September 13, 2016

Ann's Weekend Homestead Backyard Harvest

Heirloom vegetable harvest of carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes and melons.

Tante Alice & Lyaluk Cucumbers

I have to say that organic, non-GMO, heirloom seeds are fantastic!  The garden is keeping me super busy these days.  The amount of Lyaluk cucumbers is mind boggling.  I've made about 30 jars of pickles and relish and even cucumber soup.  And the cucumber plants are still producing.

I bought a proper size canning pot so I could process more jars at a time, but still it is quite a bit of work to can all those cucumbers.

There have been a load of green beans.  Some had to go straight into the freezer as I couldn't keep up with the harvesting.  The latest batches though, I've had time to blanch them before freezing.

I've also harvest many, many cherry tomatoes.  I planted way too many cherry tomatoes and some grew on their own from last years dropped tomatoes.  I much prefer picking the larger tomatoes because there's less to harvest but the cherry tomatoes are so sweet to eat as you wander around the garden.  So far I'm up to about five jars of spaghetti sauce.  The big tomatoes haven't started turning red yet.  Hopefully the weather will hold out.

A few days ago the whole family dug out the potatoes.  From the plants that grew from old potatoes from my cupboard, there where two large potatoes.  From the plants that grew from potatoes left in the ground the year before, I got three or four smaller potatoes.  We ate all the ones that weren't perfect or were speared during digging the first night.  The rest of the potatoes are curing in the bottom of a laundry basket and then I'll layer them with newspaper and keep in the dark.

I've had mixed luck with the scarlet nantes carrots.  Only about half the seeds germinated and some have multiple branches under the ground.  However they are still the biggest carrots I've ever managed to grow.  This makes them much easier to peel and prepare for steaming.  A sweeter carrot would be good too.

I've got about three muskmelons.  I picked one but it wasn't ripe yet, the taste was very light and it was crunchy with light green flesh.  I think they'll be quite good when ripened.