|My life will be forever autumn.|
The plant on the right as the herb basil, a sexy annual that works hard all summer producing fragrant and edible leaves, but which eventually flowers and then calls it a life. If you look closely at the stalks there, you can see the flowers on top. Those brown spots are dried flowers, which also happen to contain the seeds we need to re-grow basil next year. Each former flower contains 3-4 seeds. Getting them out is of utmost importance.
Or is it? Since I plan on growing basil in this particular herb garden again next year, I purposely left a few that I hope will just fall to the ground and re-grow. So we'll see how that goes.
But the accepted harvest method is to snip off those flower stalks, mash them by hand in a bowl, then carefully separate the tiny seeds from the browned chaff. I've done a bit of that, at least enough to cover planting for next year. What a pain. One will never grow rich harvesting basil seeds.
So I'm also trying something that I hope will work better: I cut all these stalks off whole and rammed them top-down into a 1/2 gallon canning jar. Then I left them on a sunny counter top. The idea is that if/when they dry, they'll drop their seeds to the bottom of the jar, making them simple to collect. You just pour them out.
So anyway, I'll let you know how that goes.
UPDATE: On another note, the cuke ladder, replanted with blue lake beans, is a smashing success - we blanched and froze a ton of beans today, plus had some with dinner. My original planting, now almost dried up completely, got jealous and kicked in one more picking of beans.
So I'm wondering. I fully plan to plant cukes again in the spring in this bed. And they will have had a planting of something else between them. So does that qualify as 'proper' crop rotation? Inquiring minds want to know...
* Utterly ignore what I said about the pear season being over. While I was lopping off pear tree branches wasted by fire blight, the lovely and gracious Rogue quietly picked 25 gallons of pretty sizeable pears. So next weekend is already scheduled to be spent canning .