I’ve had a lot of volunteer potatoes popping up throughout the garden. Some of them quite deep. The best thing to do with volunteer plants (if you know what they are) is to
- replant them, filling in areas that didn’t sprout. If you find you have too many to care for, you can also
- give them away. The third thing you can do with volunteers is to
- create a “patio garden” – placing them into containers and using them to either dress up your porch, create a border up and down your driveway, placing them on bare spots on the lawn, near trees if they like shade, or
- below and beside the compost pile to take up any leaching nutrients.
The rest of the garden “volunteers” consist of weeds, most of which are at the edges of the beds. They are easily turned over, though there have been a few clumps of resilient grass that have begun to grow through the root ball too. These have to have the soil shaken from them, then we either lay them out on the driveway or on a piece of plastic until they’ve dried out, after which they are added to the compost heap.
Many of the surrounding grasses that have not been mowed have gone to seed, so they will be left alone for about another four weeks. The comfrey are in full bloom, and the bees are having a field-day, so I will wait for the blossoms to drop before I cut them back (to about 0ne foot tall), placing the stalks onto the compost heap, or – if a quick shot of “green” is needed, mowing them and taking the bagged grindings to either make a “tea” with, or just putting them under a little bit of top soil. Leaving them on top of the ground, especially with the wet weather we’ve been having, is an open invitation for the slugs, we’ve found. Under a couple of inches of soil, they break down quickly and the worms appear to appreciate it.
Sadly, we have not had any “Matt’s Wild Cherry” tomato plant volunteers this year, which have been a perennial favorite for snacking when in the garden, so they will be on the list for next year, if I can’t find the seeds I’d saved last year.