Gardening · Homesteading

November On The Farm

I have found this year, since we moved onto the land, that I haven’t quit learning. It is different here, even though we are in the same grow zone as our old place. Last year, I knew about when it would freeze, and the plants would go to sleep. It’s been a lot longer here on the island. November was to me a month of learning and waiting.

On November first we had 9 hours and 55 minutes daylight. That would change soon enough. This alone taught me something – the farther North you move, the less day you have. So in the core hours of 10 am to 2 pm, work must be done!

Even at the end of the month, the Lavender is still gorgeous – and on warmer days, when it gets into the 50’s, the native bees still show up, moving rather slow, but still stopping.


For the past couple years I had a Chilean Guava Berry plant stuck in a 5 gallon bucket. I found a home for it, after reading up and finding out deer don’t like it. Had I realized that, I’d have replanted it in the spring!

One project in early November was redoing the two beds on the hillside, below the house. In October I took out the blueberry plants and put them in the orchard. I moved in all the red raspberry starts I had grown through summer, and raised up the level of the bed.

Fall has brought a varied display of fungi, all through the now opened woods.

Marigolds still in bloom in mid-month.

The first bed down in the lower fields. We put in the garlic and got it ready for winter. Slow growing kale and spinach are on the other side.

Garlic bed.

I had to leave our Bay tree behind at the old place, so I have been babying a start since spring. It was moved down to the lower field, behind the deer fencing.

Early to mid month we had a lot of sunny days. When California had the huge forest fires, the sunsets were amazing that week over the Olympic Mountains.

Another project was the lower bed by the house. It had held golden raspberries from starts I grew.

I added in more soil, more wood chips and a frame inside.

The red raspberries were edible till about the 3rd week of the month, when there just wasn’t enough daylight for them.

So, with everything else winding down, we started to focus on the upper woods. While we cut a perimeter trail/path this summer along the west/east line of our property. to remove dead trees, the back of the land has just sat there, an utter mess.

If one removes the blackberry canes, the salal and lower branches, cutting a path isn’t too terrible to do. It takes time and brute force.

Fungi, everywhere.

These are my favorites. They push up through the forest floor debris, some are dinner plate size.

More small ones.

The boys setting up a fire in the fire pit, before it gets dark.

Every tree stump from our opening is covered in some form of fungi, helping the break down.

While I do know many of the mushrooms and fungi, I don’t touch any of them. Leave that to the animals.

November 27th and I was harvesting alpine strawberries still.

The white and yellow varieties were still going as well.

But… the end of November we were down to 8 hours and 45 minutes of light and freezing at night has started. December is the month for cooking, baking, working inside and dreaming of next year’s planting – and doing a lot of holiday markets!