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Archive for the ‘Summer’ Category

Ruby Red Harvest

IMG_2187It’s harvest time at the Mishek Garden and I’m behind on my posts. This is a time of change here, with my son wrapping up high school memories and now packing to go off to college. Today is also his golden birthday, and I filled with awe and delight at the man he is becoming. To say I’m proud doesn’t give words to how I truly feel. Let it be enough that I trust he will be a good steward of my generation’s future.

I said its harvest time here – and it’s true. I was fortunate to visit my in-laws recently, and comment on their crabapple tree bounty. Come to find out they don’t harvest them, and I eagerly asked if I could in exchange for jars. They agreed, thank goodness!

It was rainy, humid day when Greg and I went to the farm to pick the harvest, a fast truck drive on the highway, a sticky wind in our hair. When we turned onto their road, the road-side black-eyed susans winked at us. Two blankets were already draped under the trees,  healthy crabs loaded with apples. Greg’s brother Andy had already shaken the first tree of gems; and we all worked on the second. Like bullets, they rocketed down on us, hitting head, backs, falling into the arms of waiting blankets.

Loaded the bounty up into the truck (50 pounds!), sweet smelling of apple harvest. And had a jaw around the bed, about harvests past, cherry harvests missed, kids, weather, solar energy and saving money.

Then back to the road and home. It took me a couple of days to get organized around making jelly. I wanted to try some new recipes – with pectin, without pectin, crabapple butter and such. My first batch hit the towels yesterday, four pounds down, 46 pounds to go. I used the Ball (canning jar folks) recipes – highly recommend the book. Here’s a link to their site.

More harvesting to go. More freezing and canning adventures to come.

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Deer in the Garden

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Ugly, Heirloom Tomatoes

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Harvesting Scallions

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Summer Color

Varigated petuniasMid-July means replacing those spring annuals with fresh, healthy summer favorites. I’ve been growing nasturtiums, miniature zinnias and marigolds (some old standards and some new) for my front door pots. I’ve mixed it up this year with heirloom tomatoes (“Brandywine”) and herbs, including Italian parsley and cilantro. Because this a super-hot location, I also added petunias – “Wave” in purple and hot pink, and a variegated leaf with light pink flowers. Really pops in during the heat of the day.

Harvesting: peas, haricot verts, beans, raspberries, currants, green onions, carrots (a little early, but I like using the thinnings for salads) and herbs. I also pulled a couple of fingerling potatoes – mostly to see how they are doing. Yum! Steamed with a little bit of butter and salt – it was a perfect complement to grilled garlic chicken breasts

And finally, the rain has arrived! Now get out there and weed!

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