September 9, 2008: In the Garden

The veggie garden has slowed a bit, I seem to be down from 6 to 6-1/2 pounds of produce every other day, to around 4 pounds about twice a week. But oh, what lovely produce it is! The tomatoes went a couple of weeks looking rather sickly, with cracks in the tops, but the ones that are ripening now are beautiful. The two I picked today are quite small, but bigger ones are coming soon.

The beets were planted 7/18 and are pretty small, but I just couldn't wait any longer. This is the first time I've ever grown beets that the greens weren't ruined by leaf miners (always with my spring planting), so for the first time ever I'm going to cook the greens and see if we like them.

I have a red bell pepper! The first one to turn color for me this year (besides that one lonely yellow one). It should have stayed on the plant a bit longer, but there are some signs of slug damage and I don't want to lose it!

Mr. H is sick of green beans, so since the late planting of bush beans will probably be producing by next week, I took one last picking off of the spring planted ones and pulled the plants out to add to the compost. They have been producing over such a long period of time, almost as well as pole beans! He's also sick of the yellow squash, but I'm I guess you know what I'll be eating for a while!

The green onions are some I got from the produce department at the grocery store and planted in the garden so they wouldn't turn to slime in the refrigerator. Their story is here.

I just couldn't bear looking at those powdery mildewed squash leaves any longer, so look what I did to my poor zucchini!

Of course, this was my small plant, I'd never be able to get that drastic with the large one!

My neighbor, Pat, has rewarded me for giving her so much from my garden this year. One thing she has kept me well stocked in is her zucchini relish, which is absolutely delicious! I had some on a hot dog the other day, and it beats sweet pickle relish all to heck.

Pat's Zucchini Relish

2 cups chopped zucchini
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
2 Tbsp. salt
1-3/4 cup sugar
1 cup cider vinegar
2 tsp. celery seed
1 tsp. mustard seed

Combine zucchini, onion and the peppers. Sprinkle with salt and let stand 2 hours. Drain vegetables and press out liquid. Combine vinegar, sugar and spices, and bring to a boil. Add the vegetables and simmer 10 minutes. Ladle hot mixture into hot jars (1/2 pint size works well), leaving 1/8-inch of head space. Adjust caps and process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Recipe may be doubled.


  1. Oh, your green onions look beautiful! I am definitely going to have to try that.

  2. Your veggies look so yummy! I LOVE to eat beet greens. How are you planning on cooking them? I like to saute mine with some garlic and of course salt and pepper. Thank you for sharing the recipe. I will have to remember it for next year as my zucchini flopped this year. :(

  3. Well, I've been sitting here wondering how I was going to cook them (had planned on steaming just like spinach), now I know! Thank you, Cynthia, tomorrow I'll have sauteed beet greens! Tonight it's leftover pizza :-(


  4. Your produce looks so healthy! I am so envious!!! We filled in our 4x4 planter tonight with vermiculite, nature's helper and Black Kow so I can't wait to start planting my Fall garden. I am new at vegetable gardening so I hope my harvest looks half as good as yours. Any advice would be appreciated.

    I am also new to blogs but you have me hooked now --I am a little behind in the technology department! I have visited some of your favorite sites and there is so much great info. Thank you for sharing!

    Betty from Georgia

  5. Betty, you're going to get hooked! You'll have some failures along the way, we all do, but when it works it gives you such a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment! And everything you grow with your own hands will taste 100% better than anything you could buy!

    Good luck with the fall garden, I wish I were going to be here to see my garden through the fall. I'll be tearing mine out while you are enjoying yours!


  6. Hey Granny...remember that little experiment that I was gonna try with the organic potatoes? I was looking at everything today, and they have sprouted!!! I put an organic potato in the middle of each square (4), because John had great results with his method, and carolyn said organic potatoes would work. Granny - I don't know jack about taters...but, I know that you do. I can build a quick 1 or 2 level high-rise for the section in the next few days, tall do I let the green foliage get, before I cover most of it up? I'd like to do them like you were talking about in the vegetable forum. The sprouts are protruding about 2 inches from the soil right now....

  7. EG, can I assume you covered those organic potatoes with about 4-6 inches of soil when you set them in there? If so, let them grow to about 6", add a board and fill 'er up, just leave a couple of leaves sticking out. Then forget it. Stop. That's just my opinion, but I might be full of beans ;-)

    Really though, You might experiment with just ONE more board on some of them, just to see if there is a difference. No higher though, as it's only going to stress out that plant that's trying to have babies and it has to put all of its energy into growing taller...and taller...and taller!

    Did John say how deep he ended up burying his potatoes?


  8. Granny - I don't recall that John said how deep he planted his seed potatoes. I'll have to ask him. As far as my depth, the smaller box that they were planted in is only 5-1/2" deep - and the best I can figure, there was probably only 2" of soil covering the top of the potatoes. Do you think I need to add some soil to them now? Also, i'll add one board to 3 squares, and 2 to one. That way, we'll find out about the high rise problems. It's all an experiment anyway.

  9. EG, I've always heard 4-6 inches was optimum depth, and anything over 9" decreases the yield. So, if it were me, I think I'd tuck a bit more soil around them until they are about 6" under. Just leave a leaf or two showing, although I don't know if that is even necessary. I'm sure when farmers hill theirs by machine they don't check to make sure each one has a leaf or two sticking out!


  10. Ok granny...i'll do that tomorrow. Thanks

  11. Good luck!

    And EG, quit being so nice, or I won't be able to call you a little whippersnapper or a poopy head any more!