it's been a hot week.. brutally hot. last weekend i went on retreat to a slightly northerly vacation to swim in a lake and escape the city, and when i returned the garden had had another growth spurt, and outgrown most of it's stakes. because of the heat [even at night, augmented with killer mosquitoes!] i hadn't much of a chance to fix it, especially since last week i had just tied everything up to the top of 6 foot stakes there wasn't much i could do without taller ones.
finally the weather cools down, but there are only a few moments before a frightening black cloud erupts over the peninsula unleashing one of the craziest storms we have had in the past decade. the lightning was something to behold.. the wind and rain was spinning and intense, and somewhere in the weather mash up the garden took a beating. when we went out to check midway through the storm we could see that almost all of it had been pushed right down to the ground.
our last garden patch was completely surrounded by a wooden fence which acted as an excellent wind break, and saved the garden from damages like this. the more wild, almost entirely freestanding method from last year's place doesn't work here, as the field next door is an open invitation for the wind. this is the first time all year we have felt it's wrath, and this has been a key learning point for next year's garden.
i hadn't expected this patch to get as enormous as it did, big thick healthy stocks and tomato plants and vines far taller than i am. the land is fertile, our bed building method worked like a charm, and we've gotten far more rain this spring/summer than we have in the last five combined. it was just a mash of all the perfect elements to help the bed quickly overgrow and get out of control.
i suppose the fact that we weren't expecting to have a garden this year [and then built one last minute] is a contributor to the minimal staking method we went with.. after all was said and done support structures were minimally in the budget. many pieces were recycled. we had expected that the only way we would get to grow anything this year was going to be in minimally maintained patches cached away around the town, we wanted to see if it was possible to build small patches that require minimal support and care. our findings conclude that with proper wind break, it is completely possible, as long as the bed is built well in the first place.