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Archive for August, 2010

Over the past few weeks we have been harvesting a few pounds of tomatoes every time we go to the garden.  As I mentioned in several previous posts I am growing 8 varieties of tomatoes this summer, two plants of each.   Here are some pictures of 2 of the 8 varieties I am growing:

Austin’s Red Pear Tomatoes

I grew this variety last summer, and the seeds that were sown were harvested from last year’s crop.

Austin's Red Pear Tomato

Austin's Red Pear Tomato

Austin's Red Pear Tomato

Hartman’s Yellow Gooseberry Tomatoes

Like the Red Pear tomatoes, this is the second year that I have grown this variety. The seeds that were sown were also harvested from last year’s crop.

Gooseberry Tomato

Gooseberry Tomato

Gooseberry Tomato

Gooseberry Tomato

Stay tuned for pictures of the other varieties that I am growing this summer…

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Pickles

A couple of weekends ago I decided to make homemade dill pickles.  This was my first attempt in making pickles and I won’t know the results for a few more weeks.  The pickles have to marinate for about 8 weeks before they can be eaten.

As I mentioned in an earlier post I am growing 2 varieties of cucumbers this summer in an Earthbox.  To date I have harvested about 2-dozen cucumbers, most of which I used to make the pickles.  I also am growing dill over at the community garden plot.  I think dill may be my new favorite herb,  It looks really cool, and smells great.

Before I made the pickles I had to search for a recipe, unfortunately, I didn’t find one that really stood out so I just winged it.

I started by soaking the cucumbers in a turmeric/water solution.  About 1 tsp. of Turmeric and then cover the cucumbers with water.  Let the cucumbers marinate for about an hour.

Pickles marinating in turmeric and water

Meanwhile prepare you canning jars, dill, and garlic

canning jars

dill heads

dill weed

dill heads and dill weed

garlic

After the cucumbers have marinated for about an hour, place 2 garlic cloves in each jar.  Then place a dill head, and a couple of sprigs of dill weed in each jar.  Finally arrange your cucumbers in the jar.

Next, make your brine.  You will bring vinegar, pickling salt, sugar, and water to a boil.

Then using a jar funnel pour the brine over your cucumbers.

Finally, put the jars in the canner of boiling water for 10 minutes.

Here are a couple of pictures of my pickles:

pickles

pickles

Now the hard part, I have to wait another 6 weeks to eat them.

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On the Thursday before our wedding Natalie’s mom (Cindy), Natalie, and I headed over to the garden to harvest the flowers that we would use for the bouquets, decorations, and table centerpieces.  When we arrived here is what the flowers looked like:

zinnias

zinnias

Bells of Ireland

red zinnia

We spent about an hour cutting the best zinnias, bells of ireland, snapdragons, and rudbeckia.  Here are some pics post-cut:

buckets of wedding flowers

buckets of wedding flowers

Rudbeckia and Bells of Ireland

me with the wedding flowers

Natalie and I with our wedding flowers

We then headed home to arrange the flowers for the centerpieces and bouquets.  Natalie’s sisters, Olivia and Lindsay, helped out with this step:

Olivia (left) and Lindsay (right) arranging a bouquet

Lindsay arranging the centerpieces

Centerpieces

Completed centerpieces

Natalie with her bouquet

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I’m back…

After neglecting my blog for about a month or so, stay tuned for new posts over the next couple of weeks.

The reason for my absence is because my partner of 9 1/2 years, Natalie,  and I got married on July 24.  Leading up to our wedding I spent many evenings in the garden tending to our wedding flowers (zinnias, snapdragons, bells of ireland, and rudbeckia) along with many other wedding related tasks which left me very little time to blog.    Below is a small sample of how our wedding bouquets and center pieces turned out:

As you will see in future posts our garden is crazy this year.  Due to the very warm weather, and plenty of rain things have really taken off.  Many of our tomato plants got so large they toppled their cages.  For the first time in 3 years of trying I may have a successful crop of peppers.

That’s all for now,  stay tuned for more wedding flower pictures, garden pictures, and more…

“Earth laughs in flower.”– Ralph Waldo Emerson

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