We participate in Sharon Astyk’s Independence Days Challenge. Even though she isn’t posting these updates in a while, I really like the format for a weekly review.
The weather this week was hot at times but overall quite nice. We had a bit of rain that was helpful for the garden. On Saturday there was a nice breeze as I worked in the beds and the sun was bright and beautiful.
After multiple thunderstorms with whipping wind and rain, there aren’t many plums on our tree left. They were dripping with plums earlier in the year, and I was so happy at the thought of possibly making plum jelly this year. It looks like that won’t be happening. Hubby asked if I thought that the squirrels or birds had robbed the tree. I think that they may have eaten some of them, but by the evidence on the ground beside the tree, I think that the weather was the main culprit.
Other areas of the garden are picking up and doing well. The bell peppers and squashes are starting to flower. The bachelor buttons and cosmos are blooming. The peas are fruiting in full force.
Plant—more Blue Lake pole beans, another round of Marketmore cucumbers, a few more Gooligan White Baby Pumpkins, more Sweet Beauty Watermelons and more Jenny Lind Melons
Planted to date--
Super Sugar Snap Peas, 7 tomatoes (brandywine, grape, Early Girl, Better Boy), Choko Baby bok choy, One Kilo Chinese cabbage, 4 eggplant, Blue Lake Pole Beans, Christmas Lima Beans, Kestral Baby Beets, Touchstone Gold Beets, Chioggia Beets, Bull’s Blood Beets, Waltham 29 Broccoli, Rouge d’Hiver Romaine Lettuce, Matina Sweet Butterhead Lettuce, Galia Melon, Gooligan White Baby Pumpkin, Gourmet Rainbow Radish Mix, Gigante Inverno Spinach, Cavili Zucchini Squash, Milano Black Zucchini Squash, Supersett Yellow Crookneck squash, Sweet Beauty Watermelon, Marketmore cucumber, Genovese Basil, dill, flat leaf parsley, Jenny Lind melons, Butternut Squash, Garlic (planted in the fall), yellow and red onions, 8 bell peppers, 6 jalapeno peppers, 4 cabbage plants, 4 broccoli plants, daylilies, surprise lilies, sedum, 4 o’clocks, hollyhocks, red cockscomb, moonflower, zinnias, sunflower mix, marigold, butterfly flower garden seed mix, thyme, chives, carrots, coriander, horseradish, garlic chives, Peace Vine tomato, another type of basil (friend gave it to me).
Harvest—We continue to harvest salad greens in full force. The spinach is bolting quickly, but there is still quite a bit that we can harvest. Almost every plant of bok choy bolted while we were away. I think that getting the baby bok choy was part of the problem, and I should have planted succession crops of it. Oh well, I’ll know for next year. I did harvest some of it that went into a stir fry. We pulled 3 big Chinese cabbages from the garden along with hundreds of sugar snap peas and a bit of kale. I picked the first two jalapenos. The radishes are bolting, and I would suspect that after another week or so, they will be finished. While there are some beets ready to pick, I’m waiting for them to get a little bigger before I start picking them. We have so few of them this year that I want to get the most that I can out of each plant. I pulled the last of the garlic scapes and added them to the stir fry. I started to harvest the carrots, and while they are still small, they are sweet and delicious. We continue to pick flower arrangements, spring onions, herbs and edible flowers.
Preserve—I blanched about 4 cups of sugar snap peas and popped them into the freezer.
Waste Not/Reduce Waste— Returning home from vacation made this category a little more difficult. We became so accustomed to being in colder air conditioned rooms that I’m finding a strong desire to turn the temp cooler at home.
Hubby has been experimenting with making furniture from our bamboo. He was inspired by the Swiss Family Robinson tree house at the Magic Kingdom, and I can only imagine what he’ll create for our daughter’s playhouse now!
Want Not/Prep/Storage—Maybe it is just the mood that I’ve been in this week, but I am really wanting to get to serious work on some projects around the house. I want to do this and I want to do that and then I want to do this other thing… Sometimes these moods are the motivation that I need to get to work, and I’m hoping that is the case. The only problem is that there aren’t enough hours in the day nor enough energy in my body to do all that I want to do.
Building Community Food Systems—A friend passed on some more delicious home-grown eggs to us this week. What a delight to open that carton and see an Easter egg colored display from Mother Nature! I plan to bring her and her mom some salad greens this week. This time of the year I buy more of our food locally than from the grocery store. For that reason, you probably won’t hear as much about my shopping trips and percentages saved at Kroger.
Eat the Food—The first stir fry of this season was quite good (if I do say so myself!) Our daughter has enjoyed going down to the pea patch each day and picking her snacks. Some of the peas were larger and could be shelled, which is the kitchen prep job that she likes the most. She would tell them, “Get out of there you little pea. You are going to pea-school!”