Today's harvest

Garden update – lots of preserving going on here

The produce is really rolling in now! I have been doing lots of preserving.  Here are some things I picked from the garden today.  Almost half a peck of ground cherries, tons of sweet peppers and oodles of tomatoes.  That stray okra pod was lying helpless on the ground.  I have 6 half pints of ground cherries in the freezer already and 6 pints of sweet pepper slices.

Today's harvest

Having two ginormous gardens, apparently, wasn’t enough though, so I went and bought a half bushel of peaches.  I canned 5 quarts of them in light syrup, made peach jam – 3 pints and 5 half pints – and froze some of the rest (what we didn’t snack on).  That same day I canned 6 pints of zucchini pickles and 5 pints of pickled peppers, banana rings and cherry hots.  I was beat at the end of that day, phew!

day's worth of canningBrainstorming is in the works for this guy.  I am thinking sliced, breaded and pan fried.

This eggplant is ready to eatAnd a vegetable oddity.  Every year it happens.  We always get some kind of mutated homegrown tasty.  They are tasty a plenty, every time, but a photo must be taken for documentation of the odd.  Here is this years best yet.  A double zucchini.

siamese squashDubbed the “Siamese squash” by a friend of mine.  I am off to preserve more of the garden’s bounty…on today’s to do list:

Pickled peppers – cherry hots

Candied jalapenos

Dried ground cherries

Frozen sweet and hot peppers

Veggie garden update

Boy was Memorial Day weekend busy and productive!  I have a huge veggie garden update.

It took a bit of work over each of the three days, but we tilled and planted the veggie garden.

tilling_lime_garden

Actually, it was a really slow process, but then our neighbor offered to run his tractor tiller through it, and it was done in half an hour.  Yay!  Thanks for good neighbors!

tilling-tractorWe got down the black plastic, cut holes and started planting seedlings of peppers, tomatoes, okra, basil, parsley, tomatillos and ground cherries.  I made sure to water them right away, they were thirsty.  The next day we finished the seedlings and added seeds for sow direct crops like cucumbers, zucchini, carrots, bunching onions and 7 rows of green beans.  Then I added some marigold and sunflower seeds around the edges to pretty things up.  I placed the sunflowers on the north side so that they don’t shade the garden and marigolds near the tomatoes for a companion planting and pest deterrent.  Then we watered everything in really well again.

vegetable garden planted

I got about two thirds of my flower beds mulched.  Here is a new gooseberry that I was able to transplant from that same helpful neighbors brush line.  It was ill fated otherwise and I was in the process of rooting some additional plants fro the three gooseberries that I already had.  These are larger than my rooted plants, so I will have better production a little sooner now.

DSCN1781

I transplanted all of this vinca to an enclosed bed in the front yard.  It hadn’t filled in the original space and was being choked out by mulch.  So I had to find a new home for it or buy more to fill in this area.  Transplanting the vinca to another bed was easier.

transplanting vincaIt will fill this small flower bed and won’t need to be mulched.  Ground cover and mulch don’t mix, people, they just don’t.

vinca transplants

It is all looking much better.  Well, it was, but then I had to disturb some of the mulch to transplant some spring bulbs.

not so freshly mulched

Check out these deck rail planters.  They are bursting with lettuce an greens.  I have been making a huge salad every night for dinner.  So yummy!

time for salad