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City girl goes country (part 12) Abandoning the garden?

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Not exactly, but for one month we’ll be out of the country - not our rural countryside - the USA.

DH & I have been rewarded with beginners luck. A typical trip to the garden yields this

and this.

The tomatoes are just starting to turn red, but the cucumbers are prolific. If we don’t search carefully, they become HUGE. The 2 largest ones each weighed 1.5 pounds.

So nature is taking care of production and our focus now is making use of it all.
We’ve given a lot away and our daughter and neighbors will harvest while we’re gone.

Cucumber salad has been part of every meal, but what about all that squash?

We have several different varieties. One of them had skin like iron and it didn’t want to come off even with my “good” peeler. I could hardly hack it off with a knife. Finally, I chopped it into pieces and threw it into the pressure cooker. That softened it, but it still was difficult to get the skin off.

By now it was me vs. the squash. We planted it…we grew it…we picked it and I was determined to at least taste it. Imagine me attacking a vegetable while singing “To peel the unpeelable squash” along with more alternate lyrics to the tune “To dream the impossible dream.”

End of story: It had a nice taste and texture. We have also realized that if we’re going to plant several varieties of a vegetable, we should mark the rows carefully, so we know what we’ve got. Another lesson learned for next year!

Now here’s a surprise. The peppers on my GREEN pepper plant are turning RED. They taste just fine, just not what I expected to happen.

So even a beginner can be successful, with enough rain, a high fence and a little help from our friends. Thanks SparkPeople!

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
MARYJEANSL 8/5/2013 9:42PM

  I am so jealous! I don't seem to have what it takes when it comes to growing veggies. We try every year, and every year we fail. Tomatoes are my son's absolute favorites, and we never get any - while they are still green, the squirrels take huge bites from them and ruin them. But congrats to you - everything looks just delicious!

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GARDENCHRIS 8/4/2013 11:17AM

    green peppers do turn red when they are on the vine for a longer time.... they are a little sweeter.

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WILSONWR 8/3/2013 10:45AM

    You've done great! Most people don't know that the bell peppers turn ripe (red) if you let them stay on the plant. This way you can enjoy both green and red peppers!

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BOILHAM 8/2/2013 1:01PM

    You can thin slice the squash (skin on) and stir fry it, or grill it. My mouth is watering as I type this. Love grilled squash/zuchhini. Your veggies look great!!!

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OWL_20 8/2/2013 7:28AM

    Our tomatoes are hit or miss this year--too much rain for them, I think. But what we have are really good! Your squash looks great--do you have follow any recipes for them? The veggies look lovely!

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WATERMELLEN 8/1/2013 9:15PM

    Nice work -- and I'm betting you'll be very popular with those benefiting while you're away!!

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MERRYMARY42 8/1/2013 6:15PM

    good looking vegetables, not sure what kind of squash you have, but if it is butternut (they are very hard) I fork it put it in the microwave for a few minutes depending on how big, and then peel it pretty easy when it cools off, and all kinds are so tasty and good for you,
have a great month away, I know you will, and take pictures, we all enjoyed your last trip

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COLOR-BLUE 8/1/2013 5:05PM


I ROARED, when you were talking about your song!!! I wish I could've been a fly on the wall.

Your vegetables look FANTASTIC!!! My dad told me that every bell pepper starts out green, and depending on how long you leave them, depends on what color they will be. That's why they are different prices, as they have to be watched closely to get them picked at the right time. I've had green, red, yellow, and orange. Each has it's own distinct flavor. My favorite is red.

Be blessed,

- Nancy Jean -

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BELLACUDDLES 8/1/2013 1:24PM

    beautiful haul of veggies!!!

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RUNNINGAL425 8/1/2013 1:17PM

    Mmmmm.....squash....yummy! Pick it when it is smaller and don't peel it!

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WUMPASTAR 8/1/2013 11:08AM

    OMG. I'm jealous. I wish I didn't live in an apartment building so I could have my own garden. All I can grow is herbs! At least they're good haha

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BOOKAPHILE 8/1/2013 11:01AM

    Your alternate lyrics made me laugh. My Dad is always changing the lyrics of things to fit his current situation. My husband says I've inherited that trait. I like it!

Great determination to eat what you grow. My berry patch and plum tree give me so much produce at times that I have to find others to eat from them, too.

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MARGARITTM 8/1/2013 10:25AM

    Red peppers are ripe green peppers. AHA!

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CELIAMINER 8/1/2013 10:02AM

    Been off the radar for awhile, so I have some catching up to do. Congrats on that fantastic haul from your garden, and I hope the trip preparations are going smoothly.

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DR1939 8/1/2013 9:49AM

    If the thick skinned squash is a winter squash (look at pictures on the internet) you can put it in the microwave for a few minutes to soften it. I've never done it, just read about it. I have a cleaver and a thick wooden cutting board that I use to karate chop it.

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LEWILL1982 8/1/2013 9:40AM

    Looks delicious, I yearn to have a green thumb, unfortunately, mine tends to be a bit black....

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KANOE10 8/1/2013 8:54AM

    Your vegetables look great. Our squash is in but our tomatoes are still green. Isn't it fun to have fresh vegetables?

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KANDOLAKER 8/1/2013 8:40AM

    Excellent gardening!!

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SLIMMERJESSE 8/1/2013 8:37AM

    Good job!

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NANNABLACK 8/1/2013 7:32AM

    Nice. emoticon

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BLUENOSE63 8/1/2013 7:29AM

  The boys (DH and DS) make two raised cedar planters this year and planted all sorts of goodies.....Fresh beans for dinner last night....yummy! They also have an herb garden with all the favourites....dill, parsley, oregano etc.

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GINIEMIE 8/1/2013 6:53AM

    Looks yummy. I like to bake my acorn squash in the skin with a tiny bit of water in the pan. I usually cut it in half, put a chopped apple in the cavity the removed seeds made, add some chopped walnuts and a 1/2 TBS of brown sugar to each half(optional). Way to get my kids to try it, and I loved it.
Another less healthy way is to put spicy sausage in the cavity, but still put water in the baking pan.
If they rock too much shave enough off the outside of each half to have a flat bottom.
Spaghetti squash, poke with a fork and bake or microwave till softened. I have a wonderful recipe for it with black beans and tomatoes.
Nice that you harvesters to your garden.
Enjoy your trip and take lots of pictures. Learn your language, and taste the foods.
emoticon emoticon Ginie
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/1/2013 6:47AM

    Oops... it doubled, and then there's no delete for the writer... edited.

Comment edited on: 8/1/2013 6:48:38 AM

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/1/2013 6:46AM

    Gotta giggle... discovered that about peppers the first summer I was married and my hubby was a gardener. Who knew? They come from the grocery store and they usually charge more for the red ones, and the flavor is different: but they are the same plant!

Thank goodness for those who grow and share... I've got my first produce from the sharers at work this year... with any luck, they, too, are having a good growing year!

Have a tremendous time on your trip. Look forward to hearing how it went.

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DDOORN 8/1/2013 6:40AM

    Jealous! I've tried a veggie garden for a few years with not the best results and didn't even bother this year...makes me want to get back to it again!


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CBLENS 8/1/2013 6:39AM

    nice veggies.

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DMEYER4 8/1/2013 6:38AM

  veggies look great. Great job. We have had stuffed peppers from our garden and the grape tomatoes are ripening pretty fast. I love to enjoy fresh veggies from our garden. Have a great trip.

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