Monday, July 30, 2012

Harvest Monday ........................07/30/2012

My Harvest Monday post is a little late in the day. It was a busy weekend preserving the harvest. The harvests are getting much better. But, I am still way behind last year, especially with the tomatoes. Hopefully the tomato glut will start this week.

This isn't everything that was harvested this week....but, it will give you an idea of what is coming out of the garden.

A few of my celery plants died and a few weren't looking too well. So, I harvested and froze the celery that wasn't all that happy. There are still about a dozen plants in the ground that are doing very well.

The eggplants are coming in and the peppers are starting.

Some nice pretty tomatoes.....and

some more pretty tomatoes.....and

more pretty tomatoes and also the first Chinese Red Noodle Beans. I think those beans are just gorgeous!

The zucchini are coming in at a steady pace

The first heads of cabbage this year. I was pleasantly surprised at the large head of Savoy Cabbage. There are still several heads that are doing well in the garden.

The cucumbers in the Home garden are producing like bunnies! The cucumbers at the plots are dying off. There have been plenty of cucs coming in to finish up our pickle needs for the year.

While I was doing the Can-Can on Sunday, Sophia found at least a dozen tomatoes and some more beautiful cucumbers in the Home Garden. We thought this guy was pretty cute!! After his photo op, he went straight into the sauce I was making since he was a bit over ripe.

Hop on over to Daphne's Dandelions, our host of Harvest Monday to see what's going on in gardens around the globe!

Friday, July 27, 2012

The Big One!!!

Yesterday when the storm was moving in, I rushed out to the garden to harvest The Big Paul Robeson Tomato that I have been eyeing for awhile now. I didn't want to risk loosing it in the storm

Look at that Big Paul! 
The coloring in this picture is not quite right. It really is dark like a Cherokee Purple. I got these seeds from Jeff last year and we just love this tomato! It has a great flavor! Thanks Jeff for the Big Paul!!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard.................07/26/2012

I've been trying to get some of the more time consuming canning projects done before the tomato glut starts. This past week I made one batch of Bread & Butter Pickles and one batch of Sweet Pickle Relish.

I use the recipe from the Ball Blue Book of Canning for the Bread & Butter Pickles. I use less onions then the recipe calls for and ended up with 4 pints. Since there was quite a bit of liquid left over, I'm going to add some additional cucumbers to the next batch. These pickles need to sit for awhile to acquire good flavor before you eat them. We still have one jar left from last year. So, we are in good shape.

I also use the Ball Blue Book recipe for Sweet Pickle Relish. Lat year I made two different relishes from the Ball Blue Book. "The Italian" likes the Sweet Pickle Relish the best.....and boy does he like his relish!! I do make one change to the recipe by adding some tumeric to it. The relish also needs to sit for a few weeks to obtain a good flavor.

Due to my work hours, I won't be commenting on your posts and comments until dinner time.

What's been going in or out of your Kitchen Cupboard lately????

Monday, July 23, 2012

A Change is in the Air

I am officially no longer retired! Yes, I got a job in my profession! I have been looking a little here and there. Last Wednesday, I received a call from one of my contacts regarding an open position. Today, I signed my contract! I'm sure those tomatoes will start ripening by the bucket loads now!

Harvest Monday................07/23/2012

Although the harvests are getting better, I am still about 2 weeks behind last year with some of the crops. It's been a very strange year. Some crops were early and some crops seem to be taking forever. The tomatoes for instance have been loaded with fruit for some time now and I am only harvesting a few at a time. Now that we have been getting rain on a regular basis and the temps have dropped out of heat wave range, I'm sure they will start ripening much quicker.

Last Monday after I posted my Harvest Monday post, I pulled most of the spring carrots.

Monday's Carrot Harvest

Monday's Plot Harvest
We are loving these Red Seed Asparagus Beans!

Tuesday's Plot & Home Garden Harvest

Thursday's Plot & Home Garden Harvest

Friday's Home Garden Harvest

Saturday's Plot Harvest

Sunday's Plot Harvest

These are Purple Viking Potatoes
They are pretty cool looking aren't they? 

Look at this big Red Pontiac Potato
I went to the plots on Sunday to get some purple and red potatoes for roasted potatoes. We were having company for dinner and I thought it would look nice to have a variety of potatoes. I really wanted just a couple of smaller reds and I got this big MaMa and another one that was almost as big. I can't wait to dig those potatoes once the ground dries out a bit!

Sunday's Home Garden Harvest
We sure are enjoying the Sungold tomatoes. They are wonderful! 

Hop on over to Daphne's Dandelions, our host of Harvest Monday and see what's going on in gardens around the globe!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Starts are Finished

I guess that I really should have taken a closer look at my fall starts. I uncovered them today to find sticks. They were covered with little cabbage worms.

This is what is left of my Fall Broccoli & Cauliflower!

I do have about a dozen starts that Jose from the community garden gave me. That is not nearly enough though. I'm going to start some more starts today. This time I am going to cover them and keep them covered!! I'm not sure if it's too late. But, I'm going to give it a try. I can always purchase some too. The worst thing that can happen is I will have too many.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard..........7/19/2012

This past week a fellow gardener at the plots gave me a nice head of cabbage. Since we are out of Sauerkraut and I have yet to harvest any cabbage of my own, I decided to start a small batch.

I make my Sauerkraut the old fashioned way. It's really simple. You just slice the cabbage, sprinkle with salt, pack it down, then weight it down and cover it. After  few have Sauerkraut! I have posted about it in the past here and here. Note: Some people leave the sauerkraut in the crock or jar and don't process it.

Here's my first small batch of sauerkraut in the making.

We were also out of Paprika Powder. I harvested the first two small paprika peppers last week. So, I decided to dry them in the oven on low and grind them up. I usually hang them to dry and grind them when I have a lot of dried peppers.

A little bit of Paprika Powder.

I also sorted through the garlic from last year. This garlic will be dried and made in to garlic powder and/or minced garlic. 

You can read more about making your own Paprika Powder, Garlic Powder and Minced Garlic here and here.

What's been going in or out of you Kitchen Cupboard lately???

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Home Garden Mid-July

The Home Garden is starting to look much better the past couple of days since our nice rain on Sunday evening. It's still not up to par...but, all in all it is doing surprisingly well.

This is the Left Cold Frame Bed
It is filled mostly with dry beans now. There are a couple of Celery plants hiding in the back and some bare spots in the front. I'm going to sow some lettuce in the empty spaces soon.

This is the Right Cold Frame Bed
I pulled almost all of the Spring Carrots from this bed on Monday. There are still a few tiny ones left around the edges. There is also some huge Lacinto Kale in this bed still going strong.

This Kale was planted out last September!

This is Bed #1
There are a couple of cabbages left in this bed. I sure wish they would head up so I can harvest them. I sowed some Little Marvel Peas in this bed a couple of days ago. Hopefully, we will get a nice fall crop as I was not happy with my Spring Shelling Peas.

At the other end of Bed 1 there are a few Celery Plants, a couple of Dry beans and some newly planted Pepper Plants. "The Italian" brought me home 7 pepper plants last night. He got them for free and are varieties that he wants. I guess, it's better late then never for him to decide he wants a particular variety of anything besides tomatoes in the garden! Most of this bed will be sown with Spinach at the end of the season to overwinter. That's the only way I have been successful with spinach.

Bed #2 
There are 4 tomatoes planted in this bed.

3 known varieties and 1 unknown variety. There is a lot of that going on with my tomatoes this year! 

This is what is left of the carrots that were growing in between the tomatoes. Some bunny thought it was a Bunny Buffet!

The Sungold tomatoes are coming on like gangbusters! Boy, they are a wonderfully sweet tomato! Thanks Dave!

These are Paul Robeson tomatoes. Seed compliments of Jeff. These babies are huge and boy are they great tasting! Come on and get ripe already!

Bed #3
This is where most of the garlic was planted. Now there are dry beans and slicing cucumbers growing for "The Italian". 

These cucs are finally putting out a few a day. As you can see, the earlier leaves dried up and were spotted. The plants looks great now!

The Fall Broccoli, Cauliflower & Cabbage starts are undercover on the back porch. They are about 2-3 weeks old. Something was nibbling on them, so they were given a good dusting of DE and covered with a shade cloth. I hope this works.

My Dwarf Carmine Jewel Cherry Tree is growing very very well. Truthfully, I'm very surprised how much it has grown.

The Herb Garden is not looking great. It's usually overgrown and nice and green. The drought has been a bit tough on it.

The back part of the Herb Garden is very sparse too. The Spaghetti Squash are starting to take off and  

climb along the fence in both directions.

The Sage Bush is the only thing in the Herb Garden that is looking great.

We also have one some what pretty flower pot right now.
My flower pots are not nearly as nice as they have been in the past.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Harvest Monday.........07/16/2012

It's been a couple of weeks since I did a Harvest Monday post. The garden is starting to produce a variety of veggies right now. Just not enough of a variety and poundage to make me happy. I'm sure I'll be complaining in a couple of weeks about too much produce. Here is some of what I have been harvesting from the gardens the past couple of weeks.

The carrots are getting bigger.....

and bigger and stranger.....I think I'm going to pull the main crop of carrots today.

The first slicing cucumber has been harvested at the home garden.

The first Happy Yummy Sweet Pepper has been harvested.

As some of you know, I harvested about half of the Yukon Gold potatoes.

We've had a couple of zucchinis...and

yesterday I finally had a nice varied harvest!

Hop on over to Daphne's Dandelions, out host of Harvest Monday to see what's going on in Veggie Gardens around the Globe!