Saturday, July 03, 2010

Still Learning

Despite all the years I've been vegetable gardening I am still learning. The most recent discovery is that in a pretty much ideal growing environment peppers will grow so tall and set so much fruit high on the plant that just the small addition of damp leaves from a light rain will topple them flat even though they are reinforced with small bamboo sticks. Going to require cages of some sorts like tomatoes as staking is too labor intensive. I had three pepper plants lodged this morning from the light rain yesterday and the week before pretty much the whole row of Carmen (a long sweet red pepper) flopped over in spite of their bamboo supports. Everybody is standing back up but it is rather Rube Goldbergish and not the way I like the garden to look.

More canning yesterday with pickled okra, and jalapeno slices. In order to keep the jalapenos from lodging I had picked all the full size peppers and wound up with almost 5 pounds...way to much to eat fresh so sliced and pickled was the call. I added fresh garlic and oregano to these so we'll see how they come out.

It is that time of year when the garden has produced its first harvest and is taking a deep breath for the next push. If I had planted corn it would be ready for the 4th weekend but the beets are ready and need to be put in jars. All the new cucumbers and pumpkins are up and butter beans are a couple of weeks from harvest. All the green beans are finished and in the freezer. Winter squash are just about ready to start harvesting and it is time to get the garden ready for the fall crops.

Everybody have a great holiday weekend and don't forget to put out the flag. Oh, in case you don't remember I like chili, onions and coleslaw on my tube steaks and I'll bring the beer.

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