Author Topic: Fritz's garden 2020  (Read 8294 times)

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #90 on: July 08, 2020, 04:57:19 PM »
Here's today's harvest.  That cucumber by the knife is bigger than we thought.  That's the second handful of the green beans.  That's the 2nd plant that grew from the first batch of seeds.  All the rest are just now putting on flowers and tiny little beans.



We haven't eaten our pickles yet.  The fermented radishes I made are firm, not crisp, but not mushy.

Offline Stwood

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #91 on: July 08, 2020, 05:21:44 PM »
 8)

Offline Mintbird

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #92 on: July 08, 2020, 06:47:29 PM »
Fritz, I’m so envious of your garden. I’ve had terrible success with my container garden, I think because of the horrible 90-100 deg heat we’ve been having here in the high desert of California. My squash are the size of my thumbnail, my cuc plants are barely hanging on and I’ve had a first batch of strawberries die and my second batch are on their way. My cherry toms are the size of a dwarf Tom. I’m so discouraged, but I keep on trying.

Congrats on your awesome garden!

Offline bigbear

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #93 on: July 09, 2020, 07:27:11 AM »
So how do you guys know when to harvest your spaghetti squash?

We've grown spaghetti squash with varying degrees of success over the last 5 years.  We pick when it's yellow.  Though in bad years the vine is dying when the fruit is yellowing.  I always feel like there's something I'm doing wrong with them because I typically only get 3-4 gourds from each vine.  But it seems like the number should be closer to a dozen. 

Anyway, spaghetti squash is a favorite here.  It's a great way to keep the carbs down!




Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #94 on: July 12, 2020, 12:59:54 PM »
Preservation update:

This morning we made 21 pints of bread and butter pickles.  Last night, we blanched and froze zucchini and yellow squash.  We lay them out on trays to freeze then bag them up.  This afternoon we bagged up 11 bags of frozen squash.

Anyone know the "right way" to freeze grated zucchini?  We like to make up zucchini bread in the Winter.  And while we've just grated and frozen it in the past, I'm pretty sure that's not the best way to preserve it.

Preserved harvest 2020
13 pints dill pickles
40 pints bread and butter pickles
18 bags of blanched and frozen summer squash (1 bag = 1 meal)

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #95 on: July 12, 2020, 10:22:41 PM »
That's exactly how I've done it in the past... just grate it up and freeze it in the quantity I need for my zucchini bread recipe. Works fine as long as you include the liquid when you use it in the recipe.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #96 on: July 18, 2020, 09:15:59 AM »
Harvested beans last night.  Also harvested the pickling cucumbers and the zucchini.  Will be making bread and butter pickles out of the cukes and grating and freezing most of the zukes. 

I'm going on vacation tomorrow, so I'm sure the garden will be a mess when we get back.  Hopefully the  neighbor will come and harvest the cucumbers and zucchini while we are gone. 



We canned most of the beans.  This it our preferred method of preservation.  We got a full canner load of 7 quarts.  Plus would have had probably 2 additional quarts, but I blanched and froze those instead.



Preserved harvest 2020
13 pints dill pickles
40 pints bread and butter pickles
18 bags of blanched and frozen summer squash (1 bag = 1 meal)
7 quarts green beans
2 bags of blanched and frozen green beans  (1 bag = 1 meal)

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #97 on: July 18, 2020, 03:17:47 PM »
That is fantastic!!! Hope you have a nice vacation.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #98 on: July 18, 2020, 03:24:17 PM »
Just an update on the cukes and zukes.  Made up 20 pints of bread and butter pickles, obviously my wife loves them.  For the zucchini, we shredded a bunch to freeze.  Packed in 2 different sized bags.  Zucchini  bread recipe calls for 4 cups, the zucchini tots call for 2 1/4 cups.  We froze 2 bags with 4 cups, and 4 bags with 2 1/4 cups.  I'd like to have just done 1 cup portions, but SWMBO (She Who Must Be Obeyed) wanted them like this.

Preserved harvest 2020
13 pints dill pickles
60 pints bread and butter pickles
18 bags of blanched and frozen summer squash (1 bag = 1 meal)
7 quarts green beans
2 bags of blanched and frozen green beans  (1 bag = 1 meal)
18 cups shredded and frozen zucchini
« Last Edit: July 18, 2020, 05:53:40 PM by fritz_monroe »

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #99 on: July 18, 2020, 03:59:29 PM »
Now that's a lot of bread and butter pickles! No way could we eat that many in a year.

You should share your zucchini tots recipe.. never tried that.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #100 on: July 18, 2020, 04:42:58 PM »
You should share your zucchini tots recipe.. never tried that.
We haven't gotten it figured out completely.  They are still pretty dense.  It's basically shredded zucchini, bread crumbs and mozzarella cheese.  I'll post it once we get it straightened out.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #101 on: July 18, 2020, 05:41:39 PM »
I finished setting up the drip irrigation on timers this afternoon.  My wife's planters on the porch will be watered every morning and I broke the garden up into 2 zones that will each get 2 hours of watering every other night.

I thought that the wife had harvested everything, but she just mentioned that she only got the pickling cucumbers.  So here's today's harvest.  Got the first couple okra and jalapeno peppers.  We also grabbed the largest of the green peppers to take on vacation.  There's still a bunch of peppers that will end up red, orange and yellow, but they haven't ripened yet, they are all still green.


Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #102 on: July 18, 2020, 07:16:34 PM »
Wow! Good work!

Offline Stwood

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #103 on: July 19, 2020, 08:21:39 AM »
Lookin good.

We picked one year for some distant neighbors while they vacationed. Everything we could find, and when they got back, asked if we had picked.  ??? ;D ;D ;D
They had a good crop that year.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #104 on: July 26, 2020, 06:31:35 PM »
We asked the neighbor to harvest anything they wanted while we were gone.  They obviously forgot that we asked. First shot is the garden cart filled up, but we couldn't see everything when piled up.



Here's a shot of the zucchini, peppers, start of the tomatoes and the slicing cucumbers.  There were a couple more zucchini that went bad in the garden.  That biggest zucchini is 5 lb. 11 oz.  I guess these huge zucchini are really only good for grating up and making zucchini bread?  Maybe zoodles?  Any other ideas for huge zukes?



The other end of the table has some big okra, yellow squash, pickling cucumbers and the first of the finished spaghetti squash.  There's still a bunch of spaghetti squash on the vines, but not ready.  The pumpkins are starting to turn orange and we have a few  watermelons on the vines.


Offline Stwood

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #105 on: July 27, 2020, 08:32:02 AM »
Leave the 5# zukes in your neighbors car seats....... ;D

Is your big okra tough? Our green okra gets tough after about 4" long. The red, about 6" long.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #106 on: July 27, 2020, 07:02:07 PM »
Is your big okra tough? Our green okra gets tough after about 4" long. The red, about 6" long.
Yep, I told the wife the big ones would be woody, but as most husbands know, we're idiots.  But she discovered that they are too tough tonight when she tried cutting them to bread and fry.  The little ones were good.

I cut the green bean plants and harvested all the beans off them.  I'm starting to get hit pretty good by the Mexican bean beetles.  I canned 7 more quarts of beans.  I have a bunch more to snap and will probably be able to get 7 additional quarts tomorrow.

I also did some looking for good recipes for those big zukes and cukes.  I made the zucchini relish that's on the UGA canning page, Summer Squash Relish.  I tasted some after I filled 6 pint jars and it is pretty good, I used that huge zucchini to make the batch.  I also found a chunky cucumber relish that looked pretty good.  Cucumber Relish  I only got 3 pints to can and about 1/3 pint that I'll put in the fridge.

Shredded relish is the zucchini relish, the chunks are the cucumber relish.



So here's the updated list
Preserved harvest 2020
13 pints dill pickles
60 pints bread and butter pickles
18 bags of blanched and frozen summer squash (1 bag = 1 meal)
14 quarts green beans
2 bags of blanched and frozen green beans  (1 bag = 1 meal)
18 cups shredded and frozen zucchini
3 pints chunky cucumber relish
6 pints zucchini relish

Offline Stwood

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #107 on: July 27, 2020, 07:12:48 PM »
Yep, I told the wife the big ones would be woody, but as most husbands know, we're idiots. 






 :rofl: :rofl:

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #108 on: July 28, 2020, 08:24:41 AM »
We haven't gotten it figured out completely.  They are still pretty dense.  It's basically shredded zucchini, bread crumbs and mozzarella cheese.  I'll post it once we get it straightened out.

Thank you!

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #109 on: July 28, 2020, 04:46:39 PM »
Still processing everything I can.  Canned 5 more quarts or green beans.

I made use of the longer beans to make some dilly beans.  A couple of years ago I made some basic dilly beans and they were okay, so I decided to try different kinds.  I made 2 pints of spicy dilly beans with garlic, dill and red pepper flake.  I also made 2 pints of dilly beans with garlic, dill, mustard seed and celery seed.



Preserved harvest 2020
13 pints dill pickles
60 pints bread and butter pickles
18 bags of blanched and frozen summer squash (1 bag = 1 meal)
19 quarts green beans
2 bags of blanched and frozen green beans  (1 bag = 1 meal)
18 cups shredded and frozen zucchini
3 pints chunky cucumber relish
6 pints zucchini relish
4 pints dilly beans

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #110 on: July 28, 2020, 09:28:41 PM »
Wow! You're doing great!

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #111 on: July 29, 2020, 07:23:55 AM »
Wow! You're doing great!
Thanks, but now I don't know what to do with all these cucumbers.  60 pints of bread and butter pickles will last a long time.

In case I like the dilly beans:
Brine 2.5 cups vinegar, 2.5 cups water, 4 Tbsp salt

Spicy Dilly Beans, each jar gets 1 clove garlic, 1 tsp dill seed, 1/2 tsp red pepper flake (recipe called for 1 tsp per jar)

Other Dilly Beans, each jar gets 1 clove garlic, 1 tsp dill seed, 1/2 tsp mustard seed, 1/2 tsp celery seed

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #112 on: July 29, 2020, 07:59:28 AM »
I could use some... just send them down here. My first planting was pretty much ruined by cucumber beetles... so my second round (in a different location) is starting to produce now. I'm still hopeful! My fermented pickles  (from cucumbers given by a neighbor) are doing well... probably almost ready to jar up and put in the fridge.

I'd like to make the sweet pickle recipe from my grandma if I get enough once the cucumbers really start producing...

I have some little bitty watermelons starting now and was able to harvest four butternut squash so far... still fighting the squash bug battle every day. So far, I've kept the adult numbers to a minimum by painstakingly picking off all the eggs I can find every day... and squishing any adult or juvenile bugs. I know it wouldn't really be feasible in a larger garden, but for my little beds, it is workable.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #113 on: July 29, 2020, 05:13:26 PM »
I could use some... just send them down here.

... still fighting the squash bug battle every day
I don't remember where "down here" is.  But if you were close, I'd give you all that you want.

I have never had issues with squash bugs, in my area squash vine borers are the problem.  They will take a healthy zucchini plant down over night.  I've been able to successfully get the grub in the past.  Luckily I haven't had that problem this year.  All the squash are doing well.

I'm starting to get some tomatoes.  It just occurred to me last night that I didn't have enough bottled lemon juice, so looked at options.  I decided that this year I'm going to use citric acid instead of lemon juice this year.  I picked up a jar of Ball's citric acid at a local small Ace store.  As I stated in the canning flats thread, I took my daughter for a driving lesson and stopped at a small hardware store.  Was thrilled to find they had plenty of regular lids.



In case anybody wasn't aware, there's a shortage in canning stuff this year.  Amazon has 2 box packs listed for $25.  I paid $3.59 in the store, which is still pretty high, but certainly not $12/box

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #114 on: July 30, 2020, 11:37:46 PM »
I don't remember where "down here" is.  But if you were close, I'd give you all that you want.

I have never had issues with squash bugs, in my area squash vine borers are the problem.  They will take a healthy zucchini plant down over night.  I've been able to successfully get the grub in the past.  Luckily I haven't had that problem this year.  All the squash are doing well.

I'm starting to get some tomatoes.  It just occurred to me last night that I didn't have enough bottled lemon juice, so looked at options.  I decided that this year I'm going to use citric acid instead of lemon juice this year.  I picked up a jar of Ball's citric acid at a local small Ace store.  As I stated in the canning flats thread, I took my daughter for a driving lesson and stopped at a small hardware store.  Was thrilled to find they had plenty of regular lids.


Tennessee -- too far for cucumber pickup or delivery!!!

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #115 on: July 31, 2020, 06:01:45 PM »
Just a preservation update today. 

I cut and froze a bunch of green peppers.
Grated a metric crap ton of zucchini.
Wife made 6 loaves of zucchini bread, froze 5 of them.
Froze a bunch more bags of shredded zucchini.
Made up 6 more pints of zucchini relish.

Preserved harvest 2020
13 pints dill pickles
60 pints bread and butter pickles
18 bags of blanched and frozen summer squash (1 bag = 1 meal)
19 quarts green beans
2 bags of blanched and frozen green beans  (1 bag = 1 meal)
62.5 cups shredded and frozen zucchini
3 pints chunky cucumber relish
12 pints zucchini relish
4 pints dilly beans
4.5 pounds chopped and frozen green peppers

Offline Stwood

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #116 on: July 31, 2020, 06:47:46 PM »

How did you bag and freeze the shredded zucchini?

Bag and freeze?, or freeze on a cookie sheet then bag it?

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #117 on: July 31, 2020, 09:19:44 PM »
When I bag and freeze my zucchini, I measure it out in a measuring cup for the amount I would use for a recipe and transfer to a freezer bag, flatten out and remove as much air as possible and freeze. Haven't tried the cookie sheet method, but I'm guessing it would work, too.

Offline Stwood

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #118 on: August 01, 2020, 08:45:22 AM »
We freeze a lot on the sheet, then transfer to a bag. That way it doesn't all stick together, like cantaloupe. We slice and cut into chunks, freeze on cookie sheets, then transfer to a big 2 gallon freezer bag. Comes apart fairly easy that way when you need a portion.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Fritz's garden 2020
« Reply #119 on: August 01, 2020, 10:37:09 AM »
For the shredded zucchini, we do just like LvsChant does.  We measure out what is needed for each of the various recipes.  Doesn't matter if shredded zucchini freezes into a big mass of squash.

For the chunks of squash, the green beans and the peppers, I spread those on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet to freeze.  Then bag them.

We have a baby rabbit living in the garden.  It has been bedding down among my tomatoes.  It doesn't mess with any of the garden plants, so I'm not really worrying about it.