Even though the garden is showing the ravages of a time-worn summer, we have been given the great gift of plants newly coming into harvest. We planted in March, reaped much of our harvest in early July (an abundance of corn, a few green beans, squash, tomatoes, chiles, and a couple of bell peppers). The bean plants died back after giving a handful of wizened beans, and we lost the squash plants then, too. The onions didn’t do at all well. The second planting of onions doesn’t like me any better than the first, and I am left feeling like crying over underdeveloped onions, leeks, and scallions. I have yet to discover my problem with them. I am consoled by my first experience with garlic, however. I had beautiful garlic—I wish I had planted a quadruple quantity of it. I’ll be planting in late October, or early November, and try the onions, again, too.
My, my ever-so-hardworking hubby replanted corn after first harvest, and our corn is standing tall and gorgeous, even though we didn’t get complete germination of the planted seeds. Tucked in among the corn, the new beans are beautiful—riotously so. We have a rainbow of bean colors and ate the first of them tonight. Two shades of green, creamy yellow, and deep purple “green” beans were lovingly washed, cut into bite-sized pieces, sautéed with onions, chiles, and two kinds of summer squash. I turned them into a skillet frittata with some delicious organic, humanely-raised chicken eggs. Yum. Double yum. Dinner’s all done.
The cucumbers had to be replanted but we are getting generous numbers of Armenian cukes, now, a few tiny watermelons, and several kinds of squash. The carrots are dallying, the strawberry bed is filling out (we had several pints this summer, but will have more as the bed fills in). We anticipate the day when our avocado trees will start producing, perhaps in another two years. We get to harvest our first asparagus next spring! Blessed, blessed anticipation of harvest, even while enjoying the waning of this one.
The tomatoes are still giving abundantly, though the poor plants look their seasonal age (about 95-years-old, after a lifetime of sunburns)—cherry, black plum, and Roma tomatoes vie for my attention. We’ll probably get plenty of them through October, unless an early frost cuts them down. I still have the opportunity to can the tomatoes I have promised myself to preserve since July. The chiles have been sparse and not picante at all. And, all of a sudden, both the bell pepper plants and the chiles pasillas plants have uncountable numbers of small fruits. I want someone to explain their late arrival to me.
Tonight, we invited the neighbors over for a harvest visit, to share the bounty of figs, tomatoes, and peaches. It is such a delight to share what we produce on our little city lot.
Eat lots of fruits and vegetables. Grow your own. Buy organic. Buy local. Enjoy your famers’ market. Savor your seasonal food.