Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Gardening News

As we speak several jars of pureed tomatoes are boiling away in a pan on the stove. At long last tomatoes are ripening at a fast clip! Last week I canned whole Roma tomatoes. This week I did pureed tomatoes and I'm trying to sun dry tomatoes outside -- the old fashioned way. We will see.
Isn't it funny how everything seems to ripen all at once? This is partly to do with the fact that some of the quick and easy plants to grow I struggled with this year. Like beans, squash and cucumbers. Good grief. Of course the peppers, broccoli and tomatoes that I started from seeds did beautifully. Go figure. Anyway, it wasn't until two weeks ago that I picked my first cucumber! I had to replant them once and the green beans two times. Finally they are churning away and I have to harvest beans every few days.
I have also done some plantings for cold friendly veggies such as certain lettuces, beans, peas, carrots and broccoli. My leeks are still churning away and should be ready next month. The cool thing about leeks is that you can "winter-over" them. Mulch them in straw and pull them out with a pitch fork when you are ready for one. I've also ordered garlic -- which you plant in late September (that's when the come from the seed company) and harvest in the early summer. I like the idea because not only do we use a ton of it, but I'm able to utilize garden space in the winter -- harvest it in the early summer, then plant another crop in the empty space. Cool! So, I thought it might be worth giving a try.
Although our little blueberry bushes have been quite productive considering it's their first year, and my strawberry plants have recovered from the attack of Bambi and produced a bunch of daughter plants for next year ... I have had to "pick your own" strawberries and blueberries this year at local farms. I picked large quantities of both and made strawberry jam (two varieties) and blueberry jam. I'll post the recipes I used later.
OK -- time to go and tend to my boys and some errands. Keep well!

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