Monday, July 26, 2010

No Monday Garden Update Today!

It's been a rough couple of months for me because I've been near crippled with nausea from the pregnancy of our 3rd.  I have not tended the garden in so long that when I look at it now it sadens me frankly!  I wish I could just till over the entire thing and start over from scratch that's how crazy the weeds have taken over in my absence!!!  I seriously don't know where to start.  The weather has been crazy hot (though thankfully it's only 90 today) and I just haven't been able to do what I used to.  I feel the same of my house too.  Things are starting to change though, so I'm looking forward to being more like my former self!

So, on a whim today, I decided to delete my Facebook account.  I just don't have time for it right now.  Maybe later I'll change my mind.  I just figure most of what I share is public here and I really don't have the time to dedicate to both at the moment.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Monday Garden Update!

Over here, it's been another crazy week.  My garden continues to look sorry and in desperate need of attention.  We recovered from our illnesses just soon enough to spend the last several days in Charleston, SC on a mini-vacay.  Needless to say, no one has really touched the garden in a solid two weeks.  I still haven't planted the peas, but I WILL do those this week and I WILL transfer the broccoli into jiffy pots.

Two weeks of weeds :(

It appears the pumpkin died while we were away.  It's OK, it was on death's door anyway.  I guess next year will be trial #3 at those here.  The funny thing is that we had great luck with pumpkins while living in Albuquerque and you'd think that area would be far less ideal. 

I really didn't give this pumpkin a lot of love this year because it kept crawling on top of my peppers, beans and tomatoes.  Next year we'll give the pumpkin a nice spot outside of the garden where it can grow free and as big as it would like.  Sorry pumpkin!

Dead pumpkin

On to good news.  We have our very first eggplant!!!  I'm so very excited about this!  To think I grew these from seed in February?!  I'm absolutely psyched about it!  I hope we aren't too far off from some mature eggplant.


Also, we are bursting with carrots.  I have yet to harvest all of them.  I made an amazing beef stew with my own onions, carrots and blue potatoes last week when we under the weather.  It was AMAZING! 

Carrots (There is one skinny, not-quite-ready parsnip on the left)

Speaking of, I'm not sure what to do with our harvested potatoes.  It seems too damp under the house to store them there yet it is too hot in the garage.  So, they are sitting in our pantry.  Hopefully they will keep as long as it takes to go through them.  I'll have to find another location for the onions because I read storing them together will cause the onions to go bad. 

I imagine it will only take us through October or so to eat all the potatoes if not sooner.  We didn't plant a huge amount and I have given quite a bit away to family and friends.  I guess we'll see how it goes.  Hopefully, I'm not sorely disappointed to find they've gone bad in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Monday Garden Update and Weekend In Review

First the Garden Update:

I haven't done much at all in the garden this week.  I was supposed to put the broccoli underneath the house in jiffy pots, plant the peas, weed the strawberries... but none of that has happened.   I was busy last week with my neice and nephews coming in to town.  The fun must have compromised my immune system because I came down with a nasty chest cold coupled with flu-like stomach issues a few days ago.  It has been a cripling combination. 
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My lovely niece modeling with some onions and a carrot

The garden work has really piled up in my absence.  The weeds seem to have taken over.  I had Nick pick out the onions and yet another giant batch of green beans today because I haven't seemed to have the energy to do it myself.  (I feel like a 90 year old lady saying that.)  The carrots are just about ready (see pic above) but my hope is that they will hold a bit longer and I'll get to harvesting them the following week.

Onions in the process of being cured

We've had enough tomatoes and basil and onion to make a giant vat of homegrown Roasted Tomato Basil Soup.  This has come in very handy with the recent round of illnesses.


Onto the Week in Review:

I had a tremondous time enjoying some one-on-one time with my niece and nephew.  I don't get this kind of quality time with them that much, so it was really important to me they spend a long weekend with us in the country.

While they were here, we played pirate ship on the hammock...


toured the grounds at UVA....

ate lots of pizza...

toured James Madison's Home....


ran a muck on the grounds and took scenic photos...
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We fed the horses.


and enjoyed the scenery.


We also played a lot of Uno and 5 card draw poker into the wee hours of the evening!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Monday Garden Update

We finished harvesting our shallots and potatoes this week and we had quite the bounty.  I'm shocked and delighted by the results.  We will be definitely doing both again next year for sure!  The plunder has left the garden looking a little bare though.   It doesn't help that none of the brussel sprouts I planted in the lower level have srpouted either!  Oh well, we aren't big brussel sprout eaters anyway, just wanted to give it a go!


In other garden news, I'm almost ready to put the cauliflower and broccoli in jiffy pots.  It looks as though we only had a 75% germination success rate with them and I didn't plant much already because we only have but so much room in the garden so I'm a little disappointed by that.  Next time I'll have to plant extra in the event they don't all germinate like this time but have the will power to get rid of any extra if there isn't enough room in the garden instead of craming them in like I did this Spring!

Broccoli and Cauliflower growing underneath the house.

Our tomatoes are doing well for the most part although the roma tomatoes appear to be somewhat small.  The roma tomato plant suffered a setback early on with a mildew infestation.  We've been nursing it back to health with some organic anti-fungal spray.  All the new growth looks great so I'm kind of surprised they are still so small.  You can see the roma tomatoes in the picture below aren't but two to three times in length as the large grape tomatoes we have.  Let's hope they do better!

Big Boys, Roma and Grape Tomatoes

We've been continuing to harvest an AMAZING amount of green beans.  We are really going to love those this winter.  I'm glad I didn't hold back.  We've had several bushels fulls already and we have more to go!

The sunflowers I planted by the shed are not doing that great.  However, we have a bird feeder with sun flower seeds and below it we have many sunflowers that are going crazy.  So, I'd prefer to have them by the shed, but I'll settle our back yard!


I suppose that's all for this week!  For more garden reading check out Feet Off the Table's Monday Garden Club!

Happy 4th Y'all!

Now, before anyone accuses me of dressing my kids over-the-top like I used to do to my pug Olive, I'd like to note that I did not purchase the outfits the children are wearing.  Their outfits were gifts from the grandparents and there is really on a few occassions where these outfits are appropriate so I was obliged to dress them up for the fourth.  Blame G-pa and Papa for their Texan outfits, though I believe they purchased them in Kentucky.


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We had several options for fireworks in our area including a downtown city show, but we opted for the one a bit out of the way with a small town feel. The show we went to was nestled in the mountains, very scenic and promised much better people watching.

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Of course the kids had a total blast. GreenEyes loved the sparklers but hated the overhead fireworks. Ladybug liked the opposite. She was scared of the sparklers but loved the overhead fireworks.  Go figure.

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Diet coke + creullers + sparklers = good times

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Hope y'all had an awesome, safe holiday!