Saturday, July 27, 2013

Garden Musings: July 27, 2013

Now the fun begins! Planning meals around whatever is ready in the garden. I spent most of last Saturday in the kitchen happily preparing meals for the weekend. I began by making some fresh pesto using basil and garlic harvested from the garden.

Some pesto was reserved for Pesto Bread to serve with dinner. The rest was stored in the refrigerator for a meal later in the week. Since it was so hot, I made the bread in the bread machine rather than turn on the oven.

While the bread was baking, I made the first potato salad of the summer using the beautiful red potatoes harvested last week, dill, chives, and celery from the garden. The potato salad was served on Sunday along with grilled ribs and chicken.

Once the Pesto Bread was finished, I allowed the bread machine to cool for a while, and then used it to make Zucchini Bread with the first Zucchini of the year. My new bread machine has a "Quick Bread" selection that I wanted to try. It tasted pretty good. Not picture worthy however. I will do it again if I wanted to bake a quick bread in hot weather. I would rather quadruple the recipe and bake a couple of breads and some muffins all at once. The extras freeze beautifully.

The rest of the Zucchini was used in a pasta dinner, served with pesto bread, and a garden salad of lettuce, chard, carrots, and celery.

Saturday was predicted to be the last day of hot, humid weather that we've been suffering through last week. Sunday was cooler and much less humid. Perfect for gardening and other yard work.

The grass in between the beds was trimmed, the beds were weeded, and the spent perennial herbs were cut back to allow for a fresh round of growth.

The garlic was harvested and spread out to dry in the sun for a little while:

Then it was brought inside to finish curing in the basement spread out on the seed starting shelves. We run a dehumidifier in the summer to reduce moisture in the basement and I found it is the perfect environment for curing garlic and onions.

The garlic bed was in great need of weeding. Among the weeds were a few volunteer New Zealand Spinach plants. I harvested these and sautéed it with some fresh garlic as a side to lunch. This bed was seeded with carrots for fall after cleaning it up.

The tomatoes are grown along trellis structures made from 2x3s and nylon trellis netting. In addition, I usually loop some twine across the trellis to provide additional support for the growing foliage. Another layer of twine was added to the growing tomatoes.

A lot was accomplished in only a day. It was much easier to work outside once the humidity was reduced. I was glad to catch up on gardening since the week that followed ended up really busy work wise. I've been fortunate to gain some new and exciting clients in the last few weeks and some older clients had some fun projects for me to work on.

As the weekend rolls around again, I have more trimming and weeding to be done in the garden. I have started some fall seeds, and more in need of sowing.

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