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The Squash Garden Patio Project

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June 21, 2016: Future Patio cordoned off

I had this grand plan over the summer – I wanted a patio area, so we could entertain. We live in a small house of maybe 900 square feet on a large lot of around 6,000 square feet – all the comforts without any extra interior space. Literally, the office, the living room, the dining room and the den are all in one room – about 16 feet by 18 feet. Having folks over for dinner or a visit is a bit of a challenge. So, the Grand Plan: cordon off some outside space, have a patio installed, build a cover and voila – Space to entertain!

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June 21, 2016: Facing North. The Grand Patio Plan (15 feet by 17 feet)

But time was against it – another project held higher priority – and it didn’t get done. And because I had watered the area in anticipation of obtaining bids and going forward with that installation, some kind of squash volunteered to take up space.

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August 7, 2016: Volunteers and Recruits

Seeing an alternative opportunity, my husband decided to supplement the volunteers with some recruits – having started seedlings without borders – and planted some corn, some pumpkins, some butternut squash, some acorn squash, some spaghetti squash, some zucchini and some yellow squash, and some watermelon. A seemingly innocent plan for some winter vegetables…

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August 19, 2016: Volunteers are the larger plants, Recruits are smaller but catching up, Corn rises in the North.

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September 9, 2016: Baby Pumpkin, one of many

Then we went out of town for 10 days during which time my son came by to water the plants so they wouldn’t die off. We came home to a small field of green leaves.

The garden just keeps growing…

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September 13, 2o16: There are many immature fruit under all that leaf cover: butternut, acorn, spaghetti and pumpkin. Watermelon volunteer sports leaves in the foreground. (Can you spot the baby watermelon?)

This is the squash garden, with corn accompaniment, today:

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September 18, 2016: Around 9:00 am this morning… and still it grows.

I’m not clear on how we are going to get the squash out of the garden – I picked two zucchini last night, found after a ten-minute search. Horticulture Professor Husband says that the winter squash plants die off when the fruit is ready, so that will make those easier to find, if the plants don’t cover the entire property first. We can walk behind. The watermelon and the zucchini squash … that’s a different story.

I am truly grateful that we have a place to grow such an abundance of food, that the soil is happy and healthy, and that the plants seem bountiful. I hope you enjoyed this snapshot of the fall garden. Patio project on hold until next Spring.