Saturday, September 4, 2010

Harvest time again!

Last year by this time, I was harvesting and storing as fast as I could go, listening to "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" on cd to keep motivated, and delivering bags of fresh produce to the local food bank every week.  But, if you read my spring posts, you know we had delays and frustration, and the weather was very cold during early summer.  So, we are definitely eating lots of yummy fresh food these days, but not giving much away. 
Here's part of the veggie garden, looking toward the pumpkin patch.  You can see that we harvested and tilled two of the raised beds, and the last one was just planted with winter broccoli.
The bees have been working all over our garden, but the honey super is empty.  We removed the queen excluder, hoping they would start building some comb on those frames, but it seems like we might not get honey this year.
If you look carefully at this shot, you can see that our tomato plants are laden with beautful GREEN tomatoes.  If they do finally turn red, it will likely happen all at once, so I'll be trying to find ways to use and store all of them.  My fear is that they will just begin to go bad, without ever ripening.  Everyone I know has had the same tomato trouble this year, blaming it on the cool early summer temps.

One new thing we did this year was to hand-pollinate our cucumbers and squashes.  Anouk learned to do it very well, so she helps to keep on top of it.  I feel like I have a much more intimate relationship with my vegetables.  It's interesting to see the female flowers open, waiting eagerly for some action, then to look for the male flowers, with their very male anatomy, and to intervene on their behalf.  Sometimes a plant will have a ton of females, with no males in sight, and other times it's the opposite.  And it is always sad to see the withered fruit of a female that was never pollinated; a loss of potential food.  Since we started hand-pollinating, we have so many more cucumbers, it's amazing!  And they are absolutely delicious.
I thought I would end with a photo of one of our Romanesco Cauliflowers, because this has to be my favorite thing growing in the garden right now.  Isn't it fantastic?


  1. None of my Romanescos made it past seedling stage. What's your secret?

  2. First, your goats should bust into your garden and eat all of your starts. Replant. Then, the deer should chew the tops off of the starts, at least twice. Stomp, rant, sigh, and water regularly.

    Actually, I have no idea what we must have done right. Soil amendment?

  3. Lovely garden! I, too, have had less abundance then usual this year. At least there's enough to eat, though!