Category Archive: Garden

2017
08/17

Category:
farming
food
Garden
Knitting
Life

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Errands and food prep

Errands and food prep took my day.   As soon as my helpers got here this morning, I had them unload the 4’x6′ stall mats that I had purchased.  These are made from recycled tires and are they heavy!   Each weighs close to 100 pounds.  We put them down in the stalls which the former owner decided needed concrete.   It keeps the moisture and cold from coming up through the concrete.  That way our babies will stay a bit warmer when they are very young.

As soon as they were unloaded, I drove off to the feed store for a dozen bags of grain.   Home again and unloaded.  I took a brief half hour to make and serve lunch and went back to get the other stall mats.   That was a lot of driving around.

These little shell socks are finished.  I love them.   Plus this yarn is so good about being tossed in the washer and dryer.

I made a batch of tomato sauce (including processing) with the tomatoes and zucchini in the garden.  The string beans are cut and ready to cook.   There aren’t enough to run a canning batch, so I’ll just partially cook them and put them in the freezer.  There was a pound and a half of blueberries and another huge bowl of cucumbers wanting to turn into pickles, so tomorrow – maybe.   I have been sharing the zucchini and cucumbers as much as I can.  I really do love all the fresh food from the garden, but I think I just plant too many after a long winter.

The geese love their fresh drinking water.   Remember how small they were this spring.

Embroidered hedgehog and garden

 These embroidered hedgehog are from Hatched in  Africa.   They are darling  (background on left is accurate color).   It is a set of 10 that I will make into a baby blanket bit by bit.  My aim is to embroider one or two each day between other chores.

The blueberries are nearly finished.   I have 55# in the freezer and the rest that I pick we will just eat.  This bowl had 4#15 oz this morning.  My guess is that there will get another 3-4# this year and they will be done.

These sun gold and Oregon gold tomatoes don’t stop.  There are a few Romas here.   Every year I am not gong to keep any volunteers as they are always the little ones.  However, every year, I give in and give most of them a place.   This year they consumed about 45 linear feet of space.   Please help me with my resolve next year to not keep more than 6 volunteers.  I want only to plant half a dozen big tomatoes and half a dozen Romas.   That should be plenty.

2017
08/07

Category:
food
Garden
Life

COMMENTS:
1 Comment »

Day in the kitchen and garden

A day in the kitchen yielded another 13 cups of relish,

And an artichoke, potato, pepper casserole, that took too much time to create and was okay, but we won’t be having it again.

This one was hiding.   But thankfully it went home with the daughter who found it.   We now have 22 sizeable cukes in the refrigerator meaning over 8″ plus many more pickle size on the vines.   I will be finding homes for some most of it.   One hears about zucchini sneaking in people’s cars, on their front porches etc.   Here it will be cucumbers.   The zucchini have about the same number of plants, but are not out to win the race.  But I am choosing not to complain too much because winter is on its way and I will wish we had the fresh produce.

2017
08/06

Category:
farming
food
Garden
quilts

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Male Cardinal is paper pieced

Between picking blueberries and cucumbers, watering, working on the tomatoes,  etc., I finished this little fellow.  He will finish at 8″ square and will get a mate sometime in the next week.  I do enjoy getting a chance to work on projects, but often during the summer, they have to take a back seat.

There is another double batch of cucumber relish now in the refrigerator.   In the morning, I will rinse it, put the rest of the ingredients in and can it.

Beau, the dog in the foreground spent some time at the vet’s on Friday.   He had to have stitches in two places and they updated his shots, which were way out of date.   In two weeks we go back to have the stitches out.   The window that he went through to cut himself now has fencing over it.   He didn’t go through glass, it was a cutout, but had a nail where screening had previously been.  However, we don’t enjoy spending money at the vet’s, so have that covered.

I also went to the grocery store that day and had a physical.   When chores were done, I just lay down for a bit and went to sleep and that is why no blog post.

2017
07/30

Category:
Garden
Knitting
Life

COMMENTS:
1 Comment »

End of July Garden and sock progress

This week, the garden has to catch up.   Our  youngest and her DH came over and I turned them loose in the hoop house.  So I will not have to deal with zucchini or cucumbers unless these missed some.   And that is okay with me.   It appears there are enough tomatoes to keep me making paste and sauce all week and there are still cucumbers and zucchini in the refrigerator.   So my plan this week is to catch up with using the produce.   And we have planted more lettuce this weekend.   The weather is promising 90-102 degree temperatures.   So we probably won’t be moving much mid to late in the day.   But we will be doing a lot of watering.

This morning (forgot to take photo)   I picked 9# of blueberries.   5# will fill a gallon Ziploc bag FULL.   I’m not as fast as I’d like to be as that took 2 hours.   My mind and body are not on the same page.   My mind has not connected with the fact that my body thinks it is older than 50.  So it often times runs way ahead of what the body is willing to do.  Next year maybe the blueberries will be higher on the plants and there won’t be so many at ground level.

Sock Progress has been slow, however, this afternoon I sat and knitted for a bit and turned the heel corner.  I like this particular pattern which is a 7 stitch repeat.  It is “Little Shell Socks” at http://www.knitting-and.com/knitlistgifts/2000/little-shell-socks.htmMy goal is to finish them before the end of August, maybe while enjoying the sun.

 

 

 

2017
07/27

Category:
food
Garden
Life

COMMENTS:
1 Comment »

Relish making, watering, summer produce

The relish I started last night turned into a lovely product.   I made a double batch and canned 11 cups of relish.  DH can’t have sugar, but can have honey.   So I substituted 1 cup honey for the cup and a half of sugar.  Next time, I may go down to 3/4 cup of honey.  It does have salt, but I’m hoping that if he eats a little once in awhile and we aren’t using salt other places, he can get by with it.   If he gets swelling in the legs again, I’ll be sharing it with the children instead.  If you are interested in the recipe, let me know and I will share.    Thank you so much Dar for sharing with me.

Harvest today, included more blueberries, tomatoes, onions, zucchini, basil, and potatoes.   The summer produces so much bounty that it keeps me  busy.   That’s why you see very little creative work then.  In the winter, we live off the summer’s bounty and I have more time for the fiber arts.   Maybe some of you can send me some photos of your work and I can help you enjoy your creative arts.

Even so I need to use fiber just to stay sane.   I thought the month was nearly over, but I just looked at the calendar and I still have most of a week.   Maybe I can sneak in another finish this month.

 

2017
07/24

Category:
Garden
Life

COMMENTS:
2 Comments »

No free fats, no sugar, low salt = blueberry muffins

Since DH is now on a no refined oils, no sugar, low salt diet, I am using my PLANTPURE NATION cookbook by Kim Campbell.   I have not been disappointed.   the recipes have been good.   Here is today’s trial.

Colin’s blueberry muffins;

1 T flax meal in 3 T warm water – set aside until thick

3/4 cup non dairy milk

1/2 cup applesauce

3 T agave or honey

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1 T baking powder

1/2 teas sea salt

Mix dry ingredients together in one bowl and wet ingredients together in another bowl

Mix two items together only until moistened.   Then gently fold in blueberries and walnuts.

1 cup blueberries

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

I used parchment paper cup cake holders.   Bake 400 for 20 minutes.

We picked about 18# of blueberries today – they take a long time to pick, but the taste is so worth it.   There were also more tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers and a single bell pepper to pick.

 

2017
07/20

Category:
Garden

COMMENTS:
1 Comment »

Mid July garden update

I am delighted with the netting that has finally been installed over the blueberry bushes on the left and in the middle.   Grapes on the right were not properly pruned, so will get netting next year.   So far in addition to eating about 5# of berries, I have also put 15# in the freezer.   For an idea of volume, I can get 5# in a gallon freezer bag and it barely zips.   There are many more berries out there and the birds (who got them all last year) lose this year.

In the hoop house starting at the left, the celery, Swiss chard, and walking onions are doing great.   At the end, are planted one of the carrots, I think.   I don’t remember now which is where.  But they were planted today.  On the right nearest is watermelon, with no fruits set yet, cantaloupe are next down the line with zucchini at the end.

On the left are basil, and bits of this and that, including kale and parsley at the far end.   The right is tomatoes from one end to the other.  The far end consists of the second planting of potatoes.

Another full row of tomatoes, mostly volunteers plus 6 cucumber plants.   On the right , the rest of the lettuce which bolted in the heat has become chicken food and lettuce and beets have been replanted.   There are a few beets half way down the row, which were too crowded by the lettuce.    Winter cauliflower,  broccoli, and Brussel sprouts seeds were started today as well.

The garden on the hillside did not fair so well this year, with all the rain that we had this spring.   Even though we have to water the hoop house frequently, it is nice to be able to have some control over the amount of water.

2017
07/05

Category:
Garden
Life
quilts

COMMENTS:
4 Comments »

Sunbonnet Sue #1 finished

Sunbonnet Sue quilt #1 FINISHED – well no label, but whether that happens will depend on who eventually gets it.  The batting said it was good for a 10″ spread and these squares are 8″, so I decided not to mess around inside the square.  It is backed with a pink flannel that matches the light pink on the front and is soft and cuddly.  The finished size is 52 x 63″ – just perfect to wrap around a young lady and/or have as a bed covering.

The weather for the next 10 days is saying daytime highs at 80 and full sun, so we will be out there with hoses going.   Fortunately we have about 6″ mulch on the blueberries and grapes, so they will probably be able to go a week between waterings which will help.  This is absolutely beautiful weather and I don’t want to be inside sewing, cooking, or cleaning.  I’m soaking up as much Vitamin D as possible.   I’m thankful that I can sew/quilt from January through April when it’s too wet and cold to be outside any more than necessary.

2017
07/04

Category:
food
Garden

COMMENTS:
7 Comments »

Happy Independence Day

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY

Summer and it’s produce have official arrived.   We are scheduled for an 80 degree week and we have started picking zucchini, cucumbers and tomatoes.    The tomatoes and zucchini, I’m fine with.   And I can make some pickles, but these plants are loaded.  Besides pickling and eating fresh, how else does one save cucumbers.

And we now have 12 cups and 1 pint of strawberry jam.  In this house, it’s not good to run out of strawberry jam or peanut butter and we ran out of both.   Therefore, tomorrow must include a run to Costco for their Kirkland brand organic peanut butter.

That was the limit of our work today.   We enjoyed a bit of sun and are listening to all the crackers that are popping while still daylight.  The noise scares the animals, so they are locked up for the night.    Enjoy the sights and sounds tonight.