It’s time once again for Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. We finally got a break from the heat last week, and bit of much needed rain. We are still in a deficit for rainfall, but what we got will certainly help. The berries are winding down now, and the blueberries have been smaller than usual but plentiful. The squashes are planted in weed barrier fabric, and that seems to have helped conserve soil moisture and keep yields at usual levels. I pulled the last of the kohlrabi last week, and I will prep the bed for a fall planting. We got over 27 pounds of it this spring, which compares well with last year’s harvests.
It’s been a great year so far for squash, and they are featured in many meals. We have zucchini, yellow squash, Korean avocado and Centercut that we used as summer squash. Goldilocks and Honey Bear are the first of the winter types to mature for us. Since the acorn squash is not a long keeping type, we are eating them now while we have them. I’m not a big fan of stuffing them, so I cut them in half and roast with a little butter and honey or maple syrup for seasoning.
Eggplant is also doing very well for us so far this year. Icicle is a new AAS Winner that makes large and mild tasting white fruits. These are from container plants, but I have one planted in-ground that is just now blooming. So far the harvests have been from the container plants, but the main crop varieties should be coming on soon.
I used some of the Fairy Tale and Gretel eggplant for a side dish we had for lunch yesterday. I made a spinach/mushroom/egg quesadilla, and sauteed the diced eggplant on the side. I added fresh basil and grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese to the eggplant at the end, and didn’t skimp on the olive oil. It wound up stealing the show!
The summer flowers are lighting up our gardens with color. I have a few sunflowers in the vegetable garden, including this Ring of Fire which is one of my favorites.
We have several Hardy Hibiscus that we planted in the last couple of years. They are beginning to bloom now, and though the blooms only last a day they are glorious when they are open. I have Ballet Slippers growing in a container, and it has ruffled white flowers with a deep red center and a pink blush.
The native Ratibida pinnata (Grayheaded coneflower) has been growing for several years in our Wild Garden, and towers above most of the other flowers. It is popular with bees and butterflies. I leave the spent flowers for the birds, and goldfinches are especially fond of them.
I continue to ‘play’ with the new trail camera, using it to monitor wildlife at night. I didn’t need it one morning though, when I came upon two skunks while on my way to the vegetable garden. I’m not as close as the photo might suggest, and I kept my distance as they eventually trotted off into the woods behind our house. One seemed to be a juvenile, but it was hard to tell for sure.
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 please take a minute and check out what everyone is harvesting!
We have just one ripe blackberry As for the squash it’s a problem keeping them watered as they soon wilt, We are picking blueberries though.
Boy, that eggplant dish does look good. With harvests like this, I can bet you eat squash with almost every meal!
I even snuck a bit in the quesadilla!
Wow Dave, it is not often I have the same as you… even if is it the sunflower!! Such a colourful harvest you have this week!
Always enjoy seeing the flowers in addition to the vegetables.I didn’t remember that the hardy hibiscus flowers only last a day–the same as our tender ones. I so enjoy seeing the goldfinches hanging off seed heads. Worth the untidyness in the garden.
On a cloudy day, the hibiscus flowers sometimes start to close in the afternoon.
Love your Ring of Fire sunflower and the skunk pic.
It is cool to see the skunks Lou – just not too close!