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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

August planting and new method for freezing bush beans

The pre sprouted peas I planted several days ago are now up. I didn't even have to sprout them intentionally. When looking for something in the small drawer of my fridge, I came upon a small zip loc bag of fresh peas which were deeply hidden in the back of the drawer; and they were sprouted! What a surprise! I didn't know that fresh, refrigerated peas would sprout, so I planted them and will have a fall crop a bit earlier than I would have expected.

I planted some carrots nearby and am watering that area twice a day. It may be too late, but I think I will plant some lettuce seeds where I pulled out some old broccoli this morning. Using heavy duty remay in past years, kept me in lettuce through December, so I will put some seeds on slightly wet hand towel paper after breakfast and get that in a zip loc bag and plant them when they sprout.

We are in a hot spell with over 100F expected tomorrow and 106F expected in R, Thursday so I think it's best to sprout them in the house.

My Roc d'Or yellow bush beans are producing like mad and they are the best tasting beans. Since I was only planting for one, my first planting was only about 8 or 9 seeds, and I'm getting enough daily now for one generous serving, so I'm now starting to freeze some.

Yesterday I read where a couple of people tried freezing bush beans without blanching and they said it worked fine. So I did that yesterday with a couple of packages. They said the bean taste and texture was better using that method, so it's definitely worth trying.

Since my tomatoes were planted so late, the only ripe ones I'm getting are the sweet millions, and some garden critters are helping themselves to a lot of them. My neighbor said raccoons are eating her green tomatoes!  My late planted cucumbers are now producing and I see that I have my first butternut squash. All my squash was planted late because of my having to recuperate from the surgery on my leg after a bad car accident in April that required 3 months of healing, and no weight on my right leg for the first six weeks of that period. So this late garden planting of so many things is going to be an interesting experiment.

This week I also cleaned up the dead and dying sweet peas and edible peas. Some of the sweet peas were in two window boxes on a bench in my flower garden, so I got them out and loosened the soil, added organic fertilizer and planted 3 different varieties spinach in both those boxes a few days ago. They should be coming up in another couple of days.

We have a lot of rats in the neighborhood and I think I'm finally getting on top of that problem. I think they may have been helping themselves to some of my garden produce as well. Newly sprouted bean plants that were three or four inches high just disappeared overnight, and I know I'm sharing strawberries with some critters. My early fava beans did well until some critter discovered the patch and then I found them half eaten on a daily basis. Since those beans grow pretty high on the stem, I'm figuring it may have been either a raccoon or those darned rats again!

Since I have to go out to the veggie garden after dinner to do a bit of hand watering, I think I'll plant more spinach where I just removed some of the old broccoli plants. There's some summer kale going to seed and looking pretty sad, so I'll probably pull those as well and give me even more room for extra spinach.

It sure feels great to be able to feel healed enough to be spending this time in my garden again!

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