I did very little to put my garden to bed this year. No kale was covered in oak leaves. No walkways mulched. No tomatoes patches cleared and covered in compost. After weeks of freeze and thaw, I finally went out to check on the fall turnips (they were gilfeathers). I thought they'd be too small to amount to anything, but they weren't. They were all there, and boiled, their greens were sweet and good.
I don't think people who garden need very much. Over the weekend, I put a couple sweet potatoes in water to grow slips. There are dreams of sweet potatoes all next winter. Sweet potatoes and roasted apples and turnip greens.
While I ate my roasted apple and turnip greens, I watched the juncos outside the window. They were eating seeds from the vervain I transplanted there. I hadn't put much thought into that vervain, but it gave me so much pleasure that day. Maybe in a couple years, my garden will get the care I want to give it. But even now, even as it is, it's all still good. It's all still here.