Disorderly Harvest

OK.....what happened to the markets? I turn my back for two weeks and it’s chaos! Get back in there and turn those machines on!

An uncommonly chilly July and August ripened the fruits and vegetables early and certainly not when my new and improved timetable had allotted for picking and canning. This is highly irregular and I lodged a strong protest with Nature’s powers that be, but to no avail. Nothing to do but roll up my sleeves and jump in.

I delayed the previously scheduled priming and painting of out buildings, stuck my blogging chores on the back burner and have fallen woefully behind on all correspondences and administrative chores. Thank goodness Cog actually writes the checks so at least the bills were paid.

While the garden fizzled in sections with the unpredictable weather, I was able to retrieve and can the customary haul of tomato soup and Chicken Taco Soup as well as more green tomato salsa.

Taco Soup

Those enormous sunflowers were ready to be cut down last week. I had the teen Cog help in what resulted in hilarity. At 5’1”, I had her reach up as far as she could with gloves on and hold the stalk of the first big sunflower. As I snipped the two inch thick trunk with a pair of Fiskar tree loppers, the heavy flower promptly went over her head and pulled her backward with it. Fortunately it deposited her on soft grass and she was no worse for the wear. By the end of the task, I was cutting and she was catching as they fell.

The seeds in the flower heads are fat and healthy looking . We have put them in a dark dry area of the basement to dry out so we can retrieve the seeds in a few weeks. It’s nice to know neither the dry nor rainy weather deters them from growing up here.

sunflowers harvest

The apples were early by two to three weeks. A torrential rain and high winds took down a wonderful green apple tree down the road. With permission from the absentee property owners, we collected the apples and inquiries were made to secure a fee to remove the tree. Since our Red Delicious, Fuji and various other apple trees were also prolific and ripe with sweet apples, last week was devoted to making apple sauce. That marks the last of the bulk canning from the garden this year.

moar applesauce

While hip deep in canning mode, the enormous replacement solar inverter was delivered. Oh? I didn’t confess… er explain how I blew up Cog’s solar system? Perhaps I shall do so in another article a few weeks from now when it’s more of a funny cautionary tale rather than salt in an open wound lol.

Still active in the garden, all pepper plants are in full steam ahead mode. I have picked, diced and frozen about 25 to 50 bell peppers each week for several weeks in a row. Last week I canned another batch of sweet pickled banana peppers and their replacements are almost ready to pick again. The cayenne and jalapenos are still replicating like bunnies.

The hardy kiwi is ripe and needs to be picked over the next few days. Perhaps some kiwi walnut bread, which freezes well and some kiwi jam too? The kiwi stay good in Tupperware stored in the refrigerator for many weeks. They can be eaten like grapes as well.

With the exception of the latest batch of lettuce growing, the remainder of the garden is ready to be tilled for the fall and winter. Soon we will be back to cutting trees for the last bit of firewood we’ll need for the winter heating season. With more than 2/3 of the wood we need already stacked and seasoned, we are in good shape to finish this other “stacking” chore and not worried about cutting trees throughout the winter months.

We are watching the news and markets closely. While events are certainly experiencing an increase in velocity, Cog reminds me the central banks haven’t even begun printing in earnest yet for the big blow-off. In the meantime I have re-inventoried my stores of Q-tips, bar soaps and pink lip gloss just to be on the safe side. Rest easy in knowing should I decide to personally locate and press the panic button, I will not do so quietly.

panic button

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