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New England, July 2015

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  sanderson on 7/5/2015, 9:54 pm

NHG, For strawberry jam you only need a hot water bath. I am making peach jam tonight. I don't have the nerve for the pressure canner yet.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  NHGardener on 7/5/2015, 10:42 pm

@sanderson wrote:NHG,  For strawberry jam you only need a hot water bath.  I am making peach jam tonight.  I don't have the nerve for the pressure canner yet.  

Ooh! Peach jam!

From what I gather, you simmer the jars first in submerged water, then you pour the jam into the warm jars, and then you seal and boil them for 5 more minutes, then let them sit on the counter for 12-24 hrs. and make sure the seal is down.

Lots of hot items to work with - the hot jam, getting the jars out of the water.... would help to have tongs...

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  camprn on 7/5/2015, 10:49 pm


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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  NHGardener on 7/5/2015, 11:00 pm

There they are. That looks like strawberry jam.

I think I might have to make do with a sauce ladle and fish the jars out of there.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  camprn on 7/5/2015, 11:06 pm

@NHGardener wrote:There they are. That looks like strawberry jam.

I think I might have to make do with a sauce ladle and fish the jars out of there.
Play it safe, get the proper jar lifter.
http://www.amazon.com/Norpro-600-Jar-Lifter/dp/B000HJBFGC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1436151822&sr=8-1&keywords=mason+jar+lifter&pebp=1436151939548&perid=1MT8KTWPFR34GA9J42NJ



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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  NHGardener on 7/5/2015, 11:09 pm

Very nice! I'll put that on the list. But the strawberries will be soup by then. I think I can make do. Our forefathers must have done it somehow. LOL.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  quiltbea on 7/5/2015, 11:11 pm


Hooray!  I right clicked and went down the list and hit a few different things that didn't work, but finally hit 'refresh' and the block opened to host my images.   It pays to play with your computer sometimes.
The picture above is one of my Red Zebra tomatoes with its net bag over the very beginnings of the first blossoms on the plant.  I've bagged both plants because I just love the flavor and the size and the look of Red Zebras.  They are outstanding IMHO.  I want to grow more of them next year.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  quiltbea on 7/5/2015, 11:13 pm


Does anyone have broccoli to harvest yet?  I'll be harvesting mine tomorrow and then await the new little ones that form on the outside stems.  I was waiting for the family to all get home from the Holiday trips.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  sanderson on 7/6/2015, 4:41 am

Jar lifters at Kmart, Walmart and Target. Also, little magnetic wand to pick up the lids from the hot water, about a dollar.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  sdugas164 on 7/6/2015, 7:47 am

Nhg, you can freeze jam. And you can do it in mason jars. No need to boil and last about 6 mths. And you can use less sugar or honey in them. I do a couple jars like that and boil the rest.  But if you wanna can you can get an intro to canning set for like $20 at the big box stores. Has a basket, lifters and other thing needed.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  NHGardener on 7/6/2015, 8:07 am

QB - You're already harvesting broccoli? Wow! Those look beautiful. Did you have them covered from the cabbage moth?

Magnetic lid sticks! Great idea. And thanks about the info for the big box stores too. It helps to be all set up. I'll have to visit the preserving part of the forum, because preserving is a whole new ball of wax.

You can freeze mason jars? I didn't know that. (Yup, I'm sure you have to cool them completely first.)

I'm using the 8 oz. jars right now, so they're really small, which is helpful for first timing I think.

Going to be hot this week! We haven't been really hot since I think May? Hope the peppers take off.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  camprn on 7/6/2015, 8:19 am

Freezer jars are wide mouthed and tapered. Do not use small mouth jars for freezing or the mess will be huge.


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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books

Outlander is outstanding!


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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  AtlantaMarie on 7/6/2015, 8:53 am

@camprn wrote:
Play it safe, get the proper jar lifter.
http://www.amazon.com/Norpro-600-Jar-Lifter/dp/B000HJBFGC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1436151822&sr=8-1&keywords=mason+jar+lifter&pebp=1436151939548&perid=1MT8KTWPFR34GA9J42NJ



I agree!  MUCH easier to use that.  If a jar is full and slips...  well... burns, mess to clean up...  Not worth it.

Sanderson, I had my pressure canner for 3 years before I got up the courage to try it.  But I LOVE it now!  It's just a matter of trying it and following the instructions.  (I'm even teaching a pressure canning class at our area BOW convention in Nov.)

If anyone is doing canning for the first time and wants to talk it thru, send me an email or PM & I'll get with you.


QB - that broccoli looks great!

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  CAgirlinMA on 7/6/2015, 9:52 am

@quiltbea wrote:
Does anyone have broccoli to harvest yet?  I'll be harvesting mine tomorrow and then await the new little ones that form on the outside stems.  I was waiting for the family to all get home from the Holiday trips.
Looking good QB. My broccoli is doing wonderful but it's not ready to harvest just yet. How do you keep the moths off of your broccoli? I've had mine covered from day 1 & I see that darned cabbage moth everywhere.

Can you explain the netting process on your tomatoes? How do the seeds stay in the bag & what kind of bag is it?

Learning so many cool things here. Cool

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  boffer on 7/6/2015, 10:42 am

@sanderson wrote:... I don't have the nerve for the pressure canner yet.  

A lot of people feel that way.  When we were teaching ourselves, my wife put on a full-faced shield and a leather welding apron!  (And I stood behind her!)

After the second batch, I said, 'this is silly'.  A pressure cooker works at less pressure than a car's cooling system, and I've taken off hundreds of radiator caps when the motor was hot.  Instantly, the apprehension was gone, and replaced with the healthy respect for any tool that has a remote chance of injuring.

It was my wife's idea to try canning, and she did it all the first year.  The next year, she had no time, so it was up to me.  I hadn't paid much attention to the details of the canning process, so I invited my 80 year old neighbor over to hold my hand.  The hardest part was using the jar tongs to remove the hot jars from the canner.  It just didn't feel right; I was sure I was going to drop a jar.

It wasn't until the third batch when she nonchalantly said that, in her experience, most people hold the tongs by the other end.  I'd been using the tongs backwards! dangit    I asked why she didn't say something sooner, and she said, 'You seem to know what you're doing, so I thought I might learn something new!'   Razz

I've had a number of gardening related DUH moments, but that one tops the list!

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  NHGardener on 7/6/2015, 11:05 am

Great story, boffer!

Why do so many of us suffer from canningphobia?

If the hot water and glass don't get ya, the botulism will. Smile

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  quiltbea on 7/6/2015, 11:41 am

I transplanted out my Broccs on April 27th and haven't had any cabbage moth issues at all.  I had my light-weight row cover ready in case it was needed, but now I'm happy to report I wasn't.   Usually I lay cover over my broccs to defeat the moths.  This particular variety, Premium Crop, didn't grow as tall before forming heads so its earlier.


CAgirl........Seed Saving for tomatoes is simple.  Make drawstring net bags or cut some light-weight row cover to make them.  When buds just start to form in a cluster at the top of your tomato plants, or peppers for that matter, place a bag over them and close snugly around the branch stem to keep out any insects.   You have to cover them BEFORE they fully form so you know the insects haven't pollinated them before you.
You want to cover the earliest tomatoes so they get a chance to ripen fully.
Keep the bag fluffed so there's room in there to grow and its away from the blossoms so bugs outside the netting can't pollinate.  Tap those unopened buds inside the bag a couple times a day to pollinate them since the bugs can't do it for you.   The bag lets in sunshine and rain so the fruit will grow when ready.
When the little tomatoes start to form, remove the bag.  The tomatoes on that particular branch will breed true next year.  I usually save seeds from the biggest of the tomatoes on that branch, only one or two.   Mark that branch with something so you know which tomato/tomatoes to save when the time comes.  I use a red strip of fabric tied to the branch near the stem so its easily found among the greenery.
Let the tomatoes ripen fully.   Harvest when fully ripe and take the next steps. 
The same method works for peppers, too.
I'll probably be posting pics on the Tomato Tues so folks can follow the method.

Above I've bagged a Mountain Gold.  This one is supposed to now be open-pollinated having been bred down from a hybrid several generations ago but who knows if it will breed true.  I'll find out next year.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  CapeCoddess on 7/6/2015, 1:03 pm

@quiltbea wrote:
Does anyone have broccoli to harvest yet?  I'll be harvesting mine tomorrow and then await the new little ones that form on the outside stems.  I was waiting for the family to all get home from the Holiday trips.
Shocked
Nope, all I have are leaves on bolted plants.  Guess I should add broccoli to my 'do not bother ever again' list since I've tried 3 times now.  Maybe it would work better as a fall crop here.

Those are beautiful, QB!

That's a really funny canning story, boffer! You can also use the tongs sideways to move them around on the counter when being placed for cooling.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  sanderson on 7/6/2015, 2:04 pm

Boffer, Great story. I think gardening and associated activities provide funny stories. This Forum provides an opportunity to share these little stories. Sometimes, friends or family are just not into gardening, etc., and have no appreciation for the subtleties.

I opened my mother's pressure canner to check on dinner and sent the lid flying. At this age, I don't want to have a senior moment like that, at least not without husband in the house.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  mollyhespra on 7/6/2015, 3:24 pm

OK, I  think it is time for the "2015 Challenge Your Fears Pressure-Can-Along".  We talked about it earlier this year (I think it was in Feb), so maybe it's time.  I'll start a new thread.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/6/2015, 3:26 pm

Uh oh! I hope you didn't get yourself or your kitchen decorated with hot splatters.

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  CapeCoddess on 7/6/2015, 5:21 pm

@mollyhespra wrote:OK, I  think it is time for the "2015 Challenge Your Fears Pressure-Can-Along".  We talked about it earlier this year (I think it was in Feb), so maybe it's time.  I'll start a new thread.

I love that idea & pressure canning. Maybe we could also touch on water bath canning, which terrifies me. pale

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  camprn on 7/6/2015, 6:20 pm

@CapeCoddess wrote:
@mollyhespra wrote:OK, I  think it is time for the "2015 Challenge Your Fears Pressure-Can-Along".  We talked about it earlier this year (I think it was in Feb), so maybe it's time.  I'll start a new thread.

I love that idea & pressure canning.  Maybe we could also touch on water bath canning, which terrifies me. pale
CC, what about the boiling water bath scares you?

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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  CapeCoddess on 7/7/2015, 12:50 pm

I'm afraid I won't kill all the pathogens. Also, I'm a klutz and I always get burnt when cooking, so messing around with boiling jars and lids would bite me fersure. I know with pressure canning the temps are so high that everything dies and I feel safe with it. And there's no boiling of the jars.
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Re: New England, July 2015

Post  NHGardener on 7/7/2015, 1:46 pm

My fears exactly, CC! CADS (Canning Anxiety Disorder Syndrome) We need a canning therapist. Very Happy

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Re: New England, July 2015

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