Posted by: oceannah | August 17, 2012

Homestead Happenings 17 August

summer gardenLate August and with all the rains the garden is still very green.  In the foreground are beds of broadcast seeded carrots that filled out very nicely and some corn coming along…Here’s what is is doing out yonder…

stuttgart onionsThe onions were drying in the sun then the rains came now they are finishing drying in the house!

basilWith all the fresh basil, pesto has figured into many meals these past weeks.

green pepper from the gardenfrying peppers organicBig blocky peppers waiting for a bit more sun to turn red and frying peppers that are delicious with all those onions!

brussels sprouts in the gardenBrussles sprouts in the field growing nicely.  Soon I will clip the tops off to encourage the sprouts to stop going up and start filling out.

brussels sprouts upcloseUp close and personal with the sprouts…wee tiny things they are at this point.  But that will change.  The clipping off of the top really helps them fill out and plump up to nice sized sprouts.

hazel nut treeThe hazel nuts are beginning to form and we couldn’t be happier.  These tasty nuts need to be picked once they turn brown…after missing the boat to the squirrels a few years in a row we figured out the timing and have been full of nuts ever since.

eggplantAt the rate we are producing eggplant (hahah) eggplant parm is probably not on the menu anytime soon!

rattlesnake beansBetween these posts you can see the big empty section that the darn rabbit chomped to bits.  The beans are coming on.  I love rattlesnake beans.  They freeze well, are delicious when frozen and if/when you let them go at the end of the season, they make great dried beans.

green beansSome random rattlesnakes that were quickly tossed up against the fence wall after the strawberries were done…here they come.

green beansthis is the fence down a bit lower…the beans are going up up and away!

haricot vertsI grow haricot verts also.  My husband can’t stand these beans.  He calls them fussy, demanding and even though he’ll eat them, he will not pick them.  I on the other hand love haricot vert (French green beans) they are delicate and sweet.  It is also true that they must be picked pretty much daily or the beans get tough.  So be it.

tondo di chiaro zucchiniNope, not green pumpkins.  Tondo di Chiaro which came by accident from the Fed-co seed order.  We are very thankful!  All our regular zucchini and yellow squashes as well as a few of the winter squashes (sweet mama and another) succumbed to squash beetles.  These plants are producing heavily and the zukes are delicious.

butternut squash

The butternuts are starting to form.  We always grow a lot of winter squashes.  This year however the cucumber beetles have taken a toll.  There will be less variety in the squash closet this winter.

garden row newly plantedSo here we are in the middle of summer and I, an avid gardener with little zucchini and no yellow squash.  Counting the days on the seed packs, I decided that there are enough days left to possibly pull off a harvest yet! With the added benefit that often a late crop won’t get chomped up by the pests whose time has passed.  Fingers crossed…

snapdragonsI could not post a whole update without at least one flower shot!  These hotties are such a great color…love snaps.

pumpkins comingSome of the green globes in the garden are in fact pumpkins.  These are for Jack-O-Lanterns, not for eating.

Anuenue lettuceAnuenue lettuces are my all time favorite for summer.  I have little short rows tucked hither and yon where space was available.  This lettuce does not go bitter in the heat.  It’s a crisphead and the perfect lettuce to enjoy with the summer time favorite BLT!

the gunxDown in the valley the corn is coming on strong.  This is a commercial field, but I loved the look of it with the Gunx in the background.  The Shawangunk Mountains are a gorgeous place to hike and rock climb.  There are nooks and crannies that are very cool both in spirit and temperature.  One section actually has ice caves that hold snow for most if not all of the summer…but that would require the snow to have fallen in winter, which did not happen this past winter.

That’s what has been happening here this past week or so.  Been busy with other things as well…family, birthday, funerals of pets and I found out today that a family friend passed away.  An odd story that I thought I understood, but it turned out I thought it was the mama, when in fact it was the daughter, so I am shocked that a young woman of 38 can suddenly pass from a rampant infection.  Life is tentative….make the most of each breath, that’s the message I received from that news.

There are so many other things afoot, chores to be completed and a small renovation on the front burner, finally.  I’ll keep you posted.  How about you, are you feeling that nest-y autumnal itch?  I know I am…Closets cleaned, stocking up, mending/passing along that which no longer fits/serves…




  1. Anna, so sorry for your tough week. It’s a good reminder to all to make the most of each day – and you are doing just that with that on your beautiful homestead. Enjoy the bounty…the food – and the day,

    • Thanks Ogee. It is a bountiful summer in more ways than food. Spirit has blessed me with much learning and change this summer as well. I’m always grateful for the reminders to stay in the moment…apparently I still require them 😉

      • as do we all, methinks. Gardening often is a healing time for me, out in the sun or shade, weeding, harvesting, meditating as I go up one row and down the other. There is so much life there, some of it, like the potato beetles, destructive, and yet they too are simply being in the moment, living out their life cycle. Blessings to you.

      • That’s pretty much my feeling most of the time Joss, I don’t mind sharing some…but to have total losses is a sorrow. I’m with you on the healing aspect of the garden 🙂

      • I hear you. The deer ate all but two bean plants – that’s four rows of beans!!

      • Sorry girls; as beautiful, graceful, ephemeral as they are? Venison is as organic as it gets… And trust me, deer aren’t stupid, they won’t be hanging around your garden anymore.

  2. so sorry about the family friend – those things shock us into enjoying our autumnal bliss

    • Thanks LouAnn it was particularly shocking to me since I thought for a whole day that it was her mama who had passed, which in her 60’s is still young. Something about a mama having to deal with the death of a child cuts to the quick.

      • it does it does – I cannot imagine I would be able to deal with it

  3. I am also sorry to hear about the young woman. Unfortunately, working in health care I see sad young losses every week. It is never easy. I am very into the nesting phase as well. I am trying to help my 18 year old let go of some of her childhood so she can move forward with less “weight”. I love when the days are so hot but the evenings and nights can get so cool.

    • Thanks for commenting Angel. It must be challenging to work in the health profession and dealing with life and death situations on a regular basis. I had to laugh about your ‘weight loss’ for the 18 year old daughter. I just had the conversation about putting the (rather large w/ fencing, horses & various critters) doll house here with my 13 y/o…no doing yet. I feel these parts of our childhood that we pack up and put aside are very important to get the timing right. I don’t want to rush her at all….even though it appears to me she no longer ‘plays’ with the doll house and its contents. The connection to it or the movement to the next phase is not quite done brewing yet. Cool evenings here too, love it! We always call it good sleeping weather.

  4. Boxes packed and shipped, I’m definitely feeling it!

    Thanks for the garden tour 🙂

    • You’re welcome Sandi. Your nest in FL awaits you 🙂 I know how excited you are… soon very soon now.

  5. Where do you find your energy…you are such an inspiration to me.

    • awww gee! Truthfully I don’t think I have any more or less energy than others…although I do things a bit differently than most. For instance I don’t have a tv. I can’t imagine how people have time for watching tv?!! It’s about choice I suppose. Yesterday afternoon we were sitting outside (hubby and I) for a bit of a break having an iced tea…we noticed that there were a lot (8-10) dragon flies cruising the yard. First of all, this was outside the norm…secondly why?? Upon further investigation (read sitting in chairs sipping tea) we noticed that there were some small insects rising up from the grass hatching out. Then the fun began! While keeping eyes peeled to the wee insects we were able to watch the dragonflies snag them in mid flight! I’d never seen such a sight before…pretty cool to us. I suppose you could find such a show on tv or the internet, but up close and personal trumps those hands down to me.

      • I want to sit a spell, drink some iced tea and watch the dragonflies. What an amazing show!

        p.s. haven’t had TV in 4 years. Did watch a bit of the Olympics here last week, as I’m staying in the hospital, but don’t miss it at all!

      • It was splendid Sandi…quite the show.

  6. HoleeO Massive post Anna!
    Your garden’s gorgeous, thanks for sharing it’s lush beauty. Obviously you received (or watered) just enough to keep things going nicely (well except the eggplant; ) Don’t think I’ve ever seen squash beetles (knock wood; ) but being zucchini-less at this time of year is too terrible to contemplate – don’t think I’ll ever complain about having an excess again – speaking of which, are Tondo di Chiaro a type of summer squash?
    Truly though? Such gorgeousness in your Garden of Eden: )

    • I know the case of the missing zucchini 😦 Tondo di Chiaro are a round zucchini though so in essence we are not utterly bereft, just missing the typical cocozelles.

  7. What a lovely garden!! No zuke or yellow squash??? Amazing!! Would love to have a green thumb!!

    • None except the 8 balls…

  8. Great stroll through the fruits of your labour, Anna. Plus what view you have over the cornfield. The prairie in me loves a long view.

    Accomplished a number of pre-winter-ickies, but the biggest blessing? My wood is all chopped and I just finished stacking it a while ago. I have old cedar shingles for kindling, spruce cones galore for keeping the flame the shingles started, tons of bark for getting the fire hot and an extra bunch of wood to keep the house toasty.

    Soon, I’ll be making a call to my friend with the abundant blackberry patch.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the stroll! Always nice to get some of the work done early…. a big wood pile is a blessing and I’m kind of getting in the mood for slow simmered soups on the wood stove 🙂

  9. This post is chock full of photos which inspire me. I just wonder what I should be doing next. I pulled out my corn and have a bare 6×6′ space in my parkway, which seems fairly criminal not to get that planted with something. My question is, should I try installing a raised bed there (technically the city owns the parkways), because the soil is like adobe brick. Then, I could plant chard, broccolini and beets right now. In fact, I’m a little late on that. But, installing a raised bed means getting Rene over here to help me. Ah, decisions. While I mull it over, time’s a wastin.’ I’m seeing a drip line in your rows, right? That’s another thing I have to figure out. Watering. In a raised bed, things get dry in a hurry here, with never a drop of rain. And I don’t always stand over everything long enough with my leaky hose putting more water on me than the garden. Just the name Rattlesnake Beans gave me pause. I discovered my first lizard in my flower island a week ago. I think it’s good to have it around. Thanks for the inspiration! 🙂 – Kaye

    • Hey Kaye, Thinking the “raised bed” might be used, at least partially, for a (good 2-3″) layer of mulching compost to fertilise and cool your roots at the same time, hey Anna?

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