Archive for Gardening

and the weekend started off so well…

It started off as a good weekend.  I swear it did.  I was up late Friday (technically, early Saturday) talking to a friend from high school, catching up on this and that.  Woke up late, played a bit with the dogs and went out to Celebrity Dairy‘s open house.  I got to pet the baby goats [note: need to add pictures here] and look around the inn.  When I left, I had 3 logs of goat cheese, a pint of blueberry preserves and a half pint of hot pepper jelly.

After leaving the dairy, I went to pick K up from the airport.  We got home, took the dogs out for a long while, then had a nice simple spaghetti dinner.  Sunday I (finally) put some seeds in the garden beds for spring veggies.  The usually: spinach, arugula, mesclun, peas, onions and swiss chard.  That’s when things started to go wrong.

I turned the sprinkler on the plants and things looked fine.  I went back into the house to clean up and noticed the water pressure dropping.  Yep.  It seemed like the water pump was off again.  The breaker this time.  I checked the easy places – no obvious signs of a short, so the problem is likely underground.  Hopefully the plumber can fix it this afternoon when he comes by.  He’ll probably have to replace the whole wire set… all 300′ of it.

So we didn’t get to clean up dinner dishes.  Getting the polenta off of the pot is not going to be fun.  Then I couldn’t sleep last night.  When I did fall asleep, I was troubled by some very disturbing dreams that, uncharacteristically, I remembered when I woke up.  Then to top it all off… no shower this morning.  *bleh*

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Canning

pickled-tomatoes and that’s the last of the summer veggies:  pickled green (and unripe red) tomatoes (mostly cherry), bannana peppers, a couple of small eggplant (can you pickle eggplant?) and an okra that I hadn’t noticed.  I’ll crack one of these open in a month or so and see how they taste.  FWIW, the pickled bannana peppers from September are great.

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cec’s day off

I thought about titling this “VD Day” for reasons explained below, but as K pointed out, my mom reads this blog.  More to the point, as I noted, my mom has a dirty mind – which is where most of her children got our sense of humor, so she would absolutely get it.  Anyway, I took today off work, because a) I recently had a birthday and wanted a three day weekend, and b) there were a number of little things around the house that needed doing.  In rough chronological order, I

  • finished up the door that I installed in August (September?).  There wasn’t much left, I just needed to bore out the hole for the doorbell without tearing up the doorbell wires, with a detour into making the stupid doorbell work again.  I got that finished and put up all of the old screen door (in case we reinstall it) then piled up all the old door frame, etc.  VD:  Victory over the Door!
  • built a new, larger, compost area.  We used to have a reasonable sized plastic compost bin, but that has proved difficult to use (hard to turn the pile) and too small.  The new one is much simpler, just a couple of stakes holding some 4 foot tall hardware cloth in place, but it’s much larger and should be easier to access.
  • cleaned out the garden for the end of summer.  Yeah, yeah, it’s the middle of the fall, but the plants were still producing.  It was good that I had put the compost area together, because I definitely needed the space.  I felt a little bad about pulling up the peppers and tomatoes which still had flowers on them, but since we don’t have the sun or the warm days left to ripen anything, it was probably for the best.  The amazing thing was how much produce was still out there:  a couple of small eggplants, some peppers, okra, a number of green onions, and a ton of tomatoes.


  • started preserving what came out of the garden.  Some of it went into tonight’s dinner:  Orzo with Veggies.  There were enough ripe tomatoes left to turn into roasted tomato sauce (roast tomatoes, garlic, italian seasoning, balsamic vinegar and olive oil for an hour, then puree and can).  I need to get some quart-sized jars tomorrow so that I can pickle all of the green tomatoes… unless someone someone has another good use for 2+ kg of green tomatoes.

Update: I shouldn’t forget, I also

  • cleaned, chopped and froze all of the green onions; and
  • updated the “title font” on my blog from “renaisannce” to “english,”  as well as updated TWRC‘s events



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Now I am feeling inadequate

I went out to the garden on Sunday and took a look at how the okra was doing.  Now I’m feeling somewhat, um, inadequate…

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as a gardener.

Really, who lets okra get that big.  I should have been picking them every two or three days so that the maximum size was only 3-5 inches, not 8-12.

In other gardening news, I opened one jar of the pickled peppers early (they should still be pickling for another 3-4 weeks), and they are delicious.

Oh, and I am *so* jealous of these people.   They also seem to have a great stuffed pepper recipe that I would bet even K would eat if I fixed them with sweet banana peppers (as opposed to jalapeños).

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