Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. It is starting to seem like summer here. The weather has been summery for some time, but now the harvests are too. I got a nice harvest of squash and cukes last week, some of which are in the below photo. From top to bottom it’s Tasty Jade cucumbers along with Romanesco and Clarimore zucchini and White Scallop squash. The cukes wound up in several dishes, including Quick Refrigerator Pickles, tzatziki sauce, and a Freekeh Tabbouleh I made yesterday. The zukes wound up in Greek Turkey Meatballs, and in a spiralized salad I’ll talk about later.
My wife thinks I have been neglecting her blueberry harvests on my Monday reports. I don’t want to be guilty of that, so here’s a pic she took of them. She likes to harvest in the morning, often before breakfast, which makes for some really fresh berries for us to eat! She’s hauled in 13 pounds of them so far this year, enough to fill at least two gallon buckets.
I’ve been harvesting parsley and basil as needed in the kitchen. I cut some of the Italian Pesto Basil to make a batch of pesto last week. I got the seeds from Renee’s, and it is a nice basil for general use. I’m also growing Renee’s Profuma di Genova and Italian Genovese basil. All three are lovely in the kitchen. I know Michelle (From Seed To Table) is a fan of the Profuma di Genova too and did a Spotlight on it a few years back.
Cherry tomatoes are ripening fast right about now. Many are splitting after all the rain we’ve had lately, but most are still good to eat. It’s Sun Gold, Sun Sugar, Supersweet 100 and Black Cherry in the below photo.
The cherry tomatoes and pesto met up with some spiralized zucchini in a cool zucchini salad I made last week as a side to planked fish. The raw ‘zoodles’ are a nice way to enjoy the zucchini, and the combinations are really endless.
The Artisan Seeds tomatoes are coming along nicely. In the below photo I have Green Tiger, Blush, Purple Bumblebee, Sunrise Bumblebee and Taste. They are my ‘control group’ when I taste the other unnamed Artisan tomatoes I am trialing.
I also got my first ever taste of the Garden Gem tomatoes. My wife and I were both drooling over that tasting! Garden Gem has been called the ‘perfect tomato’, productive and disease-resistant, plus it’s a good shipper. And the flavor is wonderful, I can vouch for that. But it’s a tad too small, so market growers won’t grow it. The seeds aren’t even available commercially. You can get seeds for it and another University of Florida hybrid called Garden Treasure by making a $10 donation to the UFL tomato research fund. I’ve got Garden Treasure planted too, and should be getting some ripe tomatoes from it soon.
I decided to harvest my cabbage before the heads started splitting. It has not been a good year for cabbage, with most of the plants just refusing to head up. But I had enough to make a quart jar of sauerkraut and enough to get a taste of it for something else. The sauerkraut has been fermenting for four days now and is about ready to start tasting. Hopefully the fall planting will give us a bit more cabbage than the spring planting did. I’ve got a couple of savoy types I am going to try (Melissa, Chieftain) as well as the usual suspects I grow.
I cut some of the crisphead lettuce for salads. The plants aren’t making big heads, but they have lots of leaves and the quality is pretty good for a summer lettuce. Some I planted did better than others, including the Manoa and Slogun in the below photo. Sierra is also doing well. I’m happy for any lettuce I can get here in our typical sweltering July weather.
I harvested leaves from the Prizm kale I have growing in one of the cold frame beds. Prizm is a 2016 AAS winner, and is decorative as well as tasty. The short plants keep pumping out leaves despite our hot weather, and I want to set out a few more plants for fall. We’ll see how they like our winter weather too! This harvest went into a batch of Kale and Potato Hash I cooked up last week. I can see this one being perfect for Kale Chips too.
In another summery harvest, I found a couple of ripe Jimmy Nardello peppers last week. They’re hanging out with a Romanesco zucchini in the below photo. Jimmy is one of the first peppers to ripen in my garden, and that had me checking other pepper plants as well.
I found about eight or so green pepperoncini peppers setting on. I decided to harvest them and try pickling a few. I didn’t can them, I just made a brine and stuck the jar in the frig. I got the seeds for it from Pinetree, where it is listed as an Italian Pepperoncini. Margaret (Homegrown – Adventures in my Garden) grew this one last year, and it did well for her, which prompted me to try it this year myself. I am hoping it will be nicely pickled by later this week when I plan on making pizza. I’ve been looking for a pepperoncini that’s like the kind our pizzerias serve with pizza, and I was tickled pink last year when I saw Margaret had found one! I also have a Greek Pepperoncini (seeds from Refining Fire Chiles) but it is not setting on peppers just yet.
Harvest Monday is a day to show off your harvests, how you are saving your harvest, or how you are using your harvest. If you have a harvest you want to share, add your name and blog link to Mr Linky below. And be sure and check out what everyone is harvesting!
Another great harvest, Dave. Those ripe tomatoes make me envious. The first couple of mine are just beginning to turn colour now, but it will be a while before I have a significant harvest of them. The only one I have in common with you is Supersweet 100. Does it live up to its name? All your crops seem to grow a lot quicker than mine. I have lots of the same things – kale, cucumbers, blueberries, chillis etc – but mostly they are way behind yours. The penalty of our dismal “Summer” weather, I suppose. 🙁
I have grown Supersweet 100 for years now and it is one my favorite cherry tomatoes.
I can only dream of harvesting blueberries in the amounts that you do.
It’s been a poor brassica year for us. The conditions should have suited them but the slugs won’t let them grow.
All my lettuce bolted in the relentless sweltering heat not to mention dry. I should try growing summer lettuce yours look lovely and tender. Do you prefer one company’s seeds over another?
I get lettuce seeds from several different companies. Wild Garden Seeds has a large selection of lettuce varieties, and I think Fedco prices can’t be beat. I find both have good quality seeds.
I have been pleased with Fedco seeds, never tried Wild Garden Seeds will look into for next year.
So many beautiful things! Two gallons of blueberries is really impressive, and you’re not done yet! I’m intrigued by the Garden Gem tomatoes. Are they determinate? I will certainly look into them.
Garden Gem is determinate, and fruit are Roma sized or slightly smaller. The ones I tasted had a nice balance of acid/sweet flavor. It’s a great size for salads.
My blueberry plant died from lack of watering earlier in the year, hoping it comes back next year. But still, I was only getting a few. 13 pounds is amazing! And love those Jimmy Nardello’s, I didn’t get any of those plants this year so missing out. What a wonderful harvest this week.
I bought a spiralizer last year but didn’t have a chance to use it. Hoping I get some zucchini soon as that looks really good.
I’ve been using the spiralizer for zucchini and cucumbers. The shape of the veggies is nice for holding a dressing or sauce, much like spaghetti does. It worked well with the pesto for sure!
Great summer harvest. You are way ahead of me. All my lettuce is harvested or bolted so no salads for awhile. I love the Jimmy Nardellos too, they are the first to ripen in my garden, except this year that title goes to the Hungarian Paprika.
I go through this every year – enviously watching tomatoes come rolling in in warmer climates while my tomato plants and I sit in the fog and wait for the weather to warm up. But, at least my lettuce is happy (not that I’m harvesting any at the moment but the new plants are looking good). Like Margaret, I have yet to pull out my new spiralizer and try the zoodles. Your salad looks great and I have a surfeit of basil at the moment so I will have to try your recipe.
Sorry, I meant to say Susie!
Thank you for putting in the links to other garden bloggers and previous posts you’ve done on a topic. I learn of so many new varieties and garden and kitchen methods. Such a harvest of blueberries–to measure in pounds! I’m happy to count mine before using in a fruit salad or on cereal. I have a head of cabbage in the fridge and think I might venture into the fermentation world using your method. I’m having garden envy as my raised beds are being deconstructed to make way for new ones :-/
Love the blueberries so I agree with your wife. We’ll be looking at planting our fall crops soon; lettuce, cabbage, kale, etc. We don’t go for quite the variety you do though. Have tough enough time just keeping it somewhat weeded.
You’re miles ahead of us… it’s been cloudy almost all spring/summer here in the Northwest.
Also, that Greek Turkey Meatballs recipe looks like a real winner. Thanks!
Your wife took a very lovely photo of the blueberries. Thirteen pounds is a lot of blueberries to pick! The Garden Gem tomatoes sound interesting. Can you save the seeds or are they hybrids? Are they good for sauce making? I’m always on the look out for disease resistant tomatoes.
The Garden Gem is a hybrid. I haven’t had enough of them to try cooking them, but the UFl folks talk about using them for sauce. They are a juicy tomato though, more like an Early Girl.
What an amazing variety, hooray summer. Your photos are particularly delicious-looking this week too, I think it might be the range of colours. Beautiful blueberries by your wife (and a fantastic harvest). The tomatoes are really interesting….I’m not too far off my first tomato harvest, definitely this week sometime.
If I was your wife, I’d insist on equal time for the blueberries, too. They’re beautiful. As are those Artisan tomatoes. Seeing your zucchini noodles with pesto makes me think I might have to change my mind about what I was going to do with my zucchini.
I love seeing all the harvesting goodness that goes on. You have some fun things growing. Those cute squashes at the beginning intrigue me. Are they a summer squash or a winter squash?
The white round squash are an heirloom summer squash called White Scallop (or Patty Pan). I got the seeds from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds.
Your tomatoes and cucumbers look perfect. I grew Jimmy Nardello this year as well, but it’ll be a long time before we get any ripe peppers.
Your zucchini salad looks so good, and that blueberry bounty sounds amazing. Berries are a lot of work to pick but so worth it.