Posts

Showing posts from July, 2013

Pop! Goes the...Pickle Top!

Image
If you can't stand the heat...and the smell of vinegar...you might want to stay out of my kitchen today. Yep, Patricia's making pickles!



Pop! That's one done...
Just ignore those popping sounds for a moment, and let's start this story at the beginning, shall we?
It began on a warm, sunny day in mid-April...with some Straight Eight seeds, a trowel, a hefty shovel of compost, a trellis made from some repurposed lattice panels that formerly lived on our deck-railings, and rain...lots and lots of rain. The vines grew big and strong and lush over the lattice. 
More rain. The bees and other pollinators visited the lovely yellow flowers.


More rain. And before you knew what was happening...presto! Cucumbers! Lots and lots of cucumbers!!


Pop! Pop! That's another one done...and another...
Have I ever told you I don't eat cucumbers? Well, not raw cucumbers, that is. I like them, really I do, but they don't seem to like me much. My neighbors like them, so I remember to includ…

The Other Side of Sixty

Image
Good morning, from the other side of 60! Truly, it's a good place to be...better than the alternative, as my Daddy was fond of saying. Of course he never admitted to making it to 40 much less 60, since when asked how old he was, he always said he was 39 and holding!
We started my special day off early...at 4:00 a.m. Hadn't meant to get up quite that early, but Elmo decided he needed "Hop on Pop" time at that hour, the Good Lord knows why. (That's what we call it, when one or more of the dogs takes a notion to climb up on Mr. T while he is sleeping...or trying to sleep. Hop on Pop, indeed.)
We had set our alarm for 5:00 a.m. in order to be able to see the sunrise...which Timeanddate.com said was 6:15 for Greensboro and 6:16 for Winston-Salem. Didn't have a listing for High Point, but since we are about halfway between GSO and WS, we figured 6:15 and 1/2 ought to be about right for planning purposes. Prepped the coffee maker the night before...all we had to do wa…

The Squash Are Coming! The Squash Are Coming!

Image
Fair warning: if you see me coming toward you with a grocery bag, I'm probably bringing you some of this morning's harvest...and there's probably a squash or two or ten in that bag. What can I say? It's that time of the year. Squash, green beans, and tomatoes, oh my! 
Here's a picture of a zuke that almost got away from me. It was hiding under a couple of leaves, growing to town.


Most folks suggest harvesting squash from 4-6" in length...when they are just ripe and most tender. But it rarely takes more than 24 hours, especially when the weather is this warm and wet, for the little morsels to grow into mammoth mallets! Our neighbor said he picked a zuke while we were gone to Looeyvul that he described as big as a baseball bat...said his wife commented "did you drive that thing into the house, or carry it?" Wish he'd taken a picture...
[Be sure to check out my post over on our garden blog, Gardening With Giants, to read more about what's happening…

The 2013 Great Hemerocallis Hunt

Image
We are back home, recovering from our annual Great Hemerocallis (Daylily) Hunt. Thankfully, the temperatures didn't reach 100 this year as in years past...but mid-90's, with humidity readings to match, and no shade sure made it feel like the thermometer hit the century mark. Whew! What a day! We have been busy as these bees. (Heheheheh...I couldn't resist showing you these pictures we took with our iPhone cameras...Thomas took the yellow one, I took the pink one...:-). 




So, why do we go in July...the hottest month of the year, you ask? Well, that's when the day lilies are at peak bloom (June and July), that's when the NC farms tend to be open on the weekends, and that's as close to my birthday as we can get. [You may recall that for several years now, I have celebrated my Big Day with a trip to the Daylily Farm to pick out a new cultivar or two...or nine...:-) ] We missed last year because of our extended stay in KY, which has several Daylily farms, no doubt...b…

Found My Thrill

Image
Sing it, Fats Domino:


"I found my thrill on Blueberry Hill,
On Blueberry Hill where I found you
The moon stood still on Blueberry Hill
And lingered till my dreams came true."

I've been singing that song on a loop for the past few days. Is it possible to be this excited that a bush has borne fruit? Seems silly...but there it is. Actually, it isn't one blueberry bush...there are 9. We got three in the Spring of 2011 and added 6 more in the Fall. There two different varieties of rabbiteye blueberries: 5 called Climax and 4 called Premier. We purchased them from the Guilford County 4-H and planted them in three raised beds. I've written more about them over on our gardening blog, Gardening With the Giants. (Click here to go there.)
Anyway, we missed whatever harvest there was last year, so we didn't know what to expect. Returning from our recent trip, I was thrilled to collect 2 whole cupsful! Yippee!! And were they ever tasty...:-)
Unfortunately, they didn'…