The key to summer planting, I’ve discovered, is “little and often.” As one crop comes out, another takes its place as successional sowing kicks into high gear this time of year. When I pull out a cabbage, in goes the seed of a summer squash or cucumber; when I pull out a pea plant, in goes a seed of corn; out pops a radish, in goes a beet. By continuing to sow in this way throughout the summer, I should have a steady supply of fresh vegetables for our family to enjoy right up until the first frost of winter. I’m learning that I don’t need to plant massive amounts of every plant. By sowing a few, short rows, or even just a few seeds, I’ll be supplying our family with a constant and varied source of yummy edibles over a longer period of time, and at a rate that’s far easier to harvest than by sowing vast quantities all at once and only once — endless amounts of vegetables ripening all at once isn’t always a good thing. As I’ve learned, unless you are prepared to eat or preserve it, a lot of it will end up as animal fodder or clippings for the compost heap, which I don’t necessarily consider a complete waste –nothing grown in our garden goes to waste! — but since the main purpose of our garden is to feed our family, I like the idea that sowing smaller and more frequent batches will put more food in our tummies than in our goats’ and chickens’.
— As a side-note, I also do the same with weeds. When I pull one out, I drop in the seed of an annual summertime flower or herb, like a marigold, zinnia, basil, or dill. Since no two pieces of matter can occupy the same space at the same time, the flower or herb seed prevents the weed from growing back in the same spot, and, if I don’t like the way that particular flower or herb looks, I simply pull it out and plant something more to my liking in it’s place!