July 1, 2013 - Harvest Monday

The garden has fed us very well this week.  Hopefully it will survive this heat wave we're having and continue to produce well.  It did hit 100F this afternoon, but 110 is now predicted for tomorrow.  Most of the plants were drooping badly this afternoon, but once the sun began to set, they perked back up.  I didn't spend much time in the garden, but I did start pruning out the raspberry canes, cut back the Johnny Jump Ups that were looking rather scraggly, and tied up my poor, pretty cosmos that blew down in the hot wind today.  I fear they will also have to be cut back, as they aren't looking so pretty now.  We just can't seem to get a break from the wind this year.

 6/24 - The first zucchini (but certainly not the last)!  This one was sliced, dipped in egg and saltine cracker crumbs, fried in butter and fed to Mr. Granny.

 6/25 - Raspberries, strawberries, Yukon Gold potatoes, cabbage and a few bites of broccoli.  Of course, I ate the broccoli, which made Mr. Granny happy.

 6/26 - Red Norland potatoes and more raspberries.

 6/27 - A big bowl of Red Sails lettuce, rhubarb that went directly into a pie, strawberries that were frozen for smoothies, Yukon Gold potatoes, beets and 3 more zucchini. With more zucchini than I really could use, I did a little experiment.  I made coleslaw with my garden cabbage, and I grated one of the small zucchini into it.  It was delicious!  I think it made the slaw just a bit milder, without really changing the flavor.  I'll be using it that way again, for sure.

 6/27 - More raspberries, a few Sungold tomatoes (there were more that didn't make it in the house) and the fresh rhubarb pie.  We ate that entire pie in three days  :-(

6/27 - Onions and garlic were weighed today.

 6/28 - YAY! Finally enough carrots for a meal!  Nearly two pounds of green beans, and more raspberries and strawberries.

 6/28 - A nice sweet pepper, the first yellow crookneck squash and another bite or two of broccoli.

 6/29 - Red Norland potatoes, yellow crookneck squash and zucchini.

 6/29 - The 3-headed cabbage turned out to be a 4-headed cabbage!  These were all on one plant.  The second picking of bush beans, which were made into a 3-bean salad, and more strawberries and  raspberries.

 6/30 - The first three Spacemaster cucumbers.  Mr. Granny likes them soaked in vinegar and sugar, with a bit of crushed ice to make them cold and crisp.  I don't like cucumbers, so I'll make some into refrigerator pickles for me.

6/30 - The summer squash glut begins.  I'll take these over to my son tomorrow.  The raspberries are just about finished now, and the strawberries are slowing down but the plants are loaded with green fruit and blossoms.  I think this will end up being my best year ever for strawberries, and the raspberry harvest has been my second best, losing out to 2011 by about five pounds.

This Week's Harvest

Beans (bush): 35.7 ounces
Beets: 6.8 ounces
Broccoli: 2.3 ounces
Cabbage: 51.3 ounces (3.2 pounds)
Carrots: 8.6 ounces
Cucumbers: 19.4 ounces (1.2 pound)
Garlic: 17.4 ounces (1.08 pound)
Lettuce: 12.2 ounces
Onions: 178.8 ounces (11.17 pounds)
Peppers (sweet): 4.4 ounces
Potatoes: 105.2 ounces (6.57 pounds)
Raspberries: 49.9 ounces (3.11 pounds)
Rhubarb: 25.6 ounces (1.6 pound)
Squash (summer): 74.7 ounces (4.67 pounds)
Strawberries: 68.6 ounces (4.29 pounds)
Tomatoes: 1.8 ounces (several more eaten and not weighed)

Total for week: 662.7 ounces (41.4 pounds)
Total to date: 125 pounds

Be sure to check out Daphne's Dandelions to see what others have harvested this week!

June 28, 2013 - Something Hiding in My Garden!

I don't know how I missed them.  I glanced at them every day as I passed by.  It was only because I was looking for a zucchini that might be hiding under the huge plant leaves, that I happened to spot them nearby.  No, not bugs or critters.  Beans!  Nearly two pounds of them, and they were big and fat and at their prime.  If I had waited even a day or two longer, they'd have become too old and tough for my liking.  I really wasn't expecting them this early, what with the cool weather we've been having.  It seems like just last week they were only beginning to blossom!

Provider bush beans.  We'll be having them for dinner tonight, along with a crockpot meatloaf, freshly dug new potatoes with fresh snipped parsley or chives (probably chives mixed with light sour cream and butter), and....*tada*.....carrots!  I finally pulled enough nice carrots for a big meal of them!  I'll also make coleslaw from a young cabbage and some sweet onion from the garden.  Maybe I'll pick a sweet green pepper to go with it.   I baked a rhubarb pie yesterday, from fresh cut garden rhubarb.  I didn't even try to make it lighter and healthier, other than making an oil pastry instead of using Crisco.  Oh dear, a feast today means we might have to fast tomorrow!

June 27, 2013 - 100 Pounds of Garden Produce

I hit the 100 pounds of produce mark this week, which looks to be one of the better spring seasons so far.  I don't expect that to last though, as my onion and potato yields are running way behind, and I didn't plant pickling cucumbers or pumpkins, which added greatly to the total poundage in some previous years.

June 27, 2009 - 75.5pounds
June 27, 2010 - 103.9 pounds
June 27, 2011 - 73.8 pounds
June 27, 2012 - 100.5 pounds
June 27, 2013 - 110.4 pounds

The onion harvest, at just over 16 pounds so far, will end up way below last year's 59 pounds.  The garlic harvest was about equal to previous years.

We've had below normal temperatures the past 10 days or so, with rain nearly every day.  I noticed a couple of the larger sweet peppers had an off color, and when I touched one it turned to mush in my hand.  Both of the large peppers on the plant were completely rotten.  I hope it was from too much moisture, and not from some disease.  I won't have to worry about too much moisture or cool weather this week....

The tomatoes, peppers and beans should love that weather!

The early corn is tasseling.  It's a good thing it hasn't formed ears yet, because if it gets up to 113 this week, I'd have popped corn!

June 24, 2013 - How Amusing!

The temperature has dropped from 73F at noon, down to 64F.  It's cloudy, drizzly and dreary, and I'm bored.  However, it doesn't take a lot to amuse me these days.  I absolutely love this commercial:

LOL, it almost makes me want to switch to GEICO!

June 24, 2013 - Harvest Monday

 6/17 - Cabbages, which were made into sauerkraut.

 6/18 - Finally, enough carrots to cook for dinner!  I also harvested a few beets, radishes, lettuce and strawberries.  

 6/19 - Yukon Gold potatoes, raspberries and a few side shoots of broccoli.  It wasn't enough broccoli to cook for dinner, so I just heated it up in my bowl of vegetable soup and ate it for lunch.

 6/19 - The very first tomatoes!  Three little Sungolds that I shared with Mr. Granny.

 6/20 - I pulled a lot of the Walla Walla onions, as the tops had fallen.  The tops broke off of these, so they came inside rather than getting hung to dry.  More raspberries and strawberries.  I've had to pick them nearly every day this week.

 6/21 - More berries.

6/ 23 - Guess what....more berries!  I actually had to pick berries 6 days this week, but I didn't photograph them all.

This week's harvest:

Beets: 14.4 ounces
Beet greens: 21.8 ounces
Broccoli: .8 ounces
Cabbage: 63.6 ounces
Carrots: 8.6 ounces
Lettuce: 11 ounces
Onions: 5.4 ounces
Peas: 8.7 ounces
Potatoes: 56.2 ounces
Radishes: 4.8 ounces
Raspberries: 80.8 ounces
Strawberries: 50.5 ounces

Total this week:  326.6 ounces (20.4 pounds)
Total to date:  83.6 pounds

Be sure to check out Daphne's Dandelions to see what others have harvested this week!

June 20, 2013 - As the Garden Enters the Summer Season (part 2)

Are we tired of walking through the garden?  Well, we're not done yet!
If you missed it, Part 1 of the garden tour begins HERE.

A double row of bush beans.  I think these are Contender.  Or maybe Provider.  I always get those mixed up!  OK, I looked it up and these are the earlier planted ones, which were Provider.

 This is the carrot patch that germinated then disappeared, probably eaten by pill bugs.  Some of the seedlings survived, and where it looks bare there are actually new seedlings emerging from reseeding the bed.  Annie got into the garden last week, and walked right through this bed.  Carrots may not grow where doggy footprints go.

 These are the Contender bush beans.  They were planted a bit later, and came under leaf miner attack.  It looks like only the early leaves were damaged, the new leaves look fine.  I think the miners moved over to the beet greens along the fence.

 A later planted bed of carrots has almost caught up with the early ones.

 The corn is growing well, despite the cool weather.

 The sweet pepper plants are not growing very well, but they are loaded with blossoms and many have good sized peppers on them.  That's a pot of dill in the front.

Lots of blossoms on the peppers.

 Quite a few peppers, too.

 Nearly as large as my hand!

 Aren't they purty?

 Don't ask me why I planted a row of veggies along this fence line.  I thought maybe my neighbor would keep her weeds pulled after she spent so much time removing them this spring.  As you can see, it didn't happen.  If I hadn't planted here, I could at least go along the fence with the hoe.  As it is, I have to hand weed this area almost daily.  It didn't get done today  :-(  Anyway, if they can compete with the weeds, I have a few beets, parsnips and bush beans planted here.  

 I stuck some leftover cabbage plants here, along with marigolds, nasturtiums, potatoes in the black thing, and a Black Cherry tomato at the corner of the kennel.  It was supposed to be a Una Hartsock tomato, but I got the seeds mixed up.

 I pulled the pea vines off of the kennel this morning.  Youngest (4-year old) granddaughter is coming over Saturday, so I'll put her to work helping me plant pole beans in their place.  The kennel holds some broccoli, cabbages, lettuce, carrots and beets.  There are a few pole beans growing up the back of the kennel, but they pretty much got chewed to death by earwigs.

 Bush cucumber climbing up bamboo poles.

 Baby cucumbers and blossoms abound.

 The pot garden, with its pots of tomatoes, basil, rosemary, strawberries and lettuce seedlings.  Hot peppers grow in pots on the patio.

These are from a packet of Happy Yummy (hot) peppers.  Last year they turned out to be long, orange and very sweet (my favorites).

These are from the same packet of Happy Yummy (hot).  I don't know what I'll end up with, the peppers on the two plants look quite different, but I'm sure they'll be good anyway!

These are Jalapeno, also growing in pots on the patio.

 Sungold tomatoes are on each side of the patio entrance.  I picked my first tomatoes from them yesterday!  There were only three ripe ones, so Mr. Granny and I will have to share them tonight.

 Patio tomatoes in the pots, Fortex pole beans climbing up the bamboo poles and almost ready to grab on to the lattice.

 Celebrity tomatoes and rhubarb grow along the west fence.

 Celebrity tomatoes.

Here is the main garden in total (in the dark, dreary, rainy weather).  Look who is standing behind the white garden bench, waiting for me to bring him his daily cookie treat ;-)  For those new to my blog, that's the neighbor's dog.  I spoil him rotten.

June 20, 2013 - As the Garden Enters the Summer Season (part 1)

Tomorrow summer officially begins.  You couldn't tell from the weather we've been having!  It's been about 20 degrees below normal for the last ten days......cloudy, windy and rainy.

I spent most of today in the garden, trying to catch up a bit in between rain storms.  I transplanted, weeded, hoed, pulled out old plants, raked and did general garden cleanup.  Then I took pictures.  Lots of pictures!  So many pictures, I thought it would be best to put them in two posts.  So here we go, with the summer garden!

 The small garden behind the shed had garlic, the main lettuce bed and a container of potatoes.  All the remaining mature lettuces were pulled this week, so today it was filled with transplants.  These lettuce plants had been started in the main garden, but sparrows were keeping them badly nipped.  Back here they are protected by the netting covered structure, so hopefully they can recover and grow.  Tuesday the garlic was pulled (back where the straw is).  It was still small, but beginning to dry and flop over, so out it came.   In its place I planted three rows of carrots.

 The garlic, drying on a screen in the shed.  Not a great harvest, but considering they all came from a couple of grocery store bulbs that were rotting, not too bad.  These won't be weighed until they are completely dry.

 To the right of the shed garden, we head into the main garden.  Here I have flowers, a couple of leftover pepper plants, some tomatoes, parsley and dill.

 To my right I see the four Super Fantastic tomato plants, with a few carrots interplanted.

 Yes, I have tomatoes.  But will it ever warm up enough for them to ripen?

 This was the Walla Walla sweet onion bed, but most of them have now been pulled.  There are about a half dozen larger ones at the back of the bed, and a few salad onions in the front, but my onion harvest is only going to be a fraction of that of previous years.  It just hasn't been a very good year for my root crops.  I do have a few radishes left in this bed, and a nice row of Red Sails lettuce.  The sparrows don't bother the red lettuces like they do the green.  Today I planted a few beet seeds in the center of this bed.

 Walla Wallas hanging in the shed to dry.  I won't be giving any away this year!

The earlier blooming Sweet Williams were all cut back this morning.  I was going to scatter some Cosmos seeds here, but when I opened the packet there were only about six seeds left.  I tossed them into the loosened soil, if they grow they grow.  At least the tomato plant here has a bit more breathing room with the flowers cut down.

 A wheelbarrow stuffed full of Sweet Williams will be headed for the landfill.  My compost pile doesn't get hot enough to kill the seeds, and I don't want volunteers all over the garden next year!

 My "Toni Hollyhocks" are blooming.

 As is my very first coneflower!  These budded last year, but never did bloom.  I was planning on pulling them out this week, but they came through for me!  The plants are rather ugly (and huge), but the flower is so very pretty.

 Dark Red Norland potatoes.  

 On the left are the Yukon Gold (from my saved seed) and the not Yukon Gold potatoes that were mislabeled at the store.  Unfortunately, the ones from my saved seeds evidently have blight, which is spreading to the others.  I've been digging the ones from my seeds, but so far I've only found a couple of potatoes under the others.  It seems they are not only the wrong variety, but they are going to give me a very sparse, if any, harvest.  On the right are my only two mature broccoli plants (all the others were consumed by cutworms).  There are a few carrots in there somewhere, but not growing well.  More Red Sails lettuce that will be ready by the time the other ones are gone.    I have a bare spot at the front, where a cabbage was just removed.  I have no idea what will go there, maybe more beets.

 I've pulled the cabbages from this bed, they were used to make sauerkraut this week.  There is still an oddball in the bed, along with some young broccoli transplants.  I've cut off mature cabbages, leaving the roots in the ground, and had them grow multiple mini-heads.  But I've never before grown a cabbage from seed that developed three heads on one plant!    I put in a few cloves of garlic that had begun to sprout.  It should be fine to use as green garlic this summer/fall.

A three-headed cabbage!

 This is the first time I've ever grown leeks.  They seem to be doing OK.

The strawberries on the left are just beginning their second crop of the year, and they are beautiful berries.  They're way bigger than the early berries, and much easier to pick as they are up higher on the plants.  There are a couple more Celebrity tomatoes back against the fence (I have 8 of them in all), some yellow bush beans between the strawberry and raspberry beds, and cantaloupe in the pot in front.  Marigolds are just beginning to bloom.

 The cantaloupe plants have blossoms.

 Next to the raspberries, I have another Celebrity tomato, a row of mixed sweet peppers, a few more carrots, parsnips in various stages of growth, and parsley.

 I love the cosmos at the end of the raspberry bed.  I think I'll plant them all over my garden next year.

 Three hills of butternut squash are threatening to take over the garden.  I'm trying to aim them toward the fence, so they can climb.

 Zucchini in the back, yellow crookneck squash in front.

 We'll be eating crooknecks soon.

And zucchini, too!