Tag Archives: yellow squash

Harvest Monday

August 3, 2015

I spent the week harvesting onionsNieto Photography 2015tomatoes (We’re freezing about 3 gallons/week.)

Nieto Photography 2015

Nieto Photography 2015

beans (and cucumbers)Nieto Photography 2015Nieto Photography 2015 a few raspberries and strawberriesNieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015 a few cantaloupeNieto Photography 2015 Nieto Photography 2015summer and winter squash (I have more plants growing that will hopefully yield more later but the plants that produced these were done.)Nieto Photography 2015 and potatoes.Nieto Photography 2015I spent a couple of days harvesting potatoes. I let them dry on the mulch for a day, inside for two days, and then wrapped them in newspaper and put them in the cool basement in a milk crate.

Last year, I alternated a layer of potatoes and newspaper. However, last fall, I wrapped my sweet potatoes in newspaper (individually) and they kept for over 6 months. I thought I would try it for garden potatoes.

One thing I found interesting: When I harvested the potatoes, they were smooth and beautiful. I laid them out to cure for three days. As I wrapped them up, certain varieties were wrinkly. They looked like potatoes look after a few months in the basement. There is no way we could eat all of them now so I still wrapped them and put them in the basement anyway but I am curious to see what will happen. Part of me wonders if it is just various types don’t cure/store well because the Yukon Gold were not wrinkly after curing.

I need to figure out what varieties I want to order for next year. The Yukon Gold did not wrinkle when they cured but they also rotted in the ground more than I would like. The Red Adirondack (an impulse buy) produced wonderfully; however, they were the ones that wrinkled when curing. I will just have to make sure we eat those fresh and store another variety. Red Norlunds, which are very popular in my area, rotted worse than any other variety. Part of me wonders if it was just where they were planted (a new section, with not as much sun)…I may give them another year but I haven’t decided yet. I need to find a few good storage potatotes. Anyone in a fairly rainy zone 7b have suggestions?

Another interesting potato observance is that although the vast majority of the plants died completely back, there is a section that is still going strong. I wonder if this is the unknown storage potatoes I bought at the feed store. I can’t remember exactly where I planted certain varieties. We’ll see when they do die back. Nieto Photography 2015(all of the mulch in the pic above was potato plants) Nieto Photography 2015This week, we went ahead and stripped the corn stalks (with no edible corn) this week. The beans that were climbing up the corn stalks were picked and are drying in the kitchen. The beans that were not climbing were left to (hopefully) dry, even though they are not climbing up anything anymore.Nieto Photography 2015(beans left in a canopy of sunflowers) Nieto Photography 2015What are you harvesting? Check out what other gardeners are up to at Daphne’s Dandelions today!

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Harvest Monday

July 21, 2014

Sorry for the silence. I’ve been having blogging issues. They’re not fully fixed but hopefully they will be soon ๐Ÿ™‚

We are getting more variety these days!

The blueberries have finally slowed down. Instead of getting 8 quarts of blueberries/day, last week we got 13 quarts for the whole week and this week only 8. Still plenty to feed us (along with strawberries) but none to freeze.DSC_4752 Nieto Family - July 09 14 - 0001 DSC_4740

Next week, I think we’ll be able to harvest our first watermelon! ๐Ÿ™‚ We have raspberry canes also but no berries. I wonder why. We’ve never had much luck with raspberries. Hopefully one year they will take off. I worry it is the climate. Is zone 7b too hot for raspberries? I realize we will have to buy fruit in the winter months but I would love to not buy fruit from the store during the summer months!

As you can see, we are getting zucchinis! We were able to harvest our first zucchini two weeks ago. It was very exciting since last year, I did not have any and already this year, squash bugs have killed two zucchini plants. Now, we are getting about 2/day and I am running out of ways to eat them ๐Ÿ™‚DSC_4735 DSC_4755 Nieto Family - July 07 14 - 0011 Nieto Family - July 07 14 - 0015

We are getting about two cucumbers and a handful of tomatoes daily. I planted a lot of colored bell peppers so though there are a lot on the plants, I am still waiting for them to ripen fully. We have harvested a few green ones while we wait on the rest. I am just finishing up the gallon freezer bag full of diced peppers from last summer. It worked out perfectly. Only problem — I can’t remember if I had two bags of peppers or only one…

We officially are not harvesting lettuce anymore. It all had to be ripped up. WAY too bitter from all the mid-90 degree days. I have some baby red romaine growing so we’ll see in a week or two how that tastes but until then, no lettuce. We can still (theoretically) have salads…with kale. There are only two problems:

  1. With lettuce, we just have lettuce, no dressing. With kale, I have to marinate (more fore-thought)
  2. The cabbage moths are out like CRAZY. My kale that looked so beautiful this past month are holey now ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I have to throw half of it to the chickens. So sad.

Nieto Family - July 07 14 - 0005 DSC_4739We are able to harvest beans once a week. I need to remember to plant beans in a row from now on. When they are in a block, they are much more difficult to harvest. I am also thinking about growing the purple variety just so I can harvest more easily (more easily visible)!Nieto Family - July 07 14 - 0007Another thought on beans…I grew pole beans around my corn mainly for the purpose of annoying the raccoons. However, I am unable to harvest the vast majority and that is just a waste. So, I was thinking, maybe next year, I can plant my pinto & black beans around my corn…

  1. It will climb the corn, taking care of the raccoon issue.
  2. AND I won’t need to harvest them until I harvest the corn so I won’t be missing out on my bean harvest!

Sounds too simple…there must be an issue…but I can’t think of one yet. We’ll see how it works next year, if I can remember ๐Ÿ˜‰

The last thing on the harvest tally this week is potatoes. I was just picking potatoes as we needed them but the red potatoes started looking…not smooth? I read somewhere that red potatoes are best eaten ‘new’ and if they are in the ground too long, they will become hollow. So I went ahead and pulled all of the red potatoes. I did it at dusk and when I was planting some kale seeds this week (very shallowly), I raked a potato up. I’m sure I missed some. I just hope it was not too many._DSC6675 The potatoes are in the basement, in a plastic milk crate, stacked and covered with newspaper. We are using these first. The other two types of potatoes we have are yukon gold and purple. What I want to do is leave them in the ground (until first frost) and use them as needed, rather than having to pull them all at once. Is that something I can do? Or do I need to pull them all as soon as the plants die back? I need some gardening advice (per usual)!

We also pulled our first corn but I can’t seem to find any pictures right now…

I’m trying to find a way to eat all of these veggies. I am fine with monotony — same veggies, cooked the same way, every night — but I’m afraid after a little while, my kids will say ENOUGH. So I am trying to find a variety of ways to cook them, healthily.

One night, we had steamed corn, potatoes, and green beans and zucchini tater tots. Another night we had the same thing, but this time with zucchini fritters (we like the tots better). DSC_4749Later in the week, we had pasta primavera, zucchini quiche, and steamed corn on the cob. It was SO beautiful! We used our zucchini, bell peppers, yellow squash, onions, carrots, cherry tomatoes, and eggs. It was a bit time consuming & I do have a 2mo who likes to be held A LOT. But I decided next time, if I have someone home to hold the cutie patootey, I’m also going to make kale salad and mashed potatoes. Other than cucumbers, that will take care ofย  ALL we have been harvesting from the garden ๐Ÿ™‚ And fruit for dessert, of course…maybe some banana, blueberry, strawberry ‘ice cream’. Our favorite!

The sad news: no pictures. The camera wasn’t working and my husband was away with all of his cameras (wedding photographer). I WILL be making that supper many more times though so pictures will come eventually. Everyone but the 2yo loved it. He was just skeptical because he couldn’t tell what everything was. He loves cherry tomatoes but because I cut them up, it took a lot of convincing to get him to try them. Silly boy.

Can you tell I’m trying to be especially creative with zucchini? I have never had luck growing zucchini but this year, I have three plants that are producing wonderfully! They are in the old pea patch. Everything seems to do well in that area. It was prepped by the chickens last summer. I used 3 zucchini in our supper last night and we still have 7 on the counter! I know I could freeze it but I would rather use it fresh ๐Ÿ™‚

The mama hen, with the 4 week old chick, has started laying again! Crazy. And I think our other chick (of the rooster/hen pair) may be laying…I don’t know how to tell without looking at her bottom though & that ain’t happenin’. Her comb is getting red though. She (and the rooster/her brother) are my daughter’s and she wants to get paid for the eggs so we do need to know when she starts laying…question is: is is worth it to isolate her to see?

Head on over to Daphne’s Dandelions to see what other gardeners around the world are harvesting! ๐Ÿ™‚

Garden in July

July 9, 2014

There is SOOOOOO much going on in the garden these days!

_DSF9171-Edit(Garden at the beginning of June)DSC_4679-Edit(Garden at the beginning of July)

Hard to tell much from afar, except that there is a lot more green going on ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ll start from closest and work my way back…

POTATO PATCH

The potato plants are starting to die back. The purple potatoes were planted later so they are still green. We are harvesting whenever we need them instead of all at once.

TOMATO PATCH

Tomatoes are getting bigger and bigger. I can’t wait until they start ripening!_DSC6101 DSC_4669We have a ton of baby bell peppers — just waiting for them to grow and turn pretty yellows and reds!_DSC6110 DSC_4670The watermelon plant has sprawled as of late.

_DSC6105 DSC_4668I found a baby watermelon the other day!_DSC6103(look really closely — towards the top)

And we have baby yellow squash ๐Ÿ™‚ No zucchini yet…

_DSC6099CORN PATCH

The pole beans continue to climb the corn stalks._DSC3277Most of the squash plants I planted in the corn patch have succumbed to squash bugs.DSC_4671(another one bites the dust ๐Ÿ˜ฆ )

One has rebounded, however — butternut squash! ๐Ÿ™‚

_DSC6120As for the corn, it has GROWN (my mom is 5’10”) and put out tassels…DSC_4678Corn is in our near(ish) future!DSC_4676Moving along to the original SWEET POTATO PATCH (there are 2.5 more now because of all the slips produced)…_DSC6114It is starting to fill out. The sections next to the beans are bare — the beans seem to be hogging all of the moisture. The other patches are doing GREAT! One is in a raised bed and the other is where the peas were ripped out. Alas, no pictures…

Next up, SUNFLOWERS! _DSC6123DSC_4677(taller than the corn!) _DSC6127 _DSC6148 _DSC6153 Nieto Family - July 01 14 - 0240The blueberries are doing well…still getting 8 quarts/day. While picking, however, we have seen some bugs trying to defoliate the bushes completely. _DSC6140We have found them on a handful of bushes. We just pluck the leaf off or cut the branch. They are yummy treats for the chickens ๐Ÿ™‚ A couple of bushes were almost completely decimated but hopefully they’ll make a comeback.

Moving along to the OVERFLOW GARDEN:

The spaghetti squash is producing like gangbusters!DSC_4674(the one in the forefront is turning color but there are more in the back — they’re everywhere!)

My daughter’s marigolds are starting to bloom.Nieto Family - July 01 14 - 0237I am collecting seeds from my lunar carrots…DSC_4673And spinach seeds for fall planting. DSC_4675That’s what’s going on in the garden at the beginning of July!

Here is a pic of the first chicks hatched on our homestead (not ordered). They are in the tunnel. One is a hen and one a rooster. The rooster (Whitey) crowed for the first time yesterday! They are inseparable.

We have just started letting the newest chick and mama hen free range (supervised) in the evenings. The mama seems to be a good mama – very protective of the chick, as you can see…

Nieto Family - July 01 14 - 0294How is your garden coming along? Are you about ready for the harvesting flush that is about to happen?

I am linking up with Green Thumb Thursdays today. Check out what’s going on at others’ homesteads ๐Ÿ™‚