For example, I worried through much of the 2013 season that the garden's yield had diminished--our tomatoes in particular. We knew that the season had started slowly, and some of our crops did not produce as we expected. It is only now, after I entered the data from our log into the rickety spreadsheet that I use for harvest analysis, that I understand that the garden's performance is in line with the annual averages. I also discovered some pleasant surprises.
Ginkgo grew and donated 1,138 pounds of vegetables, fruits, herbs, and flowers in 2013. The season's peak occurred on September 14, when we harvested 154 pounds, 70 of which was fruit.
This year's yield was well within a standard deviation (233 lb) of the six-year average of 1202 lb. The yield is slightly better than that of 2012 (1083 lb), but far short of 2009's bumper crop (1617 lb), which was an obvious outlier.
|Weekly and YTD yield comparisons, 2008-2013|
This year's harvest was shorter this year--only around 20 weeks, instead of the usual 25 or 26 weeks. This was partly by design: instead of trying to eke out a few more weeks of 10-20 pound harvests, we decided to use the last few weeks of available City water to irrigate our cover crops.
|Weekly comparisons, 2008-2013|
The following table shows comparisons by crop. Crops are highlighted in green if new for that year; in blue if the yield was significantly larger than normal; and in red if significantly smaller than normal.
|Yields by crop, 2008-2013|
- artichokes, which we finally succeeded in growing (even if only 2.5 lb)
- cabbage (26 lb)
- kale--a whopping 117 lb. (I did predict early on that 2013 would be an annus borecolus; but I had no idea.)
- peas (17.5 lb)
- lettuce (5.5 lb)
- peppers (7.9 lb)
- radish (7.3 lb)
- spinach (0.3 lb)
|Vegetable Crop Composition Comparison, 2008-2013|
|Fruit Crop Comparison, 2008-2013|
|Herb Crop Comparison, 2008-2013|