Sunday, June 22, 2008

Catching up

I seem to be in my usual summer work mode. I usually get up about 7:30. I work on the computer a bit and eat breakfast. I'm out the door and working in the gardens by about 9:00. And I stay there until dark, which is about 10:00 p.m. I take a break in the heat of the day to float in my pool and read, and I generally remember to eat lunch. But my garden chores are never done. Honestly. I've never come in the house at night and thought, "Well, that should do it."

Now that my vegetable gardens are planted, weeds have invaded the early beds. And the woods weeds are trying to take over my flower beds. So I have been armed with a weed whacker, a shovel, a hoe, pruners, a claw tool and a machete for my daily tending rituals. Soon I'll get out the chain saw.

Of course, harvesting my crops makes it worth all the work! I think I'll start a new photo feature called "What's Ripe Today." Here's my first installment:

Life is just a bowl of cherries! I have picked many, many bowls of cherries in the last few days. Fortunately, I am a contortionist and have near super human powers to climb, stretch and balance. And I have a very attractive climbing outfit. I put a gallon ziplock bag inside an old fanny pack (which I wear with the pouch in front) and I have a couple of plastic grocery bags attached to the belt on either side of the pouch. Then I perform feats of daring and return to the ground with overflowing bags of cherries and very sticky fingers.

I've picked a few of my black currants. More to come! They make a great jelly, but they're pretty sour right off the bush. I mix them with other berries to add a beautiful tint to jam.

The gooseberries are just starting to pink up. Some prefer green, I like mine ripe.

This is my largest cucumber. I've named him "Gerkin." I predict he'll be salad fare by mid-week.

My first zucchini! It's the light green variety, with a bulbous end. I might even eat his blossom.

And here are some honorable mentions:

Not nearly ripe, and three months behind schedule, my second planting of potatoes has sprouted! The first plantings were under water too long. So I dug a new bed in an area with better drainage. Looks like it was a good move.

These are black raspberries. I've eaten exactly four, so far. As you can see, there will be more!

I have 128 varieties of daylilies that offer blooms all summer long. This is one of my favorites.

Yes, I even baked something this week. This is my peach bluberry cobbler, before it went into the oven. Turned out great!

I also tried Carrie's soft sandwich bread. YOU SHOULD TOO! Although my loaf fell in the middle, I'm eating it anyway. (No fault with the recipe. I had to leave out and sub a few ingredients.) The texture is fabulous! It is SOFT and tasty. Now that I've figured out how to make my own mayonnaise, I'm really happy to have a great sandwich bread. I thoroughly enjoyed my odd-looking chicken salad sandwich. I've got some homemade sweet pickles resting in brine. They should be ready in about a week. Then I'm making ham salad.

Happy Summer Solstice! I hope you're enjoying foods from your own gardens, or great finds at the farmers markets.


Vittoria said...

Those raspberries look SO good. I mis having a berry patch, or even a garden here in NYC. But I'll get to visit my mom's next week.

Cheryl Harris said...

what gorgeous plants you have! and you're a great photographer, too. thanks much for giving us a peek into your garden!

Gluten Free Steve said...

What a great looking garden. Makes me crave fresh fruits and veggies.

Gluten free Kay said...

It's now Tuesday night. The cherries have become preserves. I juiced the raspberries and black currants and made jelly. Y'all stop by any time for primo PB&Js!

nora said...

Kay, you're pictures and growing are LOVELY! :)

I'm comng over for raspberries! :)

Ginger Carter Miller, Ph.D. said...

Hi Kay - I like your blog a lot -- would it be OK to add it to my links?
P.S. The Roben I wrote about is not the same Roben you mentioned --I don't think, at least.

Gluten free Kay said...

Thanks, Ginger! Sure you can add a link. I'll add you to my blog as well.