On this chilly mid-October day, a bowl of steaming, hearty chili, full of garden goodies sounds like the perfect order. Besides, it looks like frost may be coming so you better get out and cover those plants with Agribon row cover or harvest what you can. Grab the rest of your beans and okra. Time to get those herbs inside and drying. Snip the rest of those colorful peppers, eat them, dry them, or freeze them. Pick the rest of your tomatoes! If you have green tomatoes you can pick them and they will continue to ripen or you can just make a delicious batch of friend green tomatoes. Make a beautiful bouquet with your remaining flowers for your home or give them to friends.

A happy first year grower eating her peas and picking peppers!

The Dessie Scott Alternative School for boys classroom garden has one box planted full of fall goodies. They have been eating salad and cooking in their classroom. The boys are so proud of their garden they are eating things they have never tried before and loving it! They are even using the spinach in the cafeteria for everyone to enjoy. Unfortunately the boys cannot be pictured working in or eating from the garden as the students are protected from such exposure.

Cabbage worms are a struggle sometimes. Just gotta keep picking them off. Of course, you could spray some organic insecticide… but I’m holding off for the freeze.


Delicious nasturtium growing in the demonstration garden show off their seeds which will be saved for next year’s planting! Plus chamomile for tea!



The bees are enjoying the flowers, humming and buzzing right along in the cool October days, getting drunk on pollen and flying kindly crooked to their next blossom.



Fall crops of parsley, cabbage, kale, and broccoli tucked into their nice warm mulch. The last, and very happy basil which is ready to be made into pesto and frozen into ice cube trays for winter enjoyment of the summer abundance: can you find the freeloader in the basil?



  1. In a 3-quart saucepan cook and stir ground beef, sweet pepper, 1/2 cup chopped onion, and the garlic over medium heat until meat is brown and onion is tender. Drain off fat.
  2. Stir in tomato sauce, undrained beans, undrained tomatoes, chili powder, salt, basil, and black pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. To serve, ladle chili into bowls. If desired, top each serving with cheese, chopped onion, and/or sour cream and pass crushed red pepper. Makes 4 main-dish servings.

From the Test Kitchen

Chili for Two:

Prepare as above, except divide all ingredients in half.

Cincinnati-Style Chili:

Prepare as above, except omit sweet pepper, basil, and optional garnishes. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, 1 tablespoon cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper with the tomato sauce. To serve, place 1/2 cup hot cooked spaghetti on each of 4 serving plates; make an indentation in center of each portion. Top each serving with some of the chili, 1 to 2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese, 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped onion, and/or 1/4 cup additional kidney beans.