Welcome to this week’s update.
Here’s a shot of one day’s harvest. There’s a bunch of Amish paste tomatoes in there. I’ll make them into tomato paste late in the week or over the weekend. I’m not sure of the zucchini, we will probably cook it up for dinner. I was excited to harvest some peppers. These are the first of my bell peppers of the year. There are a couple of smaller peppers, but I’m happy with the size of them. Normally I end up with tiny peppers, these are a little bigger but nowhere near as large as store bought peppers.
The six garden beds that had the peas in them were sitting empty the past couple of weeks. Well, there was a lot of weeds in 5 of them and cilantro in the other one. We have been planning on increasing the depth of the garden beds since right now most of them are only 6″ tall. We decided it was time to do that with these beds before planting beans in them. So the other day, my wife and daughter started weeding beds and my son and I started building the extensions. It was certainly hot work, the temperatures hit about 95F that day.
That bed that I mentioned above that constantly reseeds itself with cilantro had gone to seed. Many people don’t realize that when cilantro goes to seed, that seed is just coriander. It is weird because I’ve seen packets of seed listed as coriander and packets of cilantro seed. I decided that since I had to tear up the cilantro that I would harvest the seed. I gathered the seed from about 20 plants and now have more coriander than I can use. I still need to winnow the seed to get it clean, but I’m ready to use some of it. I believe that I’ll use some of it to brew a Belgian Wit.
I fill my garden beds with a lot of compost. My county has a great composting facility. I can get a 5×8 trailer full of compost for just $10. It is made with yard waste, so is just what I’d make in my yard. That brings me to this guy. The trailer is sitting along side of the garden. Every time I walk past, I saw this girl flying around it. She would land and look like she was stinging the pile. I searched for this wasp but couldn’t find it. Then I went to What’s That Bug and right on the front page was a shot of a Mydas fly. She lays her eggs in compost and the larvae prey on the larvae or other bugs. They really like June bugs, so that’s a good thing. I’ll take a second to recommend What’s That Bug to anyone looking for a bug identification. They are great. There’s also great pictures of the various bugs.
Finally, I made some zucchini relish. I’m in the process of creating a post about making this relish. I will say that it smelled really good while I was making it. The chunks of red pepper and green zucchini skin make it very attractive. I’m not a huge relish fan, but my wife loves it, so I needed to give it a try. Not to mention that it is time for me to find new ways to use zucchini.
That’s what was happening on my homestead this week. What’s happening on yours?