Oh blogging friends, I’ve missed you. I’ve been neglectful to my blog but am still here! September has been a very busy month with starting a new program in university among other things.
My garden has been quite pitiful this month I’m afraid. There were many tomatoes in the early month until late BLIGHT(I believe) hit and essentially killed all 7 plants. I was devastated. Here are some photos so you can see what it looked like. It sort of seems like the tomatoes are rotting from the inside out.
I did however get hundreds of tomatoes, I just felt awful for all the ones that never got to ripen. Food waste is my equivalent to nails on a chalkboard – I just can’t handle it. I ended up ripping out all 7 plants and attempting to save any green fruits. With the non blighted tomatoes I decided to use my dehydrator again and make sundried tomatoes. It was fun to experiment with the different varieties of tomatoes.
In other news, that garden skunk I mentioned turns out to be a family of very busy, very enthusiastic squirrels. I used to enjoy watching squirrels run around and frolic…now I want to spray them with my hose’s jet setting. I made some sort of homemade squirrel deterrent using vinegar chopped garlic and black pepper…it didn’t work unfortunately.
I have just planted some winter seeds including: spinach, carrots, beets and bokchoy. Here’s hoping squirrel doesn’t decide to dig them up and have a nibble.
Does ANYONE know how to avoid this horrible blight? Or is it just part of gardening? I should probably move on and get over it 🍅And has anyone had a squirrel digging up their garden? What has worked for you? I’m excited to hear some tips and certainly excited to hear all about your fall and winter gardens!!🌱🌱
I spoke to soon. In my last post I claimed I had mastered summer gardening…well my peas have turned white and the actual pods seems to be growing MOLD. Help!🚔🚑
What is going on?!! It’s been very humid over the last few days so I’m guessing it’s from that, perhaps they don’t like hot and humid weather. Has anyone seen this before? Any guesses?
On a happier note, today I ventured out to my garden store and picked up a few packets of seeds for when my tomatoes are gone and the weather becomes a little cooler. Check out what I’ve picked out!
Green Arrow Peas, Bloomsdale Savoy Spinach and Celebration Swiss Chard!
Have you grown any of these veggies in the winter months, how did they do? Still eager to hear advice and stories of winter gardening. Happy growing, friends!🌱🍄🌞
Mid July has turned out to be quite exciting in the garden. We’ve had some interesting developments including a skunk and a ton of small mushrooms that are sprouting up everywhere below the veggies. Have you had mushrooms grow in your soil? Any harm in leaving them there? I don’t dare eat them, so far I’ve just picked them and let them lay on top of the soil.
My carrots actually grew, unbelievable since I didn’t thin them like I was told and certainly didn’t have high hopes. Boy, do carrots take patience! I planted the seeds 80 days ago and finally THEY’RE HERE! Small…a little funny looking…but nevertheless. Carrots! I’ve only harvested half of them since I really want to eat a purple one on my birthday which is next Friday.
Next exiting news is that tomatoes have appeared on 6 out of 7 plants. My “money makers” are growing well, they should turn out to be the size of roma tomatoes. The “sweet million” is also doing well. All are green still but I’m sure thrilled to see them turn red soon. I may have made a fatal mistake with the 1 plant that’s not growing any fruit. I decided to pick off any suckers(they are supposed to suck energy from the plant) and I bloody took off HALF the plant by mistake. Soooo that was a learning moment; go easy when plucking…
The peas are still producing, although they seem to be slowing down 😦 The beet seedlings are doing well, they are a beautiful colour already. The bokchoy seeds I planted about 2 weeks ago seem a bit sad – likely due to the tomatoes that are stealing their sun.
How is your garden? Any recent harvests? Are your tomatoes still green? Any evil skunks or interesting finds in your garden? I’m really looking forward to hearing all about your experiences. And anyone with mushrooms…let’s chat! Happy growing, blog friends 🙂
Ahh more harvesting! While I was away for a few days my bokchoy, aka pac choi, BOLTED. As you can see in the pictures the stems did not bulk up as I thought they would, instead the stems grew in height and grew pretty yellow flowers. I attribute the bolting to the weather. It was very warm, then very cold.
The yellow flowers are delicious though! And the leaves are fantastic and taste incredibly like store bought bokchoy (but 100 times better).
How are your gardens coming along? Has anything bolted? Failures? What have you harvested?
It’s time for a garden update! I was away for the weekend and came home to quite the treat…radishes!!! These radishes are the first harvest of the year, besides the onion some creature dug up.
I’ve also taken photos of my other veggies to show you all how they’re coming along.
First, the tomatoes are about the same size, likely due to lack of heat…boo, hopefully they pick up soon. Come to us, sunshine! 🍅🍅
Below you can see our onions are very floppy…the green stems resemble fainting goats. Does anyone know if this is a normal thing for growing onions to do?
The bokchoy is tall, but thin. I assume the stems are on the cusp of bulking up. Here’s hoping! Unfortunately as you can see something is eating the bokchoy leaves (damn you creatures, damn you!). There’s many wood bugs roaming around…perhaps they are the culprits?
Carrots, oh yes carrots! They’re doing well, looking more like carrots everyday. They are about 4 inches tall. All I want is one purple carrot ☺
Not pictured are my beautiful and lively pea plants which are about 5 feet tall.
How is your garden coming along? Have you harvested anything in the last week? I am so excited to hear about your garden adventures and maybe learn something from you as well! I can’t explain the feeling of excitement when these radishes came out of the ground; so rewarding! 🌱🌱
Sundried tomatoes are one of my all time favorite foods. I’ve put them in all sorts of dishes and I will often be caught eating them strait from the jar. But they’re so expensive…even at costco a jar costs upwards of $9.
Anyway as a few of you know I’ve been searching for a new hobby. I knew I love food and cooking and the other day I had some salmon jerky…and ka-ching! I want to try making dehydrated foods.
I opted to buy a new machine since I got paid and it’s 2016 so why not treat myself right? I spent $64 at Canadian Tire for a Salton Food Dehydrator.
Firstly I knew I wanted to experiment since this is a new hobby and I want to have fun. Therefore I tried the tomatoes three different ways: 1) I cut them lengthwise in half 2) I cut them in half, not lengthwise and 3) I quartered them. With this I’ve created my own (very basic) recipe. Here it is:
Tomatoes: I used cherry tomatoes because I love them Optional: salt, pepper, basil, olive oil
Cut tomatoes, put in a bowl, toss in a small amount of olive oil, a pinch or two of salt, pepper, basil as desired. Next lay them in your dehydrator with the skin of the tomato down so the wet seedy part is facing upwards.
Very simple, I know.
They turned out wonderfully. However I did learn that the best cut of tomato is horizontally…quarters were much too small. Good luck!
Have you ever dehydrated food? Looking forward to hearing from you all.