It’s no secret that the first frost is always a tough one. Lots of gardeners try to cover and protect crops from the frost. People will go to great lengths to protect the plants. Homesteaders all over will take the time to keep their garden going. I fully support this and literally have a goal to be like them one day in the future. But for now, I am not like them.
The first frost is our way to harvest all the produce that we can and then we wait to see what happens. I know that may really frustrate a lot of people as covering plants can be the easiest task to do to save plants. But hear me out. I promise these are solid reasons why we don’t and I think you will fully agree.
Once the first frost is over we go back out to the garden to see how the plants faired. If they managed to get through then we obviously are thankful for a little more time to harvest. But here’s the real part of why this is our game plan. This is our way to say it’s time to be done with the garden for the year. We go crazy for the garden from April until the first frost. To which is not as long as many people but stay with me. That is like 7-8 months of gardening, harvesting, and projects for the garden. But we also have the harvest to worry about. We can, dehydrate and freeze dry all of our harvest aside from eating from the garden. This takes a decent chunk of time.
We take the “off season” time to really focus on random projects, homeschooling, my personal business, my schooling and any other random tasks. We are really busy people to be honest so the frost almost is a way of saying “be done with this project for now” and focus on different projects. The garden being done is almost a way for us to come closer as a family. We spend more time inside being together during the cooler seasons so the garden being done is the first signs that its time to clean up on some projects and get ready for more quality time.
The garden is such a peaceful place and we truly love being able to enjoy its fruitfulness during the winter but its together for how we enjoy it. Our kids are learning how the hard work during the summer is now the fruit for the winter. When we open the canning jars around the table, everyone knows just how much we appreciate it.
Maybe down the line we will try our hardest to extend the growing season as it does offer such a wonderful way to provide food but for now we will continue to be done by the first frost. So many people do such a wonderful job extending the time but my momma heart screams it’s time to be done. I can handle having one less thing on the plate and using that time instead to really enjoy the kids while they are little.