~*July Food Growing Mamas*~ - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 35 Old 07-01-2011, 09:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, it's July already!!  I have beans coming on finally.  Yay!!  I've been so behind and I haven't been on here much.  This pregnancy and summer is going by so fast.  And then in November we will be moving again and hopefully it will be a permanent move for 10years.  fingersx.gif  It's back to MI hopefully to the house my dh bought before I knew him.  It's perfect for raising kids and I can have a garden, not huge, but something and maybe a couple fruit trees and some bunnies to fertilize everything.treehugger.gif  So, next season might be a new gardening zone, again.lol.gif  Hopefully it will stay that way for a long long time.

 

How are all your gardens growing?

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#2 of 35 Old 07-03-2011, 08:28 PM
 
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It feels nice to have time to keep up with the garden this season.  Cedar waxwings haven't eaten all the berries (yet) this year  and I hope I'll get to nosh on some goumi berries.  Broccoli is growing and new side shoots are getting bigger.  Arugula is flowering and I will make sure DH doesn't pull it before it goes to seed.  Why buy arugula seed, I ask, it's a weed!

    The girls are raiding the peas now.  That's what I plant them for.  I hate peas!   Garlic looks really good this year.  Self-sown kale is big enough to start harvesting.  I am so done with day-neutral strawberries.  I didn't pinch the first blossoms, which, of course are producing little tasteless strawberry buttons.  I want berries NOW!  

     Our Pacific NW spring was really slow.  On one hand, it was nice not to get that hot stretch that tricks pumpkins and other heat-lovers to sprout, only to be socked in by more cold weather.  That has been the pattern for years, but this year everything has been pretty steady.  Now if we get a brilliant September and early October, we might be able to salvage this crazy year.


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#3 of 35 Old 07-05-2011, 04:38 AM
 
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We were on vacation for the last week. I got home yesterday to see that my garden has exploded! I have now figured out that the 7 volunteer plants I let go have turned out to be 1 pumpkin and 6 zucchini. There are about 5 tomatillo plants that have popped up as well. The veggies I actually planted are slowly coming along.

We're getting a small amount of peas, snow peas, banana peppers and raspberries. I also harvested 10 pounds of zucchini from the volunteer plants yesterday. I'll be drowning in zucchini by the time the 6 I actually planted start producing!

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#4 of 35 Old 07-06-2011, 12:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We were on vacation for the last week. I got home yesterday to see that my garden has exploded! I have now figured out that the 7 volunteer plants I let go have turned out to be 1 pumpkin and 6 zucchini. There are about 5 tomatillo plants that have popped up as well. The veggies I actually planted are slowly coming along.

We're getting a small amount of peas, snow peas, banana peppers and raspberries. I also harvested 10 pounds of zucchini from the volunteer plants yesterday. I'll be drowning in zucchini by the time the 6 I actually planted start producing!


I can't wait to be able to shred and freeze zucchini for making zucchini bread in the winter. thumb.gif

 


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#5 of 35 Old 07-09-2011, 04:47 AM
 
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Someone is nibbling my tomatoes *right* before they get ripe. I'm going to have to start pulling them early if this keeps happening. :(


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#6 of 35 Old 07-10-2011, 06:47 AM
 
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OH HAPPY DAYS!!!

 

261216_10100445197372748_5717300_56202293_1210280_n.jpg

 

 

These are poblanos. I'm excited about chile rellenos soon!: 

 

263688_10100445198335818_5717300_56202314_8062148_n.jpg  268314_10100445202352768_5717300_56202375_740194_n.jpg  268160_10100445197043408_5717300_56202282_4987890_n.jpg

 

 

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#7 of 35 Old 07-10-2011, 05:29 PM
 
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As promised- it is July- and my garden has piddled out. I have pulled out all my tomato plants- it's too hot for them to produce anymore, and the ones that are ripening on the vines, are damaged by the dreaded leaf-footed bug.  BUT- we made many many jars of pickles, salsa, and pickled peppers. The boys sold a bunch on the corner, making well over $200!

I have watermelon, cantaloupe, okra, and peppers going now. Starting seeds for tomatoes and peppers for the Fall garden.


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#8 of 35 Old 07-10-2011, 06:14 PM
 
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I only got the veggies in the ground maybe two weeks ago.  I have three tomatoes (one heirloom, 1 roma and one yellow cherry) 2 peppers, watermelon and zucchini and sweet potatoes.  Our grapevines are filled but covered in japanese beetles .  We got a few blueberries, a handful of strawberries, two blackberries and the kids LOVED mulberries from our weeping m.b. bush.   The peaches are looking so good, I can't wait until they ripen.  And this is all in our townhouse backyard, thankfully we have a corner unit.


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#9 of 35 Old 07-11-2011, 10:32 AM
 
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We went away for the weekend and came back to a garden that needed a lot of attention.

I found 2 hornworms on my tomatoes this morning. A few of the tomato plants have baby tomatoes on them already and others aren't even flowering yet. I also harvested 110 pounds of zucchini today. bigeyes.gif That's more than I got all of last year! This was all from the volunteer plants that came up. I'll be pulling those out of the garden tomorrow because the ones I started from seed are almost ready to produce.


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#10 of 35 Old 07-11-2011, 11:54 AM
 
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What will you do with all of that zucchini?


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#11 of 35 Old 07-11-2011, 02:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by abiyhayil View Post

What will you do with all of that zucchini?


I have no idea. I had to take a picture of it before I start shredding and hacking into them. 500

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#12 of 35 Old 07-12-2011, 11:07 AM
 
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Wow, what a haul!!! Thanks for sharing the picture!

 

Here's what I've loved this year so far: 

 

Zucchini pasta (raw zucchini sliced via mandolin, avoiding seeds, tossed with shallots and herbs and salts, frdge and toss in own juices. SO YUMMY.)

Zucchini fritters (a crowd pleaser. mix shredded with a bid of panko and egg, deep-fry.)

Zucchini muffins (too much sugar, but the applesauce version we'll try next, and they freeze well!)

Zucchini custard (you could go with half the recommended sugar, but this was SO YUMMY: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Aunt-Marians-Summer-Squash-Custard-Pie-361910)

 

Next up: zucchini chips made in the dehydrator to try for a replacement for corn chips. We have a lot of salsa to plow through!

 

I'd be happy to hear others' suggestions. I'm swimming in zucchs and crooknecks. Tomatoes are just starting to really come in, and the salsa has been great so far. I have a couple varieties that taste completely different from each other. It's awesome. 


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#13 of 35 Old 07-13-2011, 08:12 AM
 
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When I work with zucchinis that big I scoop out the seeds.  The center at that point is always mushy.   If you use sugar at your house you can sprinkle grated zucchini with a few Tbsps then squeeze the liquid out after 10 minutes.  I bet it would freeze well at that point (?).

 

My friend makes awesome baked zucchini cheese "fritters" with fat grated zucchini, cheese, etc. plus an egg batter to bind then baked.  Mmmmmmm.....


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#14 of 35 Old 07-13-2011, 08:27 AM
 
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I made some sweet zucchini relish with a few of them. I sent DH to work with about 50 pounds of them and he managed to give them all away. Another 50 pounds or so went to our local farm market store where they'll be donated to a womens shelter if they don't sell. The rest will be used by us. I also pulled the last 3 plants this morning so we'll have a couple week break from zucchini.

My DH had a guy approach him at work and ask about tomatoes and cucumber. DH told him that we generally don't give those away because the entire family likes them. The coworker offered to trade tomatoes and cucumbers for some venison sausage. We're pretty happy about that because we only have one ring of sausage left in the freezer and we love it!

It would really be nice for the rest of the garden to start producing something...

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#15 of 35 Old 07-13-2011, 06:29 PM
 
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Yum, thanks for sharing, I'll have to google recipes!


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#16 of 35 Old 07-14-2011, 11:14 AM
 
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My family is picky about zucchini (well, veggies in general, but zucchini in particular), but someone else mentioned dehydrated zucchini chips, and those they will eat like they are going out of style! Seriously, my husband and kids can finish off a whole dehydrator full in a couple days - it is terrific!

 

This won't work for zucchini the size you have on your kitchen counter, but if you pick them very small, kousa mahshi (stuffed zucchini). I use my MIL's recipe, but this one is pretty close. Her recipe uses ground beef (about 1/2 pound for a recipe this size) - just kind of knead the thawed ground beef into the rice to make kind of a paste, really: http://www.food.com/recipe/kousa-mahshi-stuffed-marrows-224937.

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#17 of 35 Old 07-14-2011, 11:25 AM
 
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As for my garden this month:

 

Fruit:

  • Strawberries just finished at the beginning of the month. This was our best strawberry year yet! The kids didn't even mind that the chipmunks got quite a few - there were plenty of berries to go around.
  • Black currants are ripe now, but no one in my house likes them. :( I may try making juice from them again, sweetening it, and mixing it with setzer water to entice the family to drink it. We'll see. Anyone have great recipes for black currants?
  • Unfortunately, the red currants (which everyone likes) are not going to fruit this year (I moved the shrub and it is recovering well, but did not fruit) and the service berries (which everyone also likes) must have ripened while we were out of town last weekend, and something ate them all.
  • Elderflowers are just ending now, but we did make elderflower pancakes and they were delicious! There will still be plenty of berries next month

 

Veggies:

  • Snap peas are just finishing up - I'm planning to pull the vines tonight and replace them with some short-season cukes and green beans
  • Last head of broccoli from the spring crop is finally ready - I'm planning to pick that tonight, too.
  • What I thought would be too many onions are really just enough - we've used about half of what I planted already as green onions, and aren't likely to have any to store left. That's OK, though - we're enjoying them green
  • We've gotten 3 lovely eggplants, a few nice banana peppers and the zucchini are starting to come.
  • I've got some nice green tomatoes on the vine right now - I'm debating whether to fry them up or let them ripen. I think fried green tomatoes will probably win out. ;)

 

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#18 of 35 Old 07-15-2011, 06:35 AM
 
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Sounds like youv'e got a lot of great stuff going on. I'm starting to think it's time for me to stake out an area for fruit bushes. Oh, and dry the black currents and make scones! MMMmmm scones make me HAPPY. Must be done with sour milk though.

 

Can you tell me your process for making zucchini chips? Mine never fully dried after two and a half days of the dehydrator running. Maybe it was not warm enough? I guess I should put them back in and keep going. Also, how do you season yours?


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#19 of 35 Old 07-15-2011, 09:20 AM
 
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Rosie - That does seem like a long time for them to be in the dehydrator without drying! I wonder, how thick did you slice them? I think the trick is to slice them really thin - like 1/4 inch or thinner. Then I soak the slices in salt water (1 T salt, dissolved in a cup or two of water). After they've had a good long soak (several hours), I sprinkle them with seasonings (whatever sounds good - I think I used a few tablespoons of oregano and cayenne pepper last year), then put them in the dehydrator. In my dehydrator, it takes a full day to dry.

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#20 of 35 Old 07-15-2011, 11:19 AM
 
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I used a recipe that said half inch slices. I'll try quarterinch plus a soak. Thanks!

Of course, I already used up all my baseball bat size zucchini, so I'll have to wait to get more chip-suitable fruit.

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#21 of 35 Old 07-15-2011, 12:44 PM
 
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Of course, I already used up all my baseball bat size zucchini, so I'll have to wait to get more chip-suitable fruit.

I can give you a couple. winky.gif

Actually, I'm pretty good on zucchini right now. All the ones that went to the market ended up selling and I'm taking another box in today. That leaves me with 5 giant ones and about 10 that are 4" or smaller.

I'm definitely going to try out the zucchini chip recipe too.

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#22 of 35 Old 07-20-2011, 01:05 PM
 
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How are your gardens handling this heat?

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#23 of 35 Old 07-20-2011, 04:49 PM
 
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I'm losing the battle with my tomatoes. They've got mites, which always happens, and I sprayed with Neem for the first time tonight. They also have a fungus that makes their middle leaves brown. I confirmed early blight earlier, but we got through that, and I'm not sure if this is a recurrence (we did have a couple cooler nights) or something else. Nonetheless, I'm getting large, tasty fruit. I have to pick them a day earlier that I would like due to rabbits, but I'm not complaining about that too much. Haven't seen a rabbit since the dogs half-killed one last week. 
 

Our peppers, pumpkins, new cabbage seedlings, new lettuce seedlings, kale, broccoli, carrots, new beet seedlings, and all the herbs (minus cilantro!) are doing splendidly. My green onions are getting bigger than they should. Should I just leave then in the ground to see what happens?

 

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Originally Posted by Owen'nZoe View Post

Rosie - That does seem like a long time for them to be in the dehydrator without drying! I wonder, how thick did you slice them? I think the trick is to slice them really thin - like 1/4 inch or thinner. Then I soak the slices in salt water (1 T salt, dissolved in a cup or two of water). After they've had a good long soak (several hours), I sprinkle them with seasonings (whatever sounds good - I think I used a few tablespoons of oregano and cayenne pepper last year), then put them in the dehydrator. In my dehydrator, it takes a full day to dry.


 

I got a few jumbo zucchs from my mom and sliced them nice and thin with a mandolin tonight. They're in the dehydrator now, we'll see what they look like come morning. :)

 

 


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#24 of 35 Old 07-21-2011, 03:54 AM
 
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http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/load/harvest/msg1015493630910.html

 

That's an awesome thread with a TON of ideas for what to do with zucchini and squash.

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#25 of 35 Old 07-21-2011, 12:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RosieL View Post

I'm losing the battle with my tomatoes. They've got mites, which always happens, and I sprayed with Neem for the first time tonight. They also have a fungus that makes their middle leaves brown. I confirmed early blight earlier, but we got through that, and I'm not sure if this is a recurrence (we did have a couple cooler nights) or something else. Nonetheless, I'm getting large, tasty fruit. I have to pick them a day earlier that I would like due to rabbits, but I'm not complaining about that too much. Haven't seen a rabbit since the dogs half-killed one last week. 
 

Our peppers, pumpkins, new cabbage seedlings, new lettuce seedlings, kale, broccoli, carrots, new beet seedlings, and all the herbs (minus cilantro!) are doing splendidly. My green onions are getting bigger than they should. Should I just leave then in the ground to see what happens?

 


 

I got a few jumbo zucchs from my mom and sliced them nice and thin with a mandolin tonight. They're in the dehydrator now, we'll see what they look like come morning. :)

 

 


Did the zucch chips work out? I hope so! I'm still waiting to have enough zucchini to dry some this year. Hopefully soon! As for the green onions - are you only interested in using them as green onions? If you leave them in, they'll just start bulbing up pretty quickly and the tops will start to turn brown. At that point, you'd just leave them in the ground until the tops are totally brown, and then dig them to use as storage onions. I just pull them and use them green as needed until the tops start looking unappealing, and then leave the rest in the ground until the tops are brown.

 

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#26 of 35 Old 07-22-2011, 05:40 AM
 
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My garden is growing despite being neglected. ;) It's been too hot this past week to do much out there and the weeds and grass are taking over in some areas. Zone 4 here plus I planted late. I harvested 2 cucumbers yesterday, the tomatoes are starting to grow and it looks like the zucchini is getting ready to produce even though the plants themselves look so puny. I think it would all grow so much better if it would rain. I keep holding out hope. Otherwise, I will have to carry water by the bucketful as we don't have a hose installed yet.... and the garden is a good walk from the house. It actually rained last night, but I don't think it was enough. :( Pictures


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#27 of 35 Old 07-22-2011, 12:03 PM
 
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The zucchini chips were awesome! The flavor concentration was not something I was expecting. The salt soak gave them a great amount of flavor, and they were surprisingly sweet. I would cut them thicker next time (3/8 in?) so I can try using them as tortilla chip replacements, and just deal with the very long dehydration time. I have my dunce cap on...I thought the dehyrator times were in minutes, not hours. So there's a 30-hour setting I'll use next time. :) (It's a borrowed machine)

 

The green onions I just never got to using, since my shallots are always on hand in the house. So they'll all just go for storing onions. I planted them on a lark in a bed with a tad less than full sun, so never expected much. We'll see how the bulbs grow.

 

I planted lettuce and beet seeds recently, and I'm guessing they hate this heat. Hopefully they pull through. I think my summer squashes are just about done and my tomatoes are limping along. The fruit tastes wonderful.

 

I had a chest freezer delivered today! They propped open a storm door and brought it in the back. When they were going to fix the door I realized there were wasps swarming around...and then left through the front. I admit I neglected to do anything about the wasps living inside my storm door this summer, but they never bothered me, and I never seemed to bother them. Well, until I confused them by propping open the door. There were eight of them swarming where they thought their home should be. I went out to the shed to get the wasp killer and imagine my surprise when I got stung, yards and yards away from the other swarm! I found out that there was a nest *right* above the shed doors. Ugh! I sprayed the heck out of the nest (I know, not advisable), which killed those guys, then went to work at the swarm by the door. I felt like I was an anti-aircraft gun shooting down enemy 'copters...I'd spray these guys and if I got 'em good enough, they'd drop to the deck. 

 

Not a fun afternoon, but I feel like I got rid of the danger. I'm having twin seven month olds over for the weekend, we can't have wasp swarms around!


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#28 of 35 Old 07-23-2011, 08:46 AM
 
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 I haven't been out to my garden in over a week so I'm not sure what to expect today.  Last week I had 10 cucs about ready and tomatoes just starting to turn red.  Still lots of radishes and green onions to be picked.  I think the peas are flowering but not quite ready.

 

Corn, squash, and beans are all growing so slow due to the cool, damp summer we are having. 

 

Today I need to play find my leeks.  Last year I picked them all with the weeds, this year I have left them and hope they are taller than the weeds so I can see them.  Kolrahbi and beets are doing fine. Swiss chard and greek salad for dinner tonight....with bbq fresh salmon, now if only the sun would shine.( I'd even settle for the rain to stay away)

 

Definately want to try the zucchini chips, my dd2 will love that!

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#29 of 35 Old 07-26-2011, 04:19 PM
 
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Good luck finding all the leeks, I hope your harvest is great tonight.

 

I have to share my photos from tonight. Not food, but pollinators!

 

 

 

216665_10100460810319278_5717300_56495656_2705940_n.jpg

 

 

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Married to my favorite man in '07. Our firstborn came along in April 2012 (HBC), and our second is on the way, due sometime in May 2014 (planning an HBAC).
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#30 of 35 Old 07-27-2011, 05:36 AM
 
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Beautiful! I love the first pic! 

 

In my garden, the biggest news is that it finally rained. We were LONG overdue. 


Blogging about renovations in our first home
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