Thursday, August 4, 2011

Around the Yard: Harvesting is in Full Swing

We went away for the long weekend and came back two days later with a garden over flowing with produce. We had tiny zucchinis when we left and came back to find they now reach from our wrists to our elbow. Tell me, how does that happen? We have buckets of shell peas, snow peas, snap peas, and beans. We have stopped trying to keep up with the lettuce. Our onions are popping out of the ground, as are our beets! Our broccoli plants are still producing and our winter squash and pumpkin vines are just plain getting out of hand! Our peppers are getting huge and I really do need to do something with all that basil! Goodness, it really comes in all at once, doesn't it?


Being overwhelmed with produce makes it easier to leave some aside for saving seed. We tried a new variety of snow pea this year called Snow Wind that is mildew resistant and it produced fantastically! We'll be saving that, along with shell peas, snap peas, beans, arugula, spinach, parsnip, and whatever else I have time for!

As for the blight-stricken tomatoes, I'm pleased to say they are doing great! A friend suggested we remove most of the tomato leaves to help ripen the remaining tomatoes. In hindsight, this is something I should have done right away, both to help get the air flowing around the tomatoes and to prevent any contaminated leaves from touching the fruit. We also made a homemade spray of fermented garlic and ginger, given their anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Last week I dared to hope that I'd be able to salvage what was left, but now I'm thinking that it will be possible! Since we've sprayed our solution, the tomatoes look fantastic and are ripening, the previously curled leaves have uncurled and are looking normal again, and there have been no more yellowing leaves since last Thursday. We plan to do another spray tonight, and then we'll repeat again if necessary.


Here is how our garden is growing this week (you can check out last week here):

Multi-colored beans.

The first of the garlic to be pulled. This is a hardneck variety suited for our northern weather, called Music. We get our bulbs for planting locally at the Garlic Garden.

Little fingers just itching to pull this yellow zucchini.

Cape gooseberries.

 Pickling cucumbers.

 Purple kohlrabi.

 Calendula.

 Scallop squash.

Zinnias.

 Basil: can you ever have too much?

25 comments:

Emily Sunwell said...

Everything looks BEAUTIFUL Shanon! So excited to hear about the Blight remedies too! That's great info to know, thanks for sharing. I can't wait to try planting pickling cucumbers one year, the ones in your pic look so good! Our garden - the heirloom watermelons took off! They are popping up like crazy w/ tons of bigger ones this week. The one that was the size of a baseball last week has now tripled in size! So exciting since watermelons were the only thing little one wanted to plant. Here's to happy plants :)

Shanon Hilton said...

Wow, that's very exciting about the watermelon. Mine are about the size of a quarter! I've started snapping off the ends of the vine now to encourage all of the energy into the fruit. It's gotta be tough love or I won't hope to see any of that delicious fruit at all! Cheers!

Allison at Novice Life said...

Nope - you can never have too much Basil! And I love the Calendula! I wish I would have planted some.

Barbie said...

Sweet! And, yes - it usualy comes in all at once. Requiring all your attention at the same time.

RandomGardener said...

Varied harvests! Very beautiful pics. Purple kohlrabi looks very yummy! Never grown them before, will try next year. You must be having a great time in the garden :)

Pam said...

Everything looks fantastic! Can you post your recipe/method for the garlic spray?

Shanon Hilton said...

Hi Pam, Yes, I do plan to post the recipe for the spray. I'm making another batch currently, so once it's done and I can take a picture of it, I'll be sharing it. Thanks for stopping by.

Shanon Hilton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paula said...

Everything looks awesome! How fun that you are able to harvest already. We had such a cool spring and didn't get planted until mid june so we are a bit behind. FUn to see your pictures - they make me anxious to get our harvest too! Thanks for sharing, Paula from Idaho

Barb said...

That's wonderful that you were able to rescue the tomato plants from the blight. Everything looks so beautiful in the pictures!

My favorite was the calendula. I'll have to remember to grow some next year. Other than its herbal properties, does calendula help with the beneficial insects?

Zoey said...

I have just one basil plant that is not doing very good. I wish mine looked like yours!

shabby girl said...

Holy Moly! I'm impressed! I'd like to be one of your neighbors!

J. Smith said...

Looks like youy need to set up a roadside veggie stand! I've never seen the colored beans before. Interesting! Jean

Andrea said...

Hi I am new here. Just by looking at your plants seem like you dont have any problem at all, everything seems to be healthy and happy. You mean you are just using garlic ang ginger spray for insects? amazing harvest!

Shanon Hilton said...

Hi Barb, Calendula does attract beneficial insects, but also some pests. It's good planted near tomatoes, just like marigolds. I plant it primarily for the blossoms. :)

Shanon Hilton said...

Hi Andrea, I have been using the fermented ginger-garlic spray on everything, including the tomatoes, for the blight that has been affecting them, as well as my squash. I haven't found it to repel any insects as of yet. I'd love to figure out an organic spray to deter cabbage moths from my brassicas though. My cabbages got demolished from their worms, despite the row covers and pantyhose covers!

Really Rainey said...

Your garden and produce look amazing... I live in Arizona and my garden is barely there... withering along with me in the heat. Your blog has given me inspiration to so a winter garden this year! Thank you!

Rainey @ The Project Table
http://theprojecttable.blogspot.com

Beeutiful by Design said...

Everything looks great! Time for a vegetable dinner!

Daphne said...

It all looks wonderful. I always freak out when I have to leave over the summer, but it really shows you how things grow.

Shanon Hilton said...

Hey Daphne, I know exactly what you mean. It's hard to leave your garden, even for a couple of days, isn't it?!

Rainey: Thank you for such a lovely comment. That's great news about the winter garden. I bet it will do wonderfully where you live. I hope you'll post pictures of it on your blog!

I'm Just a Southern Girl said...

Wow yours looks great! My garden literally burned up. I thought it was going to catch on fire!
Too many 100+ days and no rain.

Enjoy your harvest!

Shanon Hilton said...

That's really too bad about the weather where you are. It can be challenging to garden when the climate won't cooperate!

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

Calling by to visit another Outdoor Wednesday participant, you are blessed our harvests have been in much smaller quantities this season.

The 21st Century Housewife© said...

Your garden looks amazing! Our harvests have been much smaller here this summer as well. I was very interested to hear about your fermented garlic and ginger spray for blight - that is wonderful! Thank you for sharing this post with Feed Me Tweet Me. Watch out for some news on my Feed Me Tweet Me post later on today...

Dorothy said...

Beautiful garlic!!! Homegrown is tastier than store-bought-enjoy!