Thursday, August 6, 2009

Our answer to the recession

The kiss of sun for pardon,
The song of birds for mirth,
One is closer to God in a garden
than anywhere else on earth.
~ Dorothy Frances Gurney

When we planted our garden, we prayed a blessing over it, then put a fence around it to keep the country critters out, then weeded and cultivated and prayed some more. God has answered in Ephesian 3:20 ways. We who usually have to struggle to maintain a garden despite the wildlife and weather and soil have an abundant harvest, exceeding our expectations.

So far I've canned
  • 14 qts. pickled beets (plus 2 qts. given away, and 1-plus qt. enjoyed fresh, with pickled eggs)
  • 7 qts. and 30 pints green beans
  • 10 pts. wax (yellow) beans

and frozen
  • 20 1-cup bags green beans (for soup & stew)
  • 12 1-cup bags mixed (green and yellow) beans
  • 15 snack bags of sweet banana pepper strips
  • 3 snack bags of green bell pepper strips
One more batch (about 7 qts.) of beets to do. I pulled the bean plants (notice bare ground on the left), but left one row of yellow beans, since they aren't done yet. I figure one more picking.

Still to harvest:
  • carrots
  • more peppers (48 plants)
  • tomatoes (48 plants), which are slow this year because of the cool, wet weather (but I usually can tomatoes in September)
  • onions
  • red potatoes
  • pumpkin
  • squash (butternut and spaghetti squash)
The tomato patch (left) looks like a forest, with the cherry tomato plants looking more like trees than plants. DH (Dear Husband) will have to trim them.

And somehow we must have gotten one hot pepper plant mixed in with the sweet banana pepper plants--I figured this out when we added a pepper to chipped steak, then had to put out the fire when we ate it. I can't tell which peppers are the hot ones, so when I slice them, I take a small bite. If it bites back, I put it aside to give to my oldest son, who, unlike DH and I, likes dishes with some kick.

Last year we enjoyed canned pears from our trees (left), but this year, the pears are few. And what we do have growing on the small tree, the deer are eating. So DH put a fence around the tree last night. But I still won't have enough pears to can. Maybe I'll buy a bushel . . .

Speaking of the pear trees, the one on the right (the bigger tree) was the recipient of an arrow, which split the tree in two, when our oldest was target shooting, getting ready for bow season. That was at least 15-20 years ago.

Where have all the flowers gone that DH planted at the woodsline behind the house? (see picture at right) Wonder no more. See why we put a fence around the pear tree and the garden? And to discourage them from jumping the fence, DH added the clothesline wire above it and I tied on about two dozen plastic grocery bags, for which I got laughed at. But, hey, it worked, didn't it?

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