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Building the garden and first year results.

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Building the garden and first year results.

Post  MidTNJasonF on 3/6/2010, 12:37 am

I put in four 4' X 4' plots last year and thought I would share some photos. Some of my results were good and some were less than spectacular but it was all rewarding.

Building up the Frames.



My assistant checks it out.



Approximate final locations



We are growing now. (overview from the deck)







My wife thought I was crazy at first. Then she thought I was some sort of genius.





Some of the pepper harvest.



Other harvested items


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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  MidTNJasonF on 3/6/2010, 12:49 am

I am also proud of a couple of my other growing creations including this hanging basket.

Caladiums in the center with creeping thyme surrounding that and over flowing the sides. A cherry tomato plant growing from the bottom upside down.





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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  MidTNJasonF on 3/6/2010, 12:53 am

I also had a few shots of the salsa canning and pickle making.











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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  boffer on 3/6/2010, 2:03 am

Great pictorial-thanks for posting. I love your table full of peppers.

Do you roast your peppers whole before putting them in the salsa? We're looking for something different to do with our salsa this year.

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  happyfrog on 3/6/2010, 7:27 am

wow!

guess since you weren't weeding you had more time for canning! *grin*

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Too Beautiful

Post  greneteam on 3/6/2010, 9:26 am

Thanks for the beautiful photos and the challenging (Work) canning of the veggies.
Here I go with more ammo than I need to teach the kids..Food comes from the Earth no always from Publix.(I created all the Tile murals for Publix supermarkets here in Florida) Hope this doesn't hurt their business/sales..LOL Pati Mills Tile Muralist..now Gardner for SFG...

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  Lavender Debs on 3/6/2010, 9:34 am

Beautiful job Jason. I am overwhelmed.

I don't can salsa, I only make it fresh, but when I do I grill the peppers AND the tomatoes, onions (cut into thick slices and skewered) and garlic (skewered with the onions) on a grill with a smoke box. Make sure to save the caramelized juices that come off of the tomatoes. Lightly peel the peppers (a little black in the salsa is ok, but I don't want grey salsa). Whirr it in the food processor with lime, cilantro, and salt. Try and get you some before everyone else discovers that smoky goodness.

Looking forward to seeing more.

Deborah ....wondering if she ordered jalapenos and anchos this year??

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  boffer on 3/6/2010, 9:44 am

Sounds good, Deb. I like spicy warm and my wife prefers sweeter-maybe smokey flavor will be a good compromise this year.

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  jerzyjen on 3/6/2010, 9:46 am

Wow! Great Job. Your assistant is adorable too. And I am so jealous of that gorgeous green grass beside your boxes in the middle of growing season - I ended up fencing around and mulching around my boxes because of how disgusting my grass is (that and i didnt need to be covered in stickerburrs everytime i hit the garden - those things are EVIL).

Wow and that pot of salsa makes me wanna run and grab some chips right now! My goal this year is to have a healthy enough harvest to do that and then learn how to do it. I'd like to learn how to preserve and jar sliced jalapenos to eat throughout the year.

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  Lavender Debs on 3/6/2010, 10:15 am

Boff my husband has never liked hot either. I think the southern peppers simply have better flavor then bells. Roasting the peppers brings out more flavor then heat (scrape out the seeds and membrane before putting them into the FP) He isn't so afraid of them now that he can taste them. He still doesn't like hot but he loves this salsa.

You are in Washington? There is a restaurant in Lynnwood called Chevys. We had their regular table salsa and went home to a salsa making marathon until we got it right. Take your lady out to dinner to see if you like this salsa.

When we are camping we grill it over the fire pit, chop it up and impress our fellow campers. (Just trying to find something besides s’mores, hotdogs and potatoes to roast)

Deborah ....thanking Jason for the left turn on his thread.

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Deb

Post  boffer on 3/6/2010, 10:38 am

LOL Yeah, I'm in Yelm. I ate at Chevy's in Tacoma once-had the blackened catfish. I think that was the best fish I've ever eaten-even better than fresh salmon or halibut on the grill.

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  MidTNJasonF on 3/6/2010, 1:09 pm

@boffer wrote:Great pictorial-thanks for posting. I love your table full of peppers.

Do you roast your peppers whole before putting them in the salsa? We're looking for something different to do with our salsa this year.

Yes I roast most of my peppers for both fresh salsa and canned salsa. I started doing it because it was a easy way to peel and seed them. Some have tougher skins that hold up through the cooking and canning process and I do not like that in the end product. When you roast them them in a plastic bag they steam themselves and peel easy like blanching and skinning tomatoes. In the end I also really like the flavor as well. It is more apparent in the fresh stuff.

I do a fresh salsa with roasted peppers, onions, garlic, and corn that was roasted in the hush on the grill. Wonderful stuff.

That pic of the peppers on the table is one of my favorites. The colors are great.

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  MidTNJasonF on 3/6/2010, 1:14 pm

@happyfrog wrote:wow!

guess since you weren't weeding you had more time for canning! *grin*

That was only the first of three rounds of canning. My parents live next to a peach orchard in West Tennessee and I put up over 40lbs of peaches last year in addition to three cases of salsa.

I gave pepper jelly, salsa, pickles, and peaches away for Christmas gifts last year. I made up baskets with a few bottles of wine and some sweets my wife and I baked the day before. It was a phenomenal hit with everyone.

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  MidTNJasonF on 3/6/2010, 1:20 pm

@jerzyjen wrote:Wow! Great Job. Your assistant is adorable too. And I am so jealous of that gorgeous green grass beside your boxes in the middle of growing season - I ended up fencing around and mulching around my boxes because of how disgusting my grass is (that and i didnt need to be covered in stickerburrs everytime i hit the garden - those things are EVIL).

Wow and that pot of salsa makes me wanna run and grab some chips right now! My goal this year is to have a healthy enough harvest to do that and then learn how to do it. I'd like to learn how to preserve and jar sliced jalapenos to eat throughout the year.

Thanks, My grass is a horrible mix of fescue and bermuda that has creeped over from my neighbors through the years. It looks good at certain points but is a hodge podge of brown and green during the in-between seasons.

My assistant is a 10 year old Black and Tan Dachshund named Daphne. She has a rescued brother who is about 8 named Frank also Black, Tan, and rotten.


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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  Theresa on 3/6/2010, 3:13 pm

BEAUTIFUL GARDENS!!
Everything looks soooo good!


Love those little doggies too!

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Canning a lost art?

Post  middlemamma on 4/30/2010, 12:38 am

I am 33...never canned a thing, never saw my mother can a thing. I thin kboth my grandmothers did it but I never saw them, just remember being sent home with good stuff like homemade relish etc. ANy experts here on the forum that share this art? ANy reccommended book? What kind of tools do you need to can things? I am new to Idaho and we have wonderful fruit here in the summer. Last year I went overboard and had to throw out some of the most wonderful peaches I have ever had in my life because we just could not eat another one. Would have been nice if I had had a clue on how to can them huh?

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Amazon search

Post  miinva on 4/30/2010, 1:20 am

An Amazon search for canning books came up with a list of them. My mother-in-law gave me the big blue Ball Canning Book, but I've barely scratched the surface (we made some refrigerator pickles and some jelly with fruit juice). Luckily one of the other mother's in my son's Cub Scout den cans every year and she's invited me to join her! How nerdy is it that I'm excited about it? Smile

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Canning a Lost Art

Post  timwardell on 4/30/2010, 10:16 am

@middlemamma wrote:I am 33...never canned a thing, never saw my mother can a thing. I thin kboth my grandmothers did it but I never saw them, just remember being sent home with good stuff like homemade relish etc. ANy experts here on the forum that share this art? ANy reccommended book? What kind of tools do you need to can things? I am new to Idaho and we have wonderful fruit here in the summer. Last year I went overboard and had to throw out some of the most wonderful peaches I have ever had in my life because we just could not eat another one. Would have been nice if I had had a clue on how to can them huh?

Try this site: http://americanhomecanning.com/
AMERICAN HOME CANNING
Preserving An American Kitchen Tradition And Skill For The Next Generation

They have several videos on YouTube. Here's one to start with:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNgDDE7S3FI

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  middlemamma on 4/30/2010, 3:46 pm

Thanks guys! I'll start looking into it. I know I can always do a search. But it's nice when people can kinda point you in the right direction and helps cut back on so many trial and error, and sometimes costly mistakes. Smile

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  camprn on 4/30/2010, 3:52 pm

If you use the search feature of the forum, there are a few threads that may be helpful to you. Try this link. Very Happy


Last edited by camprn on 4/30/2010, 4:03 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  MidTNJasonF on 5/1/2010, 2:09 pm

I can offer a suggestion on the peaches. I do can some just to eat during the year, great on a slice of chocolate cake by the way, but I also freeze a lot of peaches. I just lightly blanch, skin and slice them then put them in ziploc freezer bags with a touch of fruit fresh. They can then be made into jam later, put in a batch of homemade icecream, or thrown in the blender for a smoothie.

Canning is really pretty easy. Just do a bit of reading and try a few small batches first. It is a bit labor intensive but worthwhile in my humble opinion.

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Canning

Post  argardener on 5/1/2010, 5:47 pm

This is my 1st year to can as well and I can't wait! I purchased my Ball Blue Book today along with a utensil kit and 21qt Water Bath Cooker. A friend at work told me she would give me jars.

Rebecca

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

Post  quiltbea on 5/1/2010, 10:13 pm

What absolutely fantastic results. I love seeing all that produce you got from your first garden. Wonderful.

I hope to get enuf from my garden to freeze for the winter. I understand freezing is not only easier than canning, but its safer, so want to try it.

Keep up the good work.

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Re: Building the garden and first year results.

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