimenting and often not learning from mistakes, but always the optimist for the next year! Your vegetables look delicious in any case. 🙂

  12. Very nice and colorful garden !

  13. What a wonderful productive garden. Looks like you had an abundant year.

  14. Shannon says:

    Your tomatoes look scrumptious. On the Gulf Coast, we begin tomatoes indoors in January, wait for the worst of the winds to come and go, then harden off and put into the ground sometime around St. Patty’s Day. The cherries and grapes fed us April through July, and the Romas did a good job as ‘mater bait’ for leaf-footed bugs and hornworms (who leave the smaller varieties alone). So, no slicers here, but two pints of fresh picked small sunshine poppers (we call them) every day! Soil amended only with grass clippings, leaves, and compost.

    Our pepper crop exploded — daily bells (we eat like apples) and jalapeno (cooked into everything), but the eggplant was kept from flowering by nibble-y deer. Had to fence it for the first time since we moved her 10 years ago just to get a few fruit! Deer’s gotta eat too …

    Cheers, Benjamin. Glad you had a great summer. And Happy Gardening!

  15. I guess we gardeners are all optimists! Those tomatoes are gorgeous.

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