I decided I want some fresh sage for our upcoming Thanksgiving feast, so Don dug up a sage plant at my old house to move to our new one. He dug up a little hazelnut shrub we'd like to try to save while we are at it. It was one of three we planted as part of a research project for the National Arbor Day Foundation. Two of these special hybrid shrubs died, but this one lived, although it hardly thrived in its old location. We hope it will fare better when we move it up here where the soil is a little better than at the old house. I'll attach a link that shows us originally planting the three shrubs. Personally, I think the compost may have been overdone/too fresh/part of the problem for the shrubs, but the hard-packed clay at my old location was NOT the place to plant them, according to materials I received with the shrubs. Visit Hazelnut Shrub Project for those who want to see how we planted them at the old location.
So far the tomato plant and pepper plant are still alive despite the first hard frost the night before last. The cloche is protecting the tomato. Don also put a water jar in the cloche to absorb the sun's rays and provide some thermal mass to keep the plant warm at night. The sunny location against the warm bricks at the side of the house seems to help, too.
I planted some peas a few weeks ago in an empty planter to provide some green manure and protect against erosion this winter. The peas are coming up vigorously. They are a cold-hardy pea and should make it all through the winter, by my guess. I didn't inoculate them, so I hope they will actually fix nitrogen in the planter. A type of bacteria has to be present in the soil for the pea plants to do their job of transferring nitrogen from the air to the soil.
I promised myself I would start gardening here at Don's slowly and methodically as we have time to build beds. But I caught a sale of 2011 seeds at 50% off at Seed Savers Exchange, and already I can see that we are going to have to start thinking about putting in several beds to keep up with all the gardening I want to do. I bought tomatillos, three kinds of tomatoes, two kinds of pepper plants, cucumbers, nasturtiums (which are edible), and I can't remember what else. I also saved seeds from last year's garden, and I want to plant onion sets, different kinds of garlic, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pole beans, zucchini, and possibly Hubbard squash as a trap crop. Whew! I may have to invest in one of those online garden planners to keep up with planning out what goes where, crop rotations, etc. Even if I grow just a select few of each kind of plant I want to grow, this is going to take up some space. And we want LOTS of tomatoes...