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Weekly Gardening Thread 2011 (Vol. 33) August 26
Free Republic | 8-26-2011 | Red_Devil 232

Posted on 08/26/2011 10:14:53 AM PDT by Red_Devil 232

Good afternoon gardeners. I hope all of you in the path of Irene heed the warnings and please stay safe! Not much gong on garden wise here in East Central Mississippi. I am just waiting to see how a few paste tomatoes do. And while I am waiting I decided to use some of my pears to make preserves. I am using the recipe I posted on last weeks thread, which calls for a little activity and a lot of waiting. I will be doing the final canning step this morning. This recipe may be way to sweet for my taste. So with all this waiting time I had, I needed to fill the time some how so I ordered a Beer making kit, which I understand includes a lot of waiting also. Now I am just waiting for FR to come back up so I can post this week’s thread. I have been doing a lot of waiting and it is tiring.

If you are a gardener or you are just starting out and are in need of advice or just encouragement please feel free to join in and enjoy the friendly discussion. Our Freeper community is full of gardeners, each with varying interests and skill levels from Master Gardener to novice.

I hope all your gardens are flourishing.


TOPICS: Agriculture; Food; Gardening; Hobbies
KEYWORDS: garden; gardening; recipes; weekly
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Weekly Gardening Thread

gardeningtools_Full-1.jpg picture by wjb123


1 posted on 08/26/2011 10:14:57 AM PDT by Red_Devil 232
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To: Diana in Wisconsin; gardengirl; girlangler; SunkenCiv; HungarianGypsy; Gabz; billhilly; Alkhin; ...
Ping to the Weekly Gardening Ping List.

I hope all of you will stop by.

This is typically a low volume ping list. Once a week for the thread and every once in a while for other FR threads posted that might be of interest.

If you would like to be added to or removed from the list please let me know by FreepMail or by posting to me.

2 posted on 08/26/2011 10:16:23 AM PDT by Red_Devil 232 (VietVet - USMC All Ready On The Right? All Ready On The Left? All Ready On The Firing Line!)
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To: Red_Devil 232

In central NJ we are battening down the hatches, so to speak.


3 posted on 08/26/2011 10:27:51 AM PDT by algernonpj (He who pays the piper . . .)
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To: Red_Devil 232

Zucchini and yellow squash are really producing. Tomatoes have produced nothing yet. Ready to start digging up some potatoes too.


4 posted on 08/26/2011 10:29:53 AM PDT by MtnClimber (A government powerful enough to tell you what to eat can tell you when you can breathe.)
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To: algernonpj

I ordered some Datil pepper seeds. Hopefully they will show up soon enough for me to germinate a couple and keep them indoors over the winter so they will have a healthy start for next spring when the warm weather returns. We are in Gerogia, which never gets hit by hurricanes, so good look to those not as lucky as we are. My sister lives in Virginia Beach and they are preparing for the worst.


5 posted on 08/26/2011 10:31:19 AM PDT by Oshkalaboomboom
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To: Red_Devil 232

Harvested eggplant a Pablanos this week. Getting beds ready for fall/winter crops. Need rain.


6 posted on 08/26/2011 10:31:19 AM PDT by John 3_19-21
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To: Red_Devil 232

My Brussels sprouts are finally forming up. Thanks to those who answered ny question about them a few weeks ago.

Of course, now they’ll have to deal with Irene passing over!!

Off to pick as much as I can. I planted purple green beans and they sure do produce!! Too bad most of my harvest has been blanched and frozen. Have all coolers ready to go & will be getting ice tomorrow, just in case we lose power.


7 posted on 08/26/2011 10:31:32 AM PDT by KosmicKitty (WARNING: Hormonally crazed woman ahead!!)
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To: Red_Devil 232
We the canning of the pear preserves is now complete - it is a little looser than I would like so it is now officially an "English Style" preserve to be used on ice cream and pancakes. It has a beautiful pinkish orange color that I was not expecting.

My 5.5 lbs of fruit became 2 lbs of fruit after pealing and coring and cutting and a few of the pears were just to ripe to can and were eaten.

Photobucket

8 posted on 08/26/2011 10:32:26 AM PDT by Red_Devil 232 (VietVet - USMC All Ready On The Right? All Ready On The Left? All Ready On The Firing Line!)
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To: Red_Devil 232; All

Thanks for the thread RD. I have been checking in all morning to see if we were back up and running. Not a lot going on here either.

With the break from the heat the tomatoes and melons have new flowers and some fruit starting. Green beans are flowering again.

Hubby’s grapes have been ripening. Yesterday morning the boards laying on the netting was disturbed, and all the grapes halfway up were gone. So he picked the rest. Got about 3 gallons. He has baited a trap hoping to catch the critter.

About 2 months ago, I had ordered some seeds and plants that were on sale, and they sent me a card saying it would all ship next spring. Most of it arrived yesterday instead.

It included some red potato starts. Will just barely have time to mature before first frost. Guess I’ll try it, and may be put some in containers that I can drag into the house if I need to.

Other stuff was stevia, and hardy kiwi. Seeds will be great for my winter garden, and next springs indoor seedlings.

Have a great weekend. God Bless.


9 posted on 08/26/2011 10:33:17 AM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Red_Devil 232
Everybody in New England bitching about green tomatoes...they certainly have taken their time turning, but now mine are really cranking up the color...I find more to pick every time I go out. Really impressed with Amish Gold tomatoes...shape and consistency of Amish Paste combined with flavor of Sungold...nom-alicious!

Eye of Irene passing close by on Sunday night...hoping it spends a lot of time over land before it gets here, or my 12-foot corn is doomed. My tomatoes are tied up on cattle panels, so they MAY make it...

10 posted on 08/26/2011 10:35:59 AM PDT by who knows what evil? (G-d saved more animals than people on the ark...www.siameserescue.org.)
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To: Red_Devil 232

Waiting for FR to come back up was VERY tiring......especially while also awaiting a visit from that huge witch in the Atlantic.


11 posted on 08/26/2011 10:37:08 AM PDT by Gabz (Democrats for Voldemort.)
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To: Red_Devil 232
Hot an dry here in Texas, with temps expected to be close to 110 this weekend. We missed triple digits yesterday, but will have another full week of 100+ temps.


12 posted on 08/26/2011 10:38:41 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Dear God, please let it rain in Texas. Amen.)
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To: Gabz

Are you planning on Evac?


13 posted on 08/26/2011 10:38:41 AM PDT by Red_Devil 232 (VietVet - USMC All Ready On The Right? All Ready On The Left? All Ready On The Firing Line!)
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To: MtnClimber

Our tomatoes have suddenly taken off here in north Idaho. We planted some heirlooms and they are all chock full...


14 posted on 08/26/2011 10:40:32 AM PDT by illiac (If we don't change directions soon, we'll get where we're going)
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To: algernonpj

Here in coastal VA, we’re doing the same thing.


15 posted on 08/26/2011 10:41:41 AM PDT by Gabz (Democrats for Voldemort.)
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To: Arrowhead1952

Wow the whole state of Texas is experiencing sever drought!


16 posted on 08/26/2011 10:44:22 AM PDT by Red_Devil 232 (VietVet - USMC All Ready On The Right? All Ready On The Left? All Ready On The Firing Line!)
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To: Red_Devil 232; MtnClimber

It’s a good thing I have “Remember in Benderville when”... on Face Book to occupy my mind when when FR is down...


17 posted on 08/26/2011 10:47:31 AM PDT by tubebender (The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some very good ideas)
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To: Red_Devil 232

I noticed Costco had Pears $5.00 per flat for those that don’t access to Red’s orchard...


18 posted on 08/26/2011 10:50:35 AM PDT by tubebender (The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some very good ideas)
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To: Red_Devil 232

There were a few showers in N & E Texas this week on Wed & yesterday, so it may not be quite that bad. The map reflects the conditions on Aug 23, but with the heat this weekend, that moisture will be gone.


19 posted on 08/26/2011 10:51:06 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Dear God, please let it rain in Texas. Amen.)
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To: Red_Devil 232

No, we’re staying put. We were supposed to spend the weekend in Delaware, but the visitor is going there as well.

We can’t even go to the Hurricane party being held on Chincoteague right now because they are only letting residents onto the Island and all visitors have to be off Island by 6pm.

The Chesapeake Bay coastal evacuation zone ends 1/10 of a mile west of my property. Unlike my friends to the north of me, we have had no rain and so I’m not worried about over saturated ground.


20 posted on 08/26/2011 10:52:40 AM PDT by Gabz (Democrats for Voldemort.)
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To: Red_Devil 232

Eeeviiil squash bugs are sucking the life-blood out of my acron squash and pumpkins ... just like Ovomitnomic bugs suck the life-blood out of our economy.


21 posted on 08/26/2011 10:53:08 AM PDT by taxcutisapayraise (Making Statism Unpopular)
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To: tubebender

He He! My orchard is one tree producing and one that just grows leaves.


22 posted on 08/26/2011 10:53:11 AM PDT by Red_Devil 232 (VietVet - USMC All Ready On The Right? All Ready On The Left? All Ready On The Firing Line!)
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To: taxcutisapayraise

yeah, I have had a great growing summer here too. Excessive heat and humidity to the point that most plants quit, to a huge bumper crop of green tomato caterpillars that was the final blow.

I trimmed all the dead leaves/branches from any surviving tomato plants, killed the green demons, and am hoping that with a late frost, the plants may give me something later.


23 posted on 08/26/2011 10:58:13 AM PDT by roofgoat
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To: taxcutisapayraise

Get some hot peppers and put them in the blender with some water. Either strain that through a coffee filter and put it in a spray bottle and spray in on the squash and pumpin or just pour it over the squash making sure to wet the entire thing.


24 posted on 08/26/2011 11:02:17 AM PDT by CynicalBear
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To: Arrowhead1952

Looks like those of us on the east coast could send you some rain. Right now, if we could we’d be glad to.


25 posted on 08/26/2011 11:02:47 AM PDT by algernonpj (He who pays the piper . . .)
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To: Red_Devil 232

I see this thread and just want to cry! I live in Texas and my garden is dead. DEAD, I tell you!!!


26 posted on 08/26/2011 11:05:14 AM PDT by PROTESTBYPROXY (Today I am a terrorist!)
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To: Red_Devil 232; All

Yellow cucumbers! We planted some old seeds (envelope said “Cucumbers 1999”) and they went to town growing and sending seeker vines everywhere at the free for all end of the garden! I harvested a bag full of these yellow beauties and they are just sweeter than honey. Juicy too!

I have never heard of, or seen yellow cukes before! Anyone know what they might be?


27 posted on 08/26/2011 11:09:29 AM PDT by JDoutrider
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To: Red_Devil 232

Irene just passed through our area, with minimal damage to the garden.

Prayers up for my Northern Neighbors!


28 posted on 08/26/2011 11:11:34 AM PDT by left that other site (Psalm 122:6)
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To: PROTESTBYPROXY
I live in Texas and my garden is dead. DEAD, I tell you!!!

How's it doing other than that? Put down the gun...I was just kidding...

29 posted on 08/26/2011 11:17:23 AM PDT by tubebender (The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some very good ideas)
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To: algernonpj

There were a few showers the past two afternoons in N & E Texas, but we hardly got more than the smell of rain in Austin.


30 posted on 08/26/2011 11:20:35 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Dear God, please let it rain in Texas. Amen.)
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To: PROTESTBYPROXY
I live in Texas and my garden is dead. DEAD, I tell you!!!

Same here. If it doesn't rain soon, some reservoirs and small lakes will be dry too.

31 posted on 08/26/2011 11:22:34 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Dear God, please let it rain in Texas. Amen.)
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To: MtnClimber

Zukes and yellow squash doing well in my garden. Last night I canned a batch of onion,garlic, yellow squash, zucchini, tomato, and Italian spices. I sliced and heated thoroughly, then pressure canned it. I wasn’t sure how long, so basing it on a soup recipe, I let it go for 1 hour for pint jars. I’m wondering if it was too long. I’m new to canning and couldn’t quite figure out how long to cook it. Any suggestions for next time?


32 posted on 08/26/2011 11:29:28 AM PDT by Marmolade
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To: Red_Devil 232

That looks yummy.


33 posted on 08/26/2011 11:35:13 AM PDT by Ratman83
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To: Red_Devil 232

My only remaining morning glory which just put out the first purple trumpet, died later in the day probably due to rabbit predation.

My four foot tall gone to seed leaf lettuce plant is now ready for seed harvest.

Squirrels have left me five European plums, which I picked before they disappeared. I failed to net the tree.

My netted apple tree suffered from bad buds in the spring. Very late very wet very cold. I have three apples under the net still attached to limbs.

Four ash trees began to exhibit extreme stress all at the same time. A crash program of water stick, below ground watering was begun and they appear much improved. Other than that gardening is over for the year.


34 posted on 08/26/2011 11:36:07 AM PDT by wita
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To: taxcutisapayraise

Yeah but you can nail the squash bugs by going to the garden store- the other mess is going to take some real effort to even marginally succeed.

Does your extension office have information on how to avoid squash bugs next year? If you go to the University of Nebraska NebGuides, they have one that is good.


35 posted on 08/26/2011 11:45:50 AM PDT by handmade
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To: Red_Devil 232
Spinach, barley, wheat, pea, and lentil seeds for next year are cleaned and stored; beans are starting to get dry on the vines.

Summer squash are coming along to the tune of friends & neighbors getting tired of being recipients, though the food bank is happy for all we take in.

The "squashkins" are coming along fine, starting to ripen, as are the melons. Almost time for another batch of pickles, too.

Peppers and tomatoes are beginning to ripen decently finally. Last of the garlic was harvested this week.

Starting to get the ground ready for a winter wheat crop in about a fourth or so of the garden. That gets planted around mid September.

The okra transplanted in June is now a whopping 8-10 INCHES tall! :-(

The late planting of carrots was a bust: the straw over the seed smothered the emerging seedlings if I left it in place; but they burned up (temps, with drying winds to make it worse, have hit up to 106) if I partially removed it.

The new strawberries planted in May did establish well, and should produce well next year. They seem to love the acid mulch made chiefly of pine cones run through the chipper/shredder.

Not the best year by any means, but far from the worst.

A farmer is NEVER happy: if it doesn't rain, bad; if it rains too much or at the wrong time, bad; if it freezes too early, or get a late frost, bad; if it's too hot, bad; if it's too cool, bad; if it's just right he gets a bumper crop, but the bottom falls out of the market: HORRIBLE! *<];-')

Oh, yeah; last weekend, ONE DAY before the "guest cows" were scheduled by their owner to be moved off our property to a neighbor's, they forced the front gate open by bending (YOU HEAR THAT, TUBEBENDER?) the cyclone fence stirrup-latch 45 degrees, and twisting it badly, as well. Trampled down all of the iris, (it'll come back fine, but...) stripped all the leaves and blooms off the sunflowers, as well as most of the bedded flowers; and broke branches off of our small elm. The yard is now a nearly barren wasteland.

Naturally, they also left deposits all over the place, too. Knocked down a couple of stacks of firewood, and chewed up (they LOVE plastic!) the tarps covering them. They also broke some of our solar lights along the walk from the gate to the house.

Never a dull moment; gotta love country life!

36 posted on 08/26/2011 11:47:18 AM PDT by ApplegateRanch ("Public service" does NOT mean servicing the people, like a bull among heifers.)
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To: PROTESTBYPROXY

If it is any consolation, most of us if not all, feel badly about the drought in Texas. A few years ago here in Nebraska we had severe to extreme drought for seven years, and that was bad. But we did not have the extreme heat through all the summers. We can have, and sometimes do have but not like Texas this year.


37 posted on 08/26/2011 11:49:26 AM PDT by handmade
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To: Arrowhead1952

OMG — I can’t imagine such heat!


38 posted on 08/26/2011 11:52:02 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: Red_Devil 232

“beer making kit”

If you need any advice let me know - my husband makes beer! Pretty darn fine stuff it is too.

He started out with barely the basics, then got hooked, and now we have lots of equipment and even a specially modified small refrigerator that holds two (soda) canisters of beer and has cool taps. He modified the thing himself, but it looks perfect - like a custom made (which technically it is). Because he’s not really a handy guy I was surprised how perfectly the thing turned out.

When he cooks the beer though-I can’t be in the house, it SMELLS, and lingers.

He also does wine. Very nice wine. We have cases of it in the cellar.


39 posted on 08/26/2011 11:54:49 AM PDT by Ladysforest
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To: Arrowhead1952; Red_Devil 232; Diana in Wisconsin; greeneyes; rightly_dividing

OMG — I can’t imagine such a drought. I’ve been complaining about drought, & I live adjacent to that yellow A on the southern border of Wisconsin. I’ll shut up now. Pray for a nice, gentle rain for TX. No flash floods.


40 posted on 08/26/2011 11:56:45 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: JDoutrider

Perhaps these?

Cucumber, Lemon
HEIRLOOM. Lemon yellow cucumbers are tender and sweet, excellent for salads and pickling.
65 days. The 3-4” round and lemon yellow cucumbers are tender and sweet, excellent for salads and pickling. Normal-sized vines yield heavily and for a long time.

http://www.burpee.com/vegetables/cucumbers/specialty-cucumbers/cucumber-lemon-prod000691.html


41 posted on 08/26/2011 11:59:29 AM PDT by ApplegateRanch ("Public service" does NOT mean servicing the people, like a bull among heifers.)
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To: Ladysforest
When he cooks the beer though-I can’t be in the house, it SMELLS, and lingers.

Weyused to know all about that in Milwaukee, but either all the breweries have gone away, or they use different equipment. I remember when you used to smell the beer downtown from the freeway. Then the next aroma was chocolate, but the chocolate factory moved away too.

42 posted on 08/26/2011 12:00:29 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: Red_Devil 232

I need to post some pics of my Black Cherry tomato plant. It is on a trellis that I made a few years back. If it was stretched out to full length it would be about 15 to 16 ft in height. So far we have gotten several pounds of tomatoes off of it and have many more to go.


43 posted on 08/26/2011 12:00:47 PM PDT by SLB (23rd Artillery Group, Republic of South Vietnam, Aug 1970 - Aug 1971.)
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To: Red_Devil 232
I got out to my land a few days ago, and I'm happy to report that, thus far, the Chia Hill Experiment looks to be a rousing success!!

Quick recap: I have a spot on my land with a serious erosion problem. “Spot” may be a misnomer, it's between 3-10 feet across, and runs horizontally almost the entire width of the property. The soil is so full of clay that the day after a rainstorm, you can stick your hand in there and make pottery. It's facing south, and when the sun shines on it, the whole side of the hill bakes to a brick-like consistency, and when it rains everything that isn't solidly rooted gets washed away.

The chia seed's husk absorbs several times it's weight in water and forms a thick, sticky mucilage. In it's native environment (the southwest desert) this allows it to stick to the sides of sandstone rocks, where it grows. This is what inspired the “chia pets” you sometimes see in the store. My idea was to use this same stickiness and drought-resistance to control the erosion on my hill. I bought 2 pounds of chia seeds from a local health-foods store, mixed it with several borderline-invasive perennials like mints and other herbs (as well as several “free with your order” seeds that I've collected but wouldn't normally use), then soaked in water until they formed a thick sludge, and slung it at the eroded spot on my hill. This was several weeks ago. Wednesday was the first chance I'd had to see how they were doing. It looks like my coverage of the hill could have been a little more even, the chia was growing in stripes and splash patterns, but it was growing!!! And, mixed in here and there, were tiny baby perennials that the chia had sheltered enough to take root. Hopefully, the perennials will spread and hold the hillside in place, now that the chia is helping them get established.

On the way back, i stopped at a little store that specializes in locally-grown food, and was astonished to find they didn't have any cucumbers or zucchinis on their shelves! I told them about my Italian zucchinnis, and they're going to talk about it and might be willing to buy some off me. My two little zucchini vines seem to have learned the reputation zucchinis have, and they're trying to make up for their slacking earlier in the season. i might also see if they'd like to buy my cucumbers, they're long and spiny, but they're also sweet and burpless. I have trouble with digesting plants, so I kind of have to ration myself, and they're producing faster than I can eat them.

44 posted on 08/26/2011 12:01:09 PM PDT by Ellendra (God feeds the birds of the air, but he doesn't throw it in their nests.)
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To: Marmolade

If you do not have- get a canning guide put out by your extension office, or buy a Ball or Kerr canning book. Did your pressure canner have any canning recipes?


45 posted on 08/26/2011 12:01:17 PM PDT by handmade
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To: Ladysforest; Red_Devil 232

How do we know it is pretty darn fine stuff, I think we should be able to test it out to make sure it is.


46 posted on 08/26/2011 12:02:50 PM PDT by Ratman83
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To: afraidfortherepublic
Today is day #71 of 100+ temps, and one weatherman has predicted this drought could last as much as 15 years. I hope not, because by then we won't have water in the lakes any more.
47 posted on 08/26/2011 12:04:48 PM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Dear God, please let it rain in Texas. Amen.)
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To: Red_Devil 232

I’ve read that some jellies and preserves take up to two weeks to set. They may turn out fine. They sure look beautiful.


48 posted on 08/26/2011 12:06:25 PM PDT by Ladysforest
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To: ApplegateRanch

gotta love country life

Goodness you need a crash course in how to butcher cows that anialate green and growing. I can’t spell the word but you get the idea.


49 posted on 08/26/2011 12:06:47 PM PDT by handmade
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To: handmade

As a matter of fact, I joked with their owner when he called to tell us he was moving them off the property that I didn’t have time to talk to him at the moment; I still had a dozen cows to finsh butchering. LOL

They pay our property taxes, and keep the pastures ‘mowed’; and he keeps the rest of the fencing repaired.


50 posted on 08/26/2011 12:12:14 PM PDT by ApplegateRanch ("Public service" does NOT mean servicing the people, like a bull among heifers.)
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