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 Gardening: Grow your own herbs and veggies
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/07/2014 :  11:06:57 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Judy, YES, I grew Cherokee Purple tomatoes two years so this is my third year. I am also growing Marglobe tomato, yellow pear, salsa and cherry!! Yes, variety is wonderful. Peppers are easy to grow too, so I have sweet, Hungarian wax and jalapenos galore. When is stops raining I am going to tie up my gladiolas as I have a purple one coming out!!!!! I also have to tie up the morning glories as they will start blooming any day and cut off some buds from the tomato plants so the tomatoes will ripen quicker. I am running out of time where I live!!
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Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
3047 Posts

Posted - 08/07/2014 :  6:52:02 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
yes, we rotate crops. I also plant things together that work symbiotically. The tomatoes are always surrounded by carrots. Each puts into the soil nutrients the other needs.

Jnanne
Silver certified
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/09/2014 :  06:59:39 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I see we will have an early fall so I did take a bunch of buds off the tomato plants so the ones on the plant will grow and ripen. According to the weather people we will have a frost in September.
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JudyK
Star Contributor

Eau Claire, WI. 54703-1729
USA
1349 Posts

Posted - 08/09/2014 :  2:26:11 PM  Send JudyK an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
McBarb, you must reside in the mid-west, as we generally get our first frost in September. I hate the thought of snow flying again. It seems summer is never long enough, especially when its been as nice as this year. I TRIED to tell Kurt to pick those blossoms off the tomato plants but chose not to listen. The plants here at the house are humongous with branches up to 7' long trailing in the garden and intertwining into everything. Ive been putting up pickles again today. I decided to try a different dill pickle recipe that is crispy and has a good crunch when bit into and NO sugar. I sent a quart out to my X hubby and his wife they loved them. They said to hang onto this recipe. It was the easiest pickles Ive ever made. Weve had so many cukes, I had Kurt give his buddy 3 ice cream pails full to make his favorites. A nice break for me. Our Roma's and Big Boys are now starting to ripen, just in time as I canned up the last of the stringbeans today. Im looking forward to getting the tomatoes canned and also made into salsa. Ive been freezing the green peppers as they ripen, so theyll be ready for the salsa project. When that is finished, the carrots will be ready. Weve dug up some red potatoes to store over the winter. I have leftover pvc type store display fixtures with small square openings in the shelves that will work perfect for storing all the reds, russets, onions,garlic and squash on in the canning room. 10 fixtures with 6 shelves each, hopefully they will be enough,or Ill have to beg my grandchildren for some back I gave them. If not, Ill can up the extra potatoes. Its going to make a huge difference in our grocery bill not having to buy this stuff!
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/10/2014 :  07:20:46 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Judy, I do not live in the Midwest. Great news about your garden.
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/11/2014 :  3:58:57 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I have some tomatoes that will turn red this week. They are Burpee Salsas. My BIG sunflower will open soon too. Green beans and yellow beans are growing fast... the podded peas (Burpeanna), pole peas and Survivor peas are growing great too!! Beet greens are getting sort of large too. Purple dahlia will bloom this week also. Yellow pear tomatoes are doing very well also. They will be ripe soon.
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JudyK
Star Contributor

Eau Claire, WI. 54703-1729
USA
1349 Posts

Posted - 08/14/2014 :  08:59:58 AM  Send JudyK an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
McBarb, what do you make using the Burpee Salsa tomatoes? Salsa making time is nearing fast now that weve gotten our first pick. I had enough to make one batch of zesty salsa which was given away to friends and relatives who love this stuff. I always use Romas, and if I run short and not able to get the full amount needed, then substitute the remainder with Big boys to get whats needed for a batch. So far, Ive gotten 157 quarts of pickles done up. Kurt says thats enough, but I want to make a couple more canners full to give to his Father and wife, who love one variety in particular that is a no sugar brine. THEN, I figure Ill be done making pickles. Its funny out of all the recipes Kurt had that "he wanted to make",only one was made, because he also liked the crispy dill with additional jalapeno and red pepper flakes added that got the flavor he really likes. I made several batches using his recipe, using up 10# of sugar, but then, used the crispy pickle recipe, and found it was even better, and cheaper to make.
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/15/2014 :  06:15:17 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I make salsa with my jalapenos and salsa tomatoes, lime juice, garlic and parsley or cilantro. They are smaller tomatoes. I also chop them up to make a quick sauce or eat them in a sandwich. Hmmm, making me hungry.
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JudyK
Star Contributor

Eau Claire, WI. 54703-1729
USA
1349 Posts

Posted - 08/15/2014 :  10:43:37 AM  Send JudyK an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
That sounds yummy and very simple to make. Kurt needs his to contain a lot of veggies- tomatoes,tomato paste,cilantro,green pepper,onion, garlic,jalapeno,corn and black beans.I also thicken the sauce a bit. Its more like a meal on a chip. I like salsa, but not a lot of it at once, while hell sit down with a pint and kill it in one sitting. Do you also make fresh uncooked cold salsas? Ive only sampled some and loved it served on a soft taco shell rolled up. Since you like fresh sauce, Id bet youd like that too. I believe my x-husbands wife used a store bought packaged mix, but Im sure theres recipes online using fresh ingredients, and no preservatives.
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2014 :  05:25:34 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I have never cooked salsa. It is very healthy!!
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2014 :  05:38:26 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I remembered the recipe for salsa burgers. I made them once on a grill and they were wonderful!! ... cooked in a pan on the stovetop...not so much.

salsa
bread crumbs
ground beef or turkey
cheese for top

Mix meat, bread crumbs and salsa together and cook burger, then top with cheese. A friend of mine makes a meat loaf with this recipe and tops with cheese. That would be good too.
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Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
3047 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2014 :  05:43:06 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I make pico de gallo often: tomatoes, bell peppers, sweet onions, and whatever variety of hot peppers I happen to have, and cilantro. No salt. Just chop everything up very fine, mix together, and serve at room temp or chilled. I like it best immediately, as I am a tomato snob. Fresh tomatoes start to lose their flavor the moment they are cut and if they are not cooked they become bland fairly quickly (but still better than hothouse). My husband, who cares less about just a tomato, prefers the pico de gallo after it has had time to meld the flavors together over night.

AND I am so excited. The tomato plants that I was finding so disappointing are full of blooms. I'm guessing they were misidentified at the store, and are a variety that takes longer to yield than what was advertised. Here's hoping!

Jnanne
Silver certified
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2014 :  06:31:29 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Jnanne, what are the tomatoes? Do you know? Well, whatever they are.... it is great you got some.
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2014 :  12:32:36 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I picked my first jalapeno!! I grated it over some potatoes with scallions, garlic, cheddar cheese and milk...cooked it in crockpot on high for 2.5 hours. YUMMY YUMMY!!
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Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
3047 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2014 :  3:38:32 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I have no clue. Right now they are little nubbins. Hopefully they'll get big.The tag said they were Better Girl. So far only the Sweet 100 has done anything--and they've made maybe a dozen cherry tomatoes. Anything else has rotted on the vine before ripening. We tried picking early, and they just rotted in the kitchen. Too small to fry.

Jnanne
Silver certified
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/17/2014 :  06:13:20 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I am growing super sweet 100 cherry tomatoes too. Ate my first one yesterday!! Will have lots.
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JudyK
Star Contributor

Eau Claire, WI. 54703-1729
USA
1349 Posts

Posted - 08/19/2014 :  08:37:06 AM  Send JudyK an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
I dont think youll be disappointed Jnanne in planting Better Girl tomatoes. I planted them last year in my little garden here at the house and they were the same size as my Big Boy plants and tomatoes. This year though, the fruit is actually bigger than the Big Boys. Last year because it was so dry here, I had to water them using city water, while this year weve had lots of nice rainfall, and no need to water.Nothing compares to rain water, thats for sure. Even the other veggies we planted here at the house,are doing better this year than last. I dont know what has happened, but a good many of those tomato plants that were effected by the Black Walnut, the tomatoes of good size are actually ripening, although some of the Romas Ive cut open have black centers. They dont seem to have lost their flavors, which is good. While saw quite the opposite when we picked some sweet corn the other day from that area and ate that night. That was the absolute worst corn weve ever had. VERY bland!It was like eating sawdust!
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Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
3047 Posts

Posted - 08/20/2014 :  6:01:44 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Last year I had to fight the birds for the right to eat my tomatoes. We had to pick them almost immediately after they began to turn red or the birds would peck holes in them. This year they start to rot at about the same time they start to turn red. None have gotten bigger than a small Roma, no matter what kind of tomato they are. We've had far fewer blooms than ever before and most of them are not producing fruit.

The plants at the church are going gangbusters and it is amazing the amount of veggies we've had to give away this season. The church is on the southern edge of town and has gotten significantly more rain than we've had at the house. We see lots of lightning and hear the thunder, but have had only a few days of really nice rain.

I don't know what is up this summer, but I am absolutely certain next year will be wonderful! And at least I've been able to buy some local tomatoes and friends have shared tomatoes, cukes, and squash. Our flowers, on the other hand, are doing great.

Jnanne
Silver certified
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MCBarb
Star Contributor

USA
1666 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2014 :  05:11:13 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Jnanne, what kind of flowers do you have? I am growing sunflowers, nasturtiums, red nasturtiums, marigolds, zinnias, outhouse hollyhocks, pernennial hollyhocks, geraniums, sweet peas, purple dahlia, glads and loads of morning glories. I also bought fuschia and petunias with spikes.

It is strange what you said about the tomatoes. I usually pick mine when they start to turn. If I don't someone else will. LOL...

I just planted a whole tray of seeds. Geraniums and basil came up with in 4 days. I also planted coleus, delpheniums, columbine, dill, sage, parsley and cilantro.
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Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
3047 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2014 :  11:46:58 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I'm on the ten-year plan for this property, adding new perennials each year with the goal of making the place gorgeous in ten. This is year two. Except for the weeping peach, the flowering trees were already here when we moved in.

So far I have periwinkle, gerbera daisies, a large violet bed, shamrocks, iris in many colors, daffodils, several varieties of lilies, roses, prickly pear, pansies, dianthus, mums...My mother-in-law put a gorgeous paradise plant in the front yard. Flowering shrubs and trees include three colors of Althea, hibiscus, azalea, two colors of crepe myrtle, weeping peach, dogwoods, and something I have yet to identify that makes pretty white flowers in the fall. There's several tall, spindly, shrubby things that resemble forsythia, but have white flowers. The monkey grass is blooming right now, and it is thick enough to cover the remains of the spring bulbs as the foliage withers.

Next year I plan to start putting different varieties of allium and hyacinth into the beds and increase the shamrock and violets along the borders. The shamrocks are gorgeous, but they die back when it gets really hot and only remain in the shadiest spots once summer really hits.

Jnanne
Silver certified
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