Monday, August 3, 2009

Gardening Is a Full-Time Job

I can't keep up.

The zucchini were bad enough, and they still keep coming. But OMG, the cucumbers have kicked in now! Here's today's count: 7 zucchini, 11 sun sugar tomatoes, and 20 cucumbers. (I promise I will get you a running total of produce harvested in the next week.)

I'll be out of town for the next couple of days, so I'm hoping that by the time I return, I'll have some of the bigger tomatoes ready. I'm looking forward to a light, summery cucumber-tomato vinaigrette salad! Of course, that means we need a few hot, humid days, and Mother Nature hasn't been truly cooperative in the weather department this summer.

I spent time this evening washing freezer canning jars so I can move my first batch of bread-and-butter pickles into the jars for freezing. Tomorrow, I'll set a few cucumbers aside and turn the rest into a second batch of bread-and-butter pickles. I also diced and froze 10 beautiful peppers I bought at the local farmer's market--6 green peppers, 4 chocolate beauties (although they were picked before they became "chocolate"), and a lilac pepper. I just mixed them all and then separated them into snack-size Ziplocs, 1/2 cup of chopped pepper mix per baggie, and then bagged all those in a gallon-size Ziploc that I labeled and dated.

The okra and sunflowers continue to grow. The cilantro is growing but hidden beneath cucumber vines, as is one of the dill plants; the other has shot up above the cucumber plants. When I return from my trip, I'm going to harvest some of the mint we have growing wild in our yard and play with my dehydrator. I'm not sure what I'll do with a bunch of dehydrated mint, but I'm sure I'll think of something.

The dishwasher has stopped, which means I have clean, sterilized canning jars calling me.

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