Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Garden and Stuff

Today I'm making up for the lack of pictures in my last few blog posts. I will now subject you to my garden. Edibles are my favourite things to grow. Even many of my flowers are edible. Either that or can be used for dyestuff. Why waste space on things that are just pretty and not useful? Yeah, I know I still have lots of "just pretty" in my garden, mostly in the front yard. Here are some from the back garden.

These are the beans, which are keeping me busy picking them. Today I have to make a large bean salad and freeze some of them before they go bad. They don't keep very long in the fridge.

Those red and white flowers are the Painted Lady runner beans and the plain red ones are Scarlet Runners. I like to alternate them when planting: Painteds are brown seeds and Scarlets are purple so they're easy to separate. The beans themselves are almost the same but Painteds aren't so fuzzy. And they both taste delicious. Those lovely speckled purple beans on the right are my Dragon Tongue bush beans. Unfortunately they turn yellow when cooked. The Burgundy beans in the middle turn green. Wish there was some way to cook them and keep their colours as well.

These are the tomatoes that are threatening to take over the world! The ones in front are the Juliette cherry tomatoes that are shaped like miniature paste tomatoes. They're indeterminant, aka Monsters! The rest are Taxi (yellow) and Oregon Spring (red) which are both determinant and behave themselves. Unfortunately, I might have to prune those bratty Juliettes to get them to stay in their house. Otherwise I might lose all the tomatoes to late blight if they get dirt splashed on them from the rain.

In front of the tomatoes, notice my pathetic peppers which are picking up a bit now that the weather is warmer. I actually have a couple of Gypsy and banana peppers coming. And if you really want pathetic, check out my sorry excuse for a pattypan squash! To give you the scale, it's less than 6" tall. But it's the only one left out of 4 and there's only one zucchini too and it doesn't look any better. Next year: I try them in pots.

Lastly I want to show off my berries. The blueberries are having an off-year (last year I picked buckets off my two bushes) but this year I haven't even filled one bucket and the early ones are just about done. Oh well, there's still lots in the freezer! However, the blackberries will soon be making up for the blueberries. They're loaded! We mostly only get the ones inside the fence because all the neighbours figure it's fair picking outside the property line.

Did you know a blackberry has to ripen for a couple of days more after it turns black before it tastes good? I had one yesterday! Tastes like sunshine and purple mixed together. Yum.

BTW, that gigantic tree behind the blueberries is my Persian walnut tree. It's taller than my house and sticks out over the fence to the street beside our house. But remember the squirrels? No walnuts for me. It makes a good sun umbrella though.

Craft Report
OK, I know it's spinning Tuesday and I haven't spun anything yet. The day isn't over yet! I'll post pictures tomorrow to prove that I at least spun something.

Here's Kiera's Hat in progress. The corkscrews are a bit hard on my wrists so I'm taking them slowly. The book underneath is Nicky Epstein's Knitting on the Edge where I got the idea for them. Yes, it's the same book that I got the lace edging for the poncho. It has earned its keep on my bookshelves now! I was going to give you a link but you can get her books just about anywhere.

Spinning. Right. I've got that great dyed roving, the same stuff I plied last time, don't I? Klaus my Louet spinning wheel and I are now heading for the deck under the walnut tree. Hope the squirrels aren't cheekily pruning walnuts down on my head today.

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