Monthly Archives: July 2012

A Quick Overview – What It Looked Like In Early June

Time for a quick overview of one section of the garden. This is what the area outside the greenhouse looked like (the greenhouse has a solid glass door on it, so it has to be propped open all summer): Looking west from just outside the fence, visible is the squash row in the middle, the pepper row to the left and the tomato patch to the far right - before the tomato diseases set in: A close up of what was once a beautiful tomato patch (we allow castors to grow where they sprout, and only cut Read more [...]

The Cantaloupe Story – From Eager Beginnings to Sad Early Finish

After an impressive showing by volunteer cantaloupe (that were surely hybrid) last year, I bought 2 types of hybrid cantaloupe melons from Twilley Seed. Primo cantaloupe is a typical orange meat, beige netted skin melon.  It was supposed to be tolerant of powdery mildew - but that is not what I experienced this season.  The other melon I planted was Galia Passport.  These melons were supposed to look similar to cantaloupe and fully netted.  My experience, however, was that they grew mis-shapened Read more [...]

The Squash Row

This little beauty has plenty of blooms.  This is what a happy squash plant looks like. This year I inter-planted over 3 dozen basil seedlings in and throughout the garden. You can see a few of the first planted basil popping above the squash. Today, the last day of July, these large, beautiful squash are all gone and only the basil are left. They are now enormous - all at least 2 feet tall and bushy from having their seed heads pinched out regularly for a month. Read more [...]

Pepper Time

Sliced chunks of peppers on a drying tray, ready to go into the food dryer. More slices and chunks of peppers ready to be dried. These are some dried peppers. The volume of pepper is greatly reduced after drying. After drying, I put my food in canning jars. A pan full of stir-fried garden peppers (cubanelle, green bell, chocolate bell, banana), yum: Cubanelle peppers are simply beautiful, especially after they turn red. A bounty of bananna peppers on a plant: This was mostly just Read more [...]

Food Drying

While last season, I blanched and froze pounds and pounds of zucchini, this season I am drying some of the harvest. This is how zucchini is sliced and laid out on a drying shelf. I don't recall the exact measurements, but I think about 6 pounds of fresh zucchini dried to about 10 ounces. To make chips to nibble on, slice the zucchini to 1/8". For slices to use in soups, slice the zucchini to 1/4" thick.  Veggies are recommended to be dried at 125 degrees. These 2 jars are the result of 7 trays Read more [...]

A Few Harvest Pics From the Abundance of June

Beautiful garden peppers: A few 8 Ball zucchini, Obsisian zucchini, yellow crook neck squash and some peppers: A bucket full of peppers, squash and cucumbers, all in a day's pickings: Read more [...]

Cucumbers

I don't really care for the Marketmore type cucumber.  I prefer an English like cucumber.  I selected Tasty Green hybrid from Twilley seeds to grow this season. These cukes are best picked when 12 or 14" long.  Twelve inches is better because the seeds aren't developed yet. New cucumbers are so pretty, beforel the diseases arrive. The disease process is starting. See the leaf splotch on the lower leaves. Another picture of cucumbers growing on a cattle panel.  A rather delicate plant. Read more [...]

Growing Your Own Sweet Potato Slips

I grow my own sweet potato slips.  I started these over a month ago - it is too late now, mid July, to plant sweet potato slips and expect them to grow to maturity. I buy a sweet potato from the store, stand it on its end in an inch of water and wait for the sprouts to pop out.  When a sprout is at least 6 inches long, I cut it off at the base where it grows from the potato.  Put this sprout in water and it will form roots.  After the roots form and are at least an inch long, plant them in the Read more [...]

Keep Pinching Basil Seed Heads

Keep pinching the seed heads as they appear on basil and the plant will continue to grow and bush out. If you just let the plant go to seed, it will not grow very tall or bushy. And again: I pinch basil seed heads whenever I see them as I walk thru the garden. It is easy at first, but after a while, the plant bushes out so much that you can't possibly pick all of the seed heads. Once the seeds start to develop, the quality of the plant and leaves goes down. I ended up growing what looks Read more [...]

Potatoes From the Dirt to the Serving Bowl

We have never had a really good potato harvest here.  I do believe that the same diseases that turn the tomato leaves yellow and kill the plants also affect the potatoes - since they are of the same plant family. I purchased a small bag of seed potato, it had about 8 golf ball sized seed potatoes.  Since the potatoes were so small, I didn't bother cutting the potatoes into smaller chunks.  I just planted the 8 or so seeds.  They grew beautifully for almost a month.  The greens were just beautiful Read more [...]