|First thing to harvest in the spring as |
always are dandelions
for jelly and, this year, MEAD!
|My sad little broccoli.|
|The main head was smaller than the |
side shoots I cut a month later.
I was very unimpressed.
|The first strawberries of the year were|
delicious and only lasted about 2 hours with
the boys here.
|Rhubarb cobbler was really big here this year, everyone|
but RAT really enjoys it.
My rhubarb, of which I have 6 plants, went crazy this year.
I gave away two plants to neighbors,
3 gallons to friends and family and still froze over 4 gallons.
|Oh, and I used it here.|
|And here, Rhu-berry Jam, or strawberry rhubarb jam.|
In total, I made and canned 14 pints of this yumminess.
(MAT was a big helper with the stirring, the for-e-ver stirring.)
|Then came the beets.|
Last year my father started growing these for me.
This year, I brought home 30-ish pounds worth,
or a keg tub full.
|Beets and Rhu-berry Jam|
Then the black raspberries came on, and it was a glorious season. Unfortunately, when we were digging out dirt to put in our pool, I didn't mention the pool yet, but we have one...where was I? Oh, right, When we were removing fill, Mr. T thought MY black raspberry patch looked like a great place to dump 1 ton of fill. So MY raspberries were shit this season. Thankfully my parents had an abundance of raspberries free for the picking, so the boys and I made the trip and made off like bandits.
|Just about 2 gallons of black raspberries picked by MAT and myself one mild June morning.|
This made 8 pints of jam and 8 pints of black raspberry syrup, which is SINFULLY good.
About two days after the raspberry picking, sweet cherries went on sale at the grocery, so I bought 25 lbs. I made sweet pie filling, danish sauce, and syrup.
I have made a lot of syrups this season, partially because MAT, being 10, has found a love of making pancakes, which I wholeheartedly support, because he's better at it than I am. And partially because I have found a love of mixing homemade syrups with Seltzer water.
Also, have lovely syrups to drizzle over things encourages me to bake things, like this poundcake.
|The syrups were fresh off the stove and absolutely the best breakfast we had all summer...I mean...yes we had cake for breakfast, and we don't regret it. Sometimes, moms and sons need cake for breakfast.|
|It was SO good. |
Yes, I did lick the plate and spoons after I snapped this photo.
Then it was July, and it brought the heat and stopped the rains, which started in April and fell nearly every day, yes, really, for months. But it did stop, finally.
One particularly lovely morning, before it climbed above 80, while my kiddos still slept, before I drank coffee, I threw on my long sleeves, jeans, big boots, and hosed myself down with bug spray. I grabbed my baskets and went off to forage. I have been learning a lot about wild edibles over the last several months and have been paying closer attention to what grows on our property and the unsprayed local roadways. Staghorn Sumac grows with abundance EVERYWHERE around here. It lines the roadway both north and south of our property as well as growing along our own tree lines.
|DOT is a VERY helpful garden helper this year. Really.|
He truly helps with every task. He's growing SO fast.
Sorry it was fast and dirty. Maybe next year I will be on it and be able to get you the individual play by play.
And now, before I return to my very abundant apples and Naked Neighbor pears (also, silly style abundant this season) I leave you with some gratuitous kiddo photos. Because they grew a lot in the time I've been away, and they have new tricks!
MAT, at 10 and 1/2, cooks a variety of delicious things including eggs, pancakes, grilled cheese, soup, and spaghetti.
RAT sticks to only breakfast classics.
And DOT, Mr. T, and I, reap all the benefits.
Be prepared, apple, pear, and honey harvest posts are coming.