Tag Archives: eggplant

Garden, Mid-July

As I write this, C. is downstairs plunking away on his new bass and has been for at least an hour now. Since purchasing the amp, he has practiced playing everyday. It’s quite pleasant having live music in the house, I enjoy overhearing his practice sessions. πŸ™‚

Anyhoo, the real point of this post is simply to note the progress of the garden in the clutch of bullet points listed below:

  • The Paprika Supreme and the Thai Hot peppers are doing quite nicely, despite being potted in containers. Both have put forth a nice batch of peppers β€” green for now.
  • The Lemon Cucumber has a few small cucumbers on it. The plant seems a bit wee to me, but healthy enough.
  • We have now harvested a couple batches of both Zucchini and Yellow Crookneck Squash. I think that thinning down to one plant per mound was a good idea. We seem to be getting just as many squashes out of each single plant as we have out of double planted mounds in the past. The plants are healthy and green.
  • The Correnta Hybrid Spinach is a bit of a disappointment. There are maybe 8-10 spinach plants surviving out of β€” oh, gosh β€” 50 some plantings? I think the summer sun was simply to harsh for the seedlings which came up during our 100 degree heat streak a couple weeks back. I’m thinking about starting some more seedlings in peat pots and keeping them in a sheltered spot until they are strong enough to stand the full sun.
  • Both eggplants, the Black Beauty and Asian Eggplant are blooming but seem a bit small. No eggplants have made an appearance, yet.
  • The Fortex Pole Beans are growing like k-razy. They have topped the trellis and extended into the empty air another 3 feet or so, I think they would climb another six feet if we gave them a taller support. The French Climbing Beans are also showing good progress, though they are overshadowed by their surpassingly dynamic neighbor.
  • Early Cascade Tomatoes are present, but still green.
  • A second batch of lovely orange Tiger Lilies are blooming. It looks like the pink (Stargazer? Sorbonne? I’m not sure) lilies are about to bloom, too. They are more fragrant than the tiger lilies, and I am greatly looking forward to them. They are purty. πŸ™‚
  • The Yellow Banana Potato plants seem to be experiencing about a 60-75% success rate. I think they didn’t get enough water early on (the drip irrigation to the barrel in which they are planted was turned off, unbeknownst to me, but is now on again). The plants that haven’t withered and disappeared seem to be doing okay, though I’d feel more confident if they were leafier.
  • I picked what I thought was our first ripe Fig today, but it was just on the cusp. Soon, soon.

That’s really all that I’m prepared to report on. If anyone is reading this, I apologize that the “weekly report” has evolved into something more monthly, but them’s the breaks.

Weekly Garden Report

Success!
The beans emerged last weekend β€” the Fortex were followed by the Climbing French within a day. All the tomato plants are still small, but they are blooming and growing. The strawberries are still producing, but at a lesser rate than last week. Still, I had enough berries for my cereal this morning. The lettuce is still gorgeous and tasty. In honor of our lettuce crop, C and I dubbed last week The Week of Salads and managed to have dinner size salads last Sunday through Thursday. We’ve eaten two whole heads of the Romaine and now I must find some summer friendly lettuce starts or seeds to take their now empty places.

Concerns
The eggplants have a dusty, sickly look. I wish I had photographed them previously, then I would know for sure whether they have grown since they were planted. I’ll give ’em a dose of fish emulsion and hope that helps. The brussel sprouts continue to be aphidy β€” we have yet to try anything to remedy it. We have no good excuse for this.

A Recipe
Inspired by the perfectly ripe local strawberries on the market right now, and the red speckled leaves of our lettuce, I concocted a super tasty salad of my own imagining. I’ve written out the recipe below. Feel free to swap any of the ingredients, but keep in mind that the strawberries must be perfectly ripe for the recipe to achieve super tastiness.

Ms. A_’s Strawberry-Balsamic Salad

  • 1 or 2 cloves of garlic
  • 3/4 – 1 pint fresh strawberries, perfectly ripe, sliced
    Ripeness is important!
  • Balsamic Vinegar
    I used Lucini 10 year Gran Riserva Balsamico
  • Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 head of Romaine lettuce
    Forellenschuss is tasty and its maroon speckled green leaves look beautiful with strawberries
  • 1 or 2 handfuls of sunflower seeds, toasted and salted
  • 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
    We used Rogue Creamery’s “Smokey Blue
  • Coarse salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste

Rub the inside of a large salad bowl thoroughly with a halved garlic clove (my recommended first step for almost any green salad). Mince remaining garlic and add directly to the bowl. Using your own discretion regarding the amounts, add balsamic vinegar and olive oil in equal proportions directly to the bowl. I think I used about 2 tablespoons of each, but I just eyeballed it so I can’t say for certain. Add coarse salt, fresh-ground black pepper and sliced strawberries. Mix gently. Some of the strawberries will dissolve a bit, creating a strawberry vinaigrette. Wash and dry lettuce, then tear leaves into slightly larger than bite size pieces β€” we’re going for rusticity here. Toss ’em in the bowl. Add sunflower seeds and blue cheese crumbles. Toss until every leaf is well coated. Serve and enjoy!