Friday, September 24, 2010

What No Photos?

I rarely write a post without photos, but today is it. I wanted to take some photos without my landscapers around. They bring in their big trucks and block the driveway. It is hard enough to get my work done much less get to the right distance for a photo. Last night they were still around when I went to dance class. This morning they were here just before 7am. I think they are trying to get it finished before the weekend. So your fall update will be photoless. And I'll try to get some finished photos of the yard next week. The fencing still won't be up, but that will be weeks down the road from now.

On to the fall update. On Tuesday, I ripped out four more tomato plants. Two were just getting sick, Market Miracle and Principe Borghese. Two were in the way, Romeo and Amish Paste. The latter two were in the way of part of my fall garden. Yes I know it is the end of September, but I still wanted a little more space. What I put in there were thinnings from my other little fall garden patch. Plus I seeded some more radishes and Japanese turnips. The transplants were: Fun Jen, Chinese broccoli, tatsoi, and two types of small bok choy. I watered them in well. I was supposed to water them again yesterday, but the workers were always in the way of the hose yesterday so it didn't get done. This morning there they were again so I just worked around them. Yesterday I could see the Fun Jen wilting through the row cover. Its roots aren't fully established yet and it was hot on Wednesday.

I also watered the spinach patch. It has come up really spotty so far. I should have put a row cover over it, but haven't yet. The row cover really helps hold in the moisture and makes things germinate better.

Which brings me to another subject. Where is fall? We seem to have gotten a nice week or so of fall weather (but without the rain), but then summer came back. Wednesday was 86F and today and tomorrow are supposed to hit the low 80s too. I remember ages ago my son's birthday was the day that we turned on the heat in the house. His birthday has come and gone and it hasn't gotten below 72 in the house yet. Now it could be partly because we have a new house which means it is well insulated and tight. But according to we haven't even gotten into the 40Fs at night yet. Weird.

And I really want my rain to come back for the fall (which might happen next week, if so I'll throw a celebration). When I pulled out the tomatoes I hand watered that spot for ages and ages and it still didn't get wet more than four inches down. The whole bed is dry as a bone. It just sucks up water. Kinda freaky for New England. We average about 4" (+/- 1/2" depending on the month) of precipitation a month all year long. Places that are on wells are on water restrictions. We aren't as our water comes from a huge reservoir and we had massive floods this spring.

OK enough whining. I'll leave you all on a good note. It may not be harvest Monday, but I had a really nice harvest the other day. When I transplanted I also thinned out the bok choy since it was way too close together. I had my first meal of fall Asian greens. I use the white stemmed bok choy and made a stir fry for dinner. Oh yum. Yum Yum Yum. I have missed them.

I also harvested some turnips and radishes. My SIL is coming to visit this weekend and has requested food from the garden. So the radishes will go into a cucumber and radish salad (both from the garden). Though I'll taste them first to make sure they aren't too strong from the warm weather. In addition there will be an orange and tomato salsa to garnish the spicy shrimp (with Cherokee Purple tomatoes). The black bean soup sadly those won't feature my black beans, but it will feature my home made salsa as I use a really easy recipe that is basically black beans, broth, salsa, and cumin. Really easy, especially if you are using canned beans like I am this time. And to be kind to my husband I'll make a Mexican rice that he likes (with my own tomato sauce). He won't eat anything else on the menu except the shrimp. So I need something for him. Hmm maybe I'll take photos of the meal for you. I haven't done a cooking post in quite a while. I was going to do a goodbye to the summer with photos of summer food I've taken. But I never got around to it. And really it still feels like summer.


  1. (sigh) Summer... what is that?! LOL! We seem to be in inverse universes this year. We are struggling to get up over 60 degrees for our daytime highs, night time temps in mid to upper 40's. Rain/showers about every other day - so everything is damp and the hot weather crop plants (such as tomatoes) are moldering and dieing as a result. I have a whole tomato patch to remove plants from but won't be getting to it as I am traveling this weekend.

    Your planned dinner sounds delicious - please do take pictures and share!

  2. We've been having some very cool nights down here on the south shore. The hot days are a bit bizarre though. I don't like the heat while doing all the fall chores. Enjoy your Asian greens and the last of the tomatoes.

  3. My fall vegetables are starting to come in. I planted sweet potatoes ages ago and pulled some of them yesterday. Its still pretty hot here in Houston, but we're supposed to get our first cool front soon. I can't wait.

    Melissa @

  4. I prepared the first fall Asian greens for dinner last night as well. I had missed them too. The only problem is, I don't think I have enough and my main sowing of Asian greens are still at the seedling stage.

    I think I'm going to start more inside and only transplant them outdoors when they are at a decent size (around mid-October). I'm hoping this will speed up their time to maturity. They seemed to withstand frosts and I remember they grew well into November last year under cover.

  5. We seem to be getting your weather. I never turn my heat on until October, but gave in two days ago. It's been in the low 40s every night, a good 10-15 degrees below normal, as are our daytime temps. Forecast is for soaring back up into the mid to high 80s in the next few days.

    You get 4" of rain a month? We've had about 4" for the entire year!

  6. Laura, I know. Last year it was just the opposite. The northwest was getting warmer than usual temps and us lower than normal (record breaking cold spells). This year we switched. I'll try to remember to take photos.

    The Mom, I hate heat when I'm doing fall chores too. It is just wrong to pull down a tomato when the temps are in the 80s.

    Melissa, I would guess in Houston that there isn't much gardening going on in the summer. I don't think I could live where it was so hot. I just about died this summer and we never got into the 100s. Well maybe that one day.

    Thomas, I know I don't have enough. I keep telling myself next year I'll have plenty. I just need patience.

    Granny. Well this year we didn't get 4" each month. We got 11" in a few days in the spring. Then some more multiple inch flooding storms. Then it all stopped for the summer. I hope we get a few inches next week. The predictions say rain starts on Tuesday and continues on and off through Saturday. Hmm well I hope we don't get rain on Saturday (I'm stuck outside all day long), but the rest of the week would be good.

  7. Daphne, I wonder if you would share a few of your Amish Paste tomato seeds with me... if you harvest them!

    I really wanted to grow them this year! But...


  8. Toni, in November I'll get all my seeds together and post what I have to give away. I'm sure Amish Paste will make the list. I'm pretty sure I saved some of those.

  9. It has been hot here too, especially today. But it has been rather cold at times too, best of both worlds I guess! Dinner sounds good :-)

  10. At least you get rain. It hasn't rained here in southern California since April, and we don't expect any for another month. We're on water restriction, but by conserving water indoors and having drought-tolerant landscaping, we have enough water for our fruits and vegetables. But this year's weather sure has been weird. My Thanksgiving cactus is blooming now and my paperwhite narcissus are coming up already.