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    • #309075

      Garden 2012 — This year we are in a drought, but it did not stop our gardening efforts.

      None of our bean crops produced. They came up, had nice plants even had pods, but the pods seemed to disappear. Strange!

      Our Tomatoes produced plenty for fresh eating, but the quality and quantity was not good enough to can.

      Cabbage and other assorted things did fine for fresh eating, as well, but not enough for storing.

      We were/are truly blessed with an over abundance of potatoes, onions, summer squash, zucchini, and of all things watermelons. Still harvesting these, except for the onions which have all been harvested.

      The Eggplants and Bell Peppers have just this week began to produce.

      Pumpkins and winter squash is still out there. Did have quite a few spaghetti squash that have been harvested.

      Not much on our fruit or nut trees, but our table grapes are giving us a fine harvest.

      Well, that’s all I can think of at the moment; so, I will close this post.

      How did Your garden grow? What did you plant?

      Thanks; Virginia

    • #432696

      I only have a small area to use for a garden, so not much was planted.
      We’ve been in drought conditions too…makes it a bit harder…
      A couple of my tomato plants died a while back, but still have 7 left. They appear to be in really good health, although I did have issues with them earlier in the summer. All of the plants have a ton of small green tomatoes, but they’re not getting large…not sure what’s the problem there.
      I have a pot of bell peppers with 4 plants-they’re doing really well. I’ve got three peppers on there now. One, I should’ve picked today, and two others that should be ready in about a week.
      My original zucchini plants have died out, but I planted others and they’re growing nicely.
      My jalapeno pepper plants are growing but still haven’t produced anything.
      The garlic and onions I experimented with didn’t do after all.
      I planted asparagus, but can’t do anything with it this year.
      I also planted carrots, but it was in a too shallow container and they didn’t do that well.

      All in all, better than expected but not as well as it could have been.
      Something I’m gonna work on before next summer…

    • #432945

      We have been picking a lot of eggplants and peppers this last week. Harvested around 6 gallons of table grapes from our 3 grape vines, they were really good and sweet. Since the rain, a lot of stuff is coming up, too late for most of it around here but you never know. Harvested our first sugar pie pumpkin the other day and it made two pumpkin pies. Happy Gardening, everyone! Thanks; Virginia

    • #432951

      I also only have a small area to grow, the tomatoes are a good size but only 1-3 have turned red, rest are still green. Pepper plants grew, but no peppers! This was the first year that I planted brocolli, they took awhile to grow, but tasted great (will plant more of this next year). Green Beans and Peas, nice plants but no product ( I can normally get GB to grow, but never can get the peas to produce). Cucumbers coming out of my ears!

    • #432941
      Avatar for VirginiaLiss
      Keymaster

      Our tomatoes, jalapenos and watermelon took off and did amazing, as did the eggplant. We just planted peas this past week, my cucumbers were sad due to the ridiculous amounts of rain we got day after day after day. This has been, by far, the rainiest year we’ve ever had here. I would have loved to send some over to our members who so desperately needed it!

      I put away quite a few quarts and pints of salsa, peaches, jams and pie fillings- but not nearly as many as previous years. I was actually considering paying the farmers market a visit this weekend and pick up a few more cases of veggies to can.

      We’ve begun harvesting sweet potatoes (these actually grew on their own from some pieces that were left over in our garden from last year). Our apple trees finally produced enough delicious apples to make a couple fall dishes and a fresh pie. We’ll be planting a few more trees in a few weeks. We lost a couple of our cherry trees this year, perhaps to a virus or mold. It’s hard to tell- they were lush and beautiful one day and the very next day dead as a doornail.

      I’ve planted some lettuce, spinach and peas for a 2nd crop this fall. It’s taken time for me to get acclimated to the growing schedule in the South. When you grow up starting seeds on Easter Sunday and harvesting in Early August, it’s hard to change!

      I just started a couple new tomato plants in buckets indoors so we can have fresh tomatoes all winter long. I also planted some basil with them. Does anyone else plant tomatoes in the fall so they can have them fresh throughout the winter or for gifts? The only downfall is that you have to pay attention to them when they flower and pollinate them yourself with a q-tip.

      Our pomegranates didn’t survive the rain, but at least the plants themselves are growing well. We planted 4 kiwi trees this year as well.

    • #433188

      We are being over ran with eggplants and peppers now. Still have zucchini and yellow summer squash coming in. A cucumber here and there, a few more tomatoes have ripened. Beans still a no go for this year. (we had three plantings but not enough rain.) I have brought tomato plants that were growing inside for the winter but they only ripened the green ones that were set and did not flower. Maybe I need to start new plants like you did. Might do that. I was given a kiwi plant/tree in a pot last year, it is growing (still in its pot) in the living room right now. Happy gardening, everyone ! Thanks; Virginia

    • #433217

      We got a lot of zucchini, cucumbers, and Italian Plum tomatoes, so we made fresh pickles, dried or froze the zucchini / yellow squash, and sun-dried the tomatoes. Can’t wait for winter to rehydrate the tomatoes with a bit of Marsala wine added to the water – it makes mouth watering sauces. Most of our garden is now in containers for the rest of this season. Once we get the greenhouse ready, I will make cuttings of my tomato and pepper plants to go in hanging baskets in the greenhouse. I don’t expect very much from this year’s greenhouse garden because we should have had some of our winter plants started by now – and we just didn’t have the time. Is any one else using a greenhouse or cold frame to grow garden goodies this summer? – Jane

    • #433220

      My Tomatoes Sucked this year..They was little and stayed Green..some ripen enough to have a few salads… we had alot of green tomatoes..even got enough green to pickle them..and fry them

    • #433221

      I love fried green tomatoes. My grand mother used to make them. (Our family is also from Kentucky originally) I wonder if we fix them the same way. We either coat them in corn batter or diced them up with onions and make corn fritters.
      My California Kids and husband loves them, too.
      I’m headed for KY in about two weeks to visit relatives. Have the nights gotten below 40 yet?

    • #433224

      Yes we make them the same:) love me some fried Green tomatoes and corn Fritters..Yummy..Yep it’s been very cool at night In the low 40’s and High 50’s..I love the Fall nights..I’m in Paducah Kentucky

    • #433244

      @Vampixen 247076 wrote:

      My Tomatoes Sucked this year..They was little and stayed Green..some ripen enough to have a few salads… we had alot of green tomatoes..even got enough green to pickle them..and fry them

      I wish I had seen this earlier! Have you ever tried liss’ Green Tomato Jam recipe?? OMG she sent it to the discussion list a few years ago an now we make it every year. You can make Raspberry or Blackberry or Strawberry (green tomato) jam and it’s really really awesome!

      You just use green tomatoes and whatever berry flavored jello and pectin.

    • #433258

      @jrodgers 247077 wrote:

      I love fried green tomatoes. My grand mother used to make them. (Our family is also from Kentucky originally) I wonder if we fix them the same way. We either coat them in corn batter or diced them up with onions and make corn fritters.
      My California Kids and husband loves them, too.
      I’m headed for KY in about two weeks to visit relatives. Have the nights gotten below 40 yet?

      I love fried green tomatoes too!!
      I usually slice the tomatoes, dry them a tad, sprinkle a touch cornstarch, then plop them through a seasoned batter-then fry. Make sure to drain them on paper towels after cooking and to serve them asap after cooking.
      Another way we enjoy them-dice them into med-large chunks then add s, p, diced onions, cornmeal and a tsp or two of flour. Mix then fry like potatoes. Yummmmm…

      @Jane 247337 wrote:

      I wish I had seen this earlier! Have you ever tried liss’ Green Tomato Jam recipe?? OMG she sent it to the discussion list a few years ago an now we make it every year. You can make Raspberry or Blackberry or Strawberry (green tomato) jam and it’s really really awesome!

      You just use green tomatoes and whatever berry flavored jello and pectin.

      Sounds VERY interesting…gonna have to look for this and try it.
      Thanks for sharing the information!!

    • #433320

      One thing I noticed about my pepper plants is that they don’t like to have wet soil around them. If I water them too much I either get no peppers or peppers that are stunted. I planted them in containers this year, so I water them only when the soil is dry. Once the tomatoes set fruit, the soil is always dry – they pull up a lot of water, so they keep me busy. I have also heard that peppers like a lot of light, one of my friends was experimenting with putting foil under her pepper plants, since she did this to all of them I had nothing to compare. She did get lots of growth and peppers. DO you have any idea what the pH of your soil is?

    • #433321

      It sounds delicious. I’m going to do a search for it and give it a try. Thanks for the suggestion.

    • #433322

      I’m headed for Owensboro, and I may drive up to Shelbyville and Louisville to see some cousins. Its been 30 years since I was back home, I can’t even imagine how much it must have changed. Thanks for the info. I should be able to get by with a jacket. Hopefully the leaves will start changing by the time I leave for California. My husband wants pictures of a real fall! 🙂

    • #433323

      We cook them the same way! I love to eat them with lots of salt!

    • #433720

      This years outside garden is being put to bed, now. We harvested the sweet potatoes, got around 400 pounds of them. We harvested the pumpkins, got plenty of them.

      (did you know that the world record sized pumpkin is now 2009 pounds? We don’t grow them for show or for records (ours are for eating) but it is an interesting thing to watch.) We were surprised a few weeks ago when we found that our soup beans actually had beans on them. That was a pleasant surprise.

      Harvested them and have enough to restock the dry bean box of that variety. We didn’t think we had any kind of beans this year, with the drought and extreme heat we had this summer. Happy Gardening!

      Thanks; Virginia

    • #433719

      That’s a great yield of sweet potatoes. Ho w large was your planting area? Do you sell the extra?

      What are your favorite sweet potato recipes? I have a daughter who simply loves sweet potatoes. When she was a baby she ate so many the skin on her feet and palms turned golden from the beta carotene.

      The doctor just laughed when I brought her in and answered his questions about what she liked to eat! JRodgers

    • #433721

      We give stuff lots of room to spread there were 3 rows in a 120 foot by 20 foot area. Could have been lots more planted but … We give all of our garden extra to the food kitchen at the local Mission.

      I use sweet potatoes in all kinds of ways just like regular potatoes. I will post some recipes later. Had a nephew that turned yellowesh from eating carrots when he was small, funny now that he is grown he won’t touch a carrot or any other vegetable.

      Happy Gardening! Thanks; Virginia

    • #433797

      Not exactly a recipe, but my favorite way to have sweet potatoes is what I call a Mixed Potato Mash. I use approximately 1 part sweet potatoes cut in pieces (for boiling) to 3 parts regular (Irish aka White) potatoes cut in pieces. Put in pan add water, boil, drain and mash (just as you do for regular mashed potatoes).

      I add butter, salt and pepper to taste. Sometimes but not always add milk. This is a simple but tasty way to eat sweet potatoes.

      My husband prefers it if I add a cut up onion to the pan when I put the potatoes in. A variation of this I like is a Potato Carrot Mash, where the sweet potatoes are replaced with carrots. Will post more later.

      Thanks; Virginia

    • #433833

      I’ve not had a sweet potato carrot mash, but I’ve had a sweet potato and carrot fritter thing…lol
      It was shredded sweet potatoes and carrots, with a little diced/minced onion, and of course, salt and pepper. (Wish I knew if egg and flour was used as a binder…)
      It was so good! I wish I had the recipe for that one…I would so have it tonight!!

    • #433836

      Here is a recipe for you.

      Sweet Potato Pancakes with Carrot and Onion

      2 large Sweet Potatoes, peeled and grated
      1 Onion, finely chopped
      2 Carrots, grated
      Juice of half a Lemon
      3 Tablespoons Cornflour
      2 Eggs, beaten
      Pinch of black Pepper
      Salt, to taste (optional)
      1 tablespoon Virgin Olive Oil

      In a large bowl, mix sweet potatoes, onion, carrots, lemon juice, cornflour and eggs. Add black pepper to season and salt if desired.
      Warm the olive oil in a non-stick pan. Pour a large tablespoon of the sweet potato mixture into the middle of the pan and make a thin pancake about 2 inches in diameter.

      Fit in as many pancakes as possible in the pan (without them touching). Cook for about 2 minutes on each side until cooked throughout and slightly browned.

      Here are a couple of sauce recipes that go well with these:

      Yogurt Salsa Sauce

      1/2 cup Salsa
      1/3 cup Yogurt
      1 Tablespoon Lime Juice

      Mix yogurt, lime and salsa together.

      Spinach Sauce

      1/2 clove Garlic
      about 2 -3 handfuls Spinach
      3 Shallots
      1/2 cup Sour Cream
      1 Avocado
      small handful of Basil

      Place all ingredients in blender and whiz till smooth

      Hope this helps. Thanks; Virginia

    • #434147

      That recipe sounds like what I ate..
      Thank you so much for a recipe for it!!!
      Definitely gonna have it soon! 😉

    • #434263

      My container garden still has lots of peppers, tomatoes and new blossoms. I think being next to the stucco wall helps keep it warm at night. I wonder how long I can keep it going without having to put the plants in the greenhouse? What is the latest hard frost you’ve had in your area?

    • #434579

      Does anyone garden by astrology and moon signs?

    • #434585
      Avatar for VirginiaLiss
      Keymaster

      @AlaFaye 255267 wrote:

      Does anyone garden by astrology and moon signs?

      We frequently plant, weed, and harvest based on the phases of the moon. We also follow the farmers almanac for best fishing days as well.

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