In final preparation for tonight’s potential freeze, we picked all of the tomatoes still hanging on the vines.  Most of them are green—we will have to decide whether to fry them up or pickle them or do something else—while one or two are showing a hint of pink.  They’ve been patiently waiting for the sun to ripen them but the days are now too short.

Next, we clear-cut the lettuces.  They have gotten slightly bitter with age but paired with citrus (Rachel’s trick for balancing the flavors) and the almost-ripe tomatoes, they will make a fine final salad of the year.  On the other hand, given the mesclun’s determination and perseverance, I will not be too surprised if they return for another round (I’m not holding my breath, either).

To complete our harvest, we started sifting through the French Filet (low) and Blue Lake (high) vines, looking for ripe string beans.  At first, I thought that we would not find very many—previous yields have been modest—but apparently I hadn’t been searching thoroughly enough.  After checking each vine top to bottom, left to right, we ended up with a large zip-top baggie full of beans.

Before heading back into the house, I pulled out a tarp to cover the radish sprouts.  If they can survive the freeze, they might still make it to maturity.  I used pieces of stone to hold the tarp in place (I never did get around to paving the perimeter of the planters) and will hope that it is sealed well enough to retain the heat of today’s solar radiation.

Oddly, Saturday’s cool temperatures are expected to be followed by unseasonable warmth on Sunday and Monday.  October can be a difficult month to predict, lodged as it is between September, a month more closely aligned with summer, and November, which often feels more like a winter month.