Monday, September 22, 2008

Attack of the tomatoes

Ahhh, the garden... so delicious, so many wonderful fruits and veggies.. soooo sooo soooo many TOMATOES!!! Why oh why did I once again plant WAY too many tomato plants?? I am the ONLY person in my house that eats them. I have tomatoes coming out the whazoo! I'll tell you why I did it (again), it is because by the time spring planting comes around I'm so desperate for a delicious mouth watering sunny garden tomato, that I think I could eat 50 bushels all by myself! Now what to do?
I've eaten a million, just raw and fresh and dripping down my chin and arm, I've made soup. I've made sauce. I've made salsa... now what? I still have so many... and more and more are ripening as we speak. Do you have any fabulous tomato recipes that you'd like to share? I don't want to can... but I will freeze. So lay those recipes on me! OR get your buns over here and pick a basketful to take home.

The garden did really well this year. This being only our second year as gardeners, we are definitely still learning.

The Goods:
Tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, peas, green beans, spinach, and we actually had grapes this year - woohoo!

The Bads:
carrots - too small and deformed,
broccoli - a giant plant grew without any broccoli on it
eggplant - a plant with no fruit
artichokes - it was experimental, but again... a plant with no fruit
strawberries - they were good at the very beginning of the summer. then slugs drilled holes in them and pill bugs moved in.
raspberries and blackberries - only a handful of berries each
herbs - some did ok, some burned up in the sun

  • I just found this guy and he has an excellent idea for growing big hearty carrots using pots. I'm going to try that next year.
  • Now the broccoli, eggplant, and artichokes were all in the same bed. That bed grew corn last year. Could that have anything to do with it?? I think I should have started the eggplant earlier in the house.
  • I need to find an organic and safe way to combat the slugs next year. I didn't plant lettuce this year because of them... any ideas?
  • Could my blackberry and raspberry plants be less fruitful because they are only 2 years old? Or does it have to do with the pruning that I didn't do?
  • I think I'll put my herbs in a shadier spot in the yard.

Gardening is really quite rewarding, but I think I need to take another class. I took one last year, but it seemed to be a graduate level class for a 101 kind of student. Now that I know a little more, I think I'd get more out of the class.

PS - Fischer will eat all sorts of veggies while standing in the garden, but almost NONE once they are in the house. Lesson: i need to set Fisch in the garden 15 minutes a day to let him graze!!


Brian and Courtni said...

If I were closer I would take you up on your offer to come get tomatoes...yum! nothing better! Even though some of your stuff didn't work how you wanted it, I am just impressed at how much you planted!

Oh, and your strawberries and raspberries will just get better with each year...the first few years tend to be sparse. That is the only gardening fact I know (and it is not because of my parents bushes that I know this.)

Someday we will have a yard and I will try my hand at the whole gardening thing, but until then...I'll just live vicariously through yours. :-)

Raynola said...

Anytime you want to get rid of more tomatoes,let me know. I made fresh mango salsa with the last batch you gave me and it was gone in a matter of hours! Next time I see you I will give you my recipe for veggie lasagne. With eggplant and or zucchini, yummy! Robert even likes it, so your boys may.

MamaBird said...

Gazpacho! joy of cooking recipe minus the jalapeno. 'picy enough without it.

More sauce! Can you really ever have enough pasta sauce?

I have total and complete food envy. Must go check my garden (lettuce outside my door doing well but haven't been down to thin my carrots and beets)...