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Onions and potatoes

Garden favorites in late August, early September, are what's underground -- potatoes, onions and carrots. You plant one little chunk of a seed potato and dig for treasure at the end of summer, perhaps just two giant ones, perhaps a cluster to be dug out. Onions are right on the surface, fat and yellow, bulbous and white, round and purple. The purple ones are frequently called red onions, but they are definitely purple, and this past year, they kept well in the cellar until April when they were all gone. 


Carrots are not as dependable as onions and potatoes. Sometimes they don't even wake up and come up. This year every seed came up, thinning was essential but didn't do enough. So some are fat, some are small, all are sweet either cooked or raw, unlike the tasteless but long and perfect ones in the supermarket. (The long won't work here. The clay soil likes stocky carrots that don't have to grow six or seven inches into the ground, which is apparently too much work for a carrot.)


And this year, a perfect sugar pumpkin stands out orange in the vines that ramble wherever they please. If the wandering turkeys don't whack at it, it's a prime candidate for pie or spicy bread. Weather and temperature permitting, several more are growing there.


As for the turkeys, they create little dust bowls in the garden this time of year, supposedly a way to get clean. Odd to take a bath in dirt! And they relish the seeds on the weeds that seem to get a new lease on life in August.


French onion soup, carrot ginger soup, leek and potato soup -- backyard helpers for days of ice and snow to come.









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