Monday, September 28, 2009

Harvest Monday - 28 September 2009

I might have been gone half of last week, but I don't think the garden cared. Not much is happening. The beans are almost finished. The only cucurbit still producing is the cucumber. I've been having lots of cucumber salads for lunch. They have been supplemented with tomatoes that were picked weeks ago and ripened on the counter. I add dill and some bunching onion and it is quite a tasty salad. I have lettuce that I should be picking, but I'm just not into it yet. I think I ate too much lettuce this spring and got tired of it.

The pineapple tomatillos have picked up. I think my chipmunk is eating other things too now. Before I had to pick them when they just started turning yellow or I wouldn't get any. Now I find totally ripe ones just lying on the ground the way it is meant to be. Maybe our acorns are more tasty. Sadly the plant is getting yellow too, so there is not much life left in it.

The big winner in the harvest tally is my onions. They were picked in August. I don't think I ever talked about them though I did take photos of the whole process. They were harvested and cured without any blogging fanfare - maybe because they were so small and forlorn. Most of them are 1 1/2"-2" in girth. I couldn't weigh them then because they weren't dried and the tops weren't all cut off until now. I mostly ignored them since they were down in the garage. I've used some. Whenever I brought one up I would weigh it and put in into the tally. Now they are all up in the kitchen pantry ready to be used. However I think they will sit there for a while longer. I've been using up my leek sized bunching onions this month. I still have more in the garden.

The raspberries are doing great. Before I had to pick them every day to make sure they wouldn't rot. The weather has been so dry recently that I can pick them every three days and I don't lose any berries at all. Even the wasps seem to have moved on. I might see one or two, but mostly they are gone and are leaving the berries to me. I eat them on my cereal every morning but still have some extra to freeze.

I've been trying to make up my mind what to do with Harvest Monday. I have three options:

1) Give it to someone else for November thru April. I did have a few offers. The best seemed to be from Robin who has a wonderful blog, but she doesn't have comments enabled. I think of Harvest Monday as a community thing and without comments something would be missing. She could do it every week and seems to have a reasonable sized garden. SP8 also offered, but his plot is a tiny, balcony garden. He might well have issues of not having harvests every week.

2) Keep it but don't write about my harvest since I won't have them. Maybe highlight and link to someone else's harvest post that I found the week before.

3) Keep it but do something based on our friend Ben's comment from last week. His comment was: "I wonder if maybe you could switch from harvest to purchase posts, tracking what and how much produce you buy at the store (and what you eat from home storage of your garden's bounty) until the garden's producing again? It would be kind of fascinating to compare the two." I could make it about how I use what I've stored up and what I've had to buy in the store to make up for it. This summer I have been shopping (mostly from the farmers' market) for corn, strawberries, apples, sweet peppers, ginger and one head of celery (which I froze). I've probably bought a lime or lemon or two also. Every fall I also buy winter squash and cabbage from the local farms.

I invite your comments about what you would like to happen. Personally I would really love to see the harvest posts from Australia and other southern regions over my winter. It inspires and gives ideas for the next year. Not to mention it warms up my cold, cold days. How I do it doesn't matter as much to me which is probably why I'm in such a quandary.

Anyway onto the tally.

  • Alliums 3.43
  • Beans 0.38 lbs
  • Berries 0.81 lbs
  • Broccoli 0.23 lbs
  • Cucurbits 0.63 lbs
  • Peppers 0.19 lbs
  • Tomatillo 0.38 lbs

Weekly total: 6.04 lbs
Weekly spent: $0
Yearly total: 190.03 lbs
Yearly earned: $653.38

If you would like to join in showing off your harvest, put your name and URL into Mr. Linky below. It doesn't matter how big or small your harvest is. You don't have to count the pounds like I do. If you have had a harvest this last week, show us and join in!


  1. Hi Daphne, I love the look of those papery tomatillos, they are so attractive and festive! As for your harvest posts, OFB's idea sounds perfect. I would love to know what you buy and how much it costs as you also use what you have put back. Sounds like a winner. You keep posting regularly until the seed starting begins anew. It won't be long, hard as it is to believe, before we are back to the lights and heat mats.

  2. Absolutely beautiful raspberries! We have some raspberries and blackberries behind the shed that grow wild. Not a single berry this year. Your photo is mouthwatering.

    You have some great ideas on continuing your Harvest Mondays. I like Ben's suggestion #3. In fact I was thinking of doing something like this on my own blog myself to track what I actually use for produce giving me a better idea of other things I should plant next year. For example, I know next year I should plant way more garlic, onions, and try potatoes as we consume a lot of these.

  3. Your onions are amazing! I don't have any luck with them. I like OFB's suggestion. I think that would be interesting.

  4. Those raspberries look wonderful, Daphne! I can't wait to purchase some canes next year.
    I vote for number 3. Frankly, I don't think harvest Mondays would be the same if you didn't host it. I like our friend Ben's idea as I'm sure there are a ton of issues/topics that can be discussed each week related to "Harvest"- how much of your stored harvest have you consumed, what you've prepared with your harvest, what you scavenged or bought locally that week. Or just talk about something completely off topic.

  5. Daphne, those onions may be small, but sure are photogenic! I really like the tomatillos, too.

  6. I think option three would prove to be a very interesting study between garden and grocery.

  7. I like option three too - but with a twist to it - those of us that harvest could post winter harvests and then share what purchases and preserved items we used that week as well. I use a combination of fresh harvests from the garden, preserved items, and I almost always purchase fruits as we do not have enough space to grow them 100% for ourselves.

  8. Still hauling those tomatillos in, Daphne ? Amazing !
    What is it about the color red that makes me lose it ? I'm drooling over the berries. (nice pic helps !)
    Lovely, lovely onions !

    I think you make a great HM host, Daphne and extending the concept to what one has harvested, bought or prepared would be in keeping with the idea.

  9. Those berries make me green, uh red, with envy. I've got a little patch of plants that were almost completely chomped by rodents, the plants are about 6" tall now. I got to harvest a handful of berries. Maybe I'll dig them up this winter and try somewhere else in the garden.

    I agree that you should continue to host Harvest Mondays, it wouldn't be the same elsewhere.

  10. Frances, you should smell them too. I keep them on my kitchen counter. They keep for months in their little paper husks. And they smell of fruit and pineapples.

    Grafix Muse, No berries this year? That is really sad. We have wild blueberries on our hill, but I have yet to go out and pick them. They are just too scattered and so tiny. I think it would be really useful to see what I buy over the winter too. It will be an eye opener to see what I've saved too much of or what I have too little of. This was my first year in a long time for garlic and onions. I just got sick of buying them all the time so now I don't need to.

    Lzyjo. well they weren't that great this year, but I've been told that they usually do pretty well in NE and this was a really bad year for them with all the rain. So I'll be trying them again with a few modifications.

    Thomas, I heartily recommend Heritage raspberries. They have done wonders for me. I tried Lanthum, but they just didn't produce well and tended to get sick.

    EG, I wish I had a mix of small and large onions. Sometimes I only need a little, sometimes a lot. Maybe next year they will grow better.

    kitsapFG, the only fruit I harvested this year was raspberries. Luckily I had a lot of those. Next year I'm hoping the blueberries will get going.

    miss m, the tomatillos never stop. They don't give much, but they are consistent. I'm the same with the red color. I love the red peppers in my harvests and the red berries. I miss the red tomatoes.

    Michelle, my berries these last two years have really produced, but we have had two years of amazing rains. They just grow like crazy when we get lots of water. I hope you can find a way to protect your plants. My chipmunks will climb the stalks in the summer. They hate when I discover them there because they don't want to run down the stalk fast. I think the prickers really hurt their feet.

  11. By the looks of Mr.Linky either harvests are waning or gardener stamina is lacking, probably a little of both :-) It is nice that you are still harvesting a few cukes and your beans made me realize I forgot to harvest my dry beans! The onions look nice, My onions were small as well. I find they are a good size for cooking though, it seems I need a small onion more often then a large one.

  12. It's great to see your raspberries still putting out. I harvested some swiss chard and kale this week, but school teaching is catching up with me and I don't have time to do a post about. In fact I'm quite a few posts behind and Oct isn't looking better than Sept!

  13. Those raspberries are just gorgeous!

    And how I wish I had more cucumbers. I found a recipe I loved, JUST before the frost. Now I think about it all the time. Can I really bring myself to buy cucumbers? Oh, I am feeling really wistful now!

  14. I like the idea of reporting on something you bought locally that week; it would interest and help educate folks who are trying to stay local in their diets. I also like featuring something you had preserved and brought out to eat that week, though I'd have nothing to contribute--well, maybe a little pesto!

    Your raspberries look great. I have also noticed that I can pick every few days without mine (the few that I have) getting overripe.

  15. Better late than never, huh?

    You are really making me regret I planted summer raspberries. Those Heritage berries would taste awfully good about now.

  16. Raspberries looks like small strawberries and it taste so sweet,good fruit.Onions, is nutritious.

  17. Dan, yup I think the northern gardening season is winding down. I hope we get some southerners soon to pick up the slack. I know I'm going to be harvesting less and less as time goes on. I will have one more huge harvest when the Chinese cabbage comes in - well if the earwigs don't shred it like they sometimes do. It is an iffy crop, but I love it so much I try anyway. I need to get on to picking my greens again. I was just letting them grow because I knew I would need some veggies to eat later in the fall. I haven't picked my chard in weeks.

    Emily, my raspberries will keep going until the frost kills off the flowers. I probably have a month left of harvests. Though it will slow down sometime in October. I keep getting behind too. Last week I only had three posts. I think that is a record low for me.

    June, thanks. I'm happy to be still getting cucumbers. Last year I got them until the end of September. This year they seem to be following the same pattern. I think soon the vines will die.

    Sally, Well there isn't much locally produced that you can buy around here in the winter. If you want to stay local for the winter you have to put things up and store those root crops. Though there is one winter CSA that gives out those storage crops once a month. I tend to eat a lot of non-local food until my garden starts producing again. I mix that in with my saved food. But truth be told I don't eat as well in the winter as I do in the summer. Trying to eat everything my garden produces really forces me to eat well.

    Annie's Granny, hey you made it under the wire ;> Not that it really matters. I'm quite happy for any post, late or not.

    Auckland, food would not taste as good without onions. Even my husband that wouldn't think of eating something like a fried onion dish knows that they are important to a lot of the things we eat. I love them though even if they are a little too small for onion rings.