It is good to remember that it is likely each year a crop will probably fail. Failure is relatively cheap when growing from seed. One seed packet is an investment of $3-$4. So while it can feel a big fail, it had so much potential for success the investment is worth it.
But the weather plays such a big factor. This year was a fantastic, warm summer. We grew so many cucumbers and dill pickles we still have jars of them preserved. We gave them away, we ate them and we preserved them. The previous year was a very wet, cooler summer and my cucumber plants went brown and died.
Sometimes crops just take awhile to get going. I grew runner beans (blue lake runner beans) and in the first part of summer, I thought they were okay but not a great crop yield and they were quite small beans. However through the months they just got better - bigger beans and more of them. We were picking enough for four people every few days.
Having a wide variety of vegetables planted, that suit different conditions, increases the likelihood of having some good wins.
Enjoy the wins
Watermelons were a stand out achievement this summer. I grew the seeds inside and didn't plant them out until late November. I planted Moon and Stars variety. All summer we watched them grow, watering them frequently and then as they got bigger, lifted them off the garden with plastic trays so they would not rot. We waited until the curly bit from where the fruit was attached to the vine, went brown and when you tapped it, it sounded hollow. A lot of tapping was involved.
The watermelon was sweet and juicy.
Kumara were another great performer. I only planted a small patch but it returned 4.5kgs of kumara. This year they were expensive in the shops, so it was double win.
It is not you, it is the variety
Trialling different varieties of a vegetable also allows you to work out what works best for your garden soil and weather conditions. I am still working out the best varieties of tomatoes that suits our climate and also how we use tomatoes. Carrots are another one I am still undecided what variety works best for the soil conditions.