Saturday, August 22, 2015

Garden Produce

The banana circles and edible yard today

We've been enjoying some of the fruits of our labor from the garden recently, as well as storing it for future use. We've harvested loads of yard long beans and most are in the freezer awaiting use at a later date.  Despite another onslaught of pickle worms, I've managed to gather 20 butternut squash and there are still more on the vines.  I've been fighting these awful worms with BT applications and by the tedious process of squishing them by hand.  Disgusting, but effective and a bit satisfying with how destructive these things can be and remembering how much we lost from our crops last year because of those worms. Next year I'll try to figure out a way I can put up insect fabric to cover the plants at night as that's when the moths lay their eggs that result in so many problems.

Fifteen of our butternut squash
More squash almost ready to pick

I've planted a number of plants this year in order to produce seed for future crops seeing that I had limited seed and much of it was getting old so only some of what I planted proved viable and actually produced.  Still, it was enough to resupply me for future plantings.  This includes my giant golden amaranth and calypso beans.
Girls shelling dried yard long beans for future planting

Some of the calypso beans harvested I'll use for seed

Calypso beans growing
Golden giant amaranth growing.  This stands about 6 feet tall right now.

We've enjoyed 3 of our pineapples so far and though they were small they were so sweet and delicious.  We still have many on the plants in varying stages of growth so these are still something to look forward to.  With each pineapple we eat, I take the top and replant for future produce.

Our first pineapples that were so good!!

I purchased 2 year old asparagus root stock this year and have set them in a bed that they will be allowed to grow in hopefully for years since asparagus can be so long lived.  They've taken off and produced huge fern like foliage that I will leave this year cutting in the Fall once they've yellowed so that the root stock will be strengthened and grow more vigorously next year when I can harvest some of the asparagus for eating.

Asparagus look a bit wild right now, but will eventually produce wonderful results that we're looking forward to eating.

More papayas growing

My tomatillos have really been producing and I picked the first of my loofah squash that I used in place of zucchini for making my zucchini brownies.  Loofah is wonderful for eating provided you pick it when it's still smaller and green.  Otherwise it gets very tough and fibrous and is best used for the loofah sponges you find in stores.

Just some of the MANY tomatillos we've picked this year.  These still have their outer casings on them.
A squash picked to day along with the loofah squash

My first peanuts accidentally pulled up when I pulled some dead lemon balm out- looking forward to harvesting these plants to see what my results are as this is the first time I've grown  these.

More of our yard long beans harvested today

Lima beans growing

Banana circles today, and the golden giant amaranth on the right. You can see all the sweet potatoes growing along with squash around the banana circles.