Monday, September 30, 2013

What happened to September?

The season has changed.  Chris and I pulled up the roma tomato plants this morning bringing home both the green and red fruits.  Interestingly the Heatwave tomatoes, which we chose for there ability to flower and produce when the weather is too hot for the other tomatoes, are still growing strong.  We had quite a few plants of various heirlooms this year give up after only 1 or 2 ripened fruits (black krim, mr stripey, cherokee green) and our brandywines are large and uniformly unripe, the plants still vigorous even in the cooling weather.  Green tomato pickles are in our future I suspect.

Some of our peppers are alternately scorched or scabby - and others are perfect.  The chilis are still going strong.  Yellow squash is still trying to produce, despite the powdery mildew covering the leaves.

Rhiannon and I picked 4 ripe Long Island Cheese squash this weekend, the vines were wilted and ghostly looking.  Indica's Flat White pumpkin is still vigorous in its attempt to take over the hill it was planted on.  She has picked 2 pumpkins so far - there may be more in the sea of green leaves covering 1/3 of our Ppatch garden.

With the 2 green Long Island Cheese we found I took a page from The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder and made green pumpkin pie filling.  The squash was peeled, seeded and sliced thin and tossed with a mixture of sugar and spiced usually reserved for apple pie.  This was then frozen for later as Rhiannon & I are only on The Banks of Plum Creek and still have another book to go before getting to the chapter about said pie.  We will bake it then.

The rabbits are ready to be processed, but Chris and I have decided to wait another couple weeks to let them get a little larger before butchering.  Luna should kindle any day now with her new litter.

The hens are all laying now.  The new Amerucana's eggs are extra large, a couple have had double yolks.  The Welsumer, with its dark brown shells, are also extra large.  But I realized we have no white egg layers.  Rhiannon's silver Campine was found dead of unknown causes the other day.  She was saddened, but stoic, admitting that the chicks she purchased are somewhere in the ambiguous area between pets and livestock in her mind.

There are 20 quarts of Chicken stock along with 12 pints of apple butter in the cupboard.  Our 7 cu ft freezer is 1/2 full with whole tomatoes awaiting the colder days of November to be canned.

Two of the four $5 apple trees in the Ppatch survived the summer - we don't know yet about the 2 rhubarb plants Mom brought us from MN.  Both fruit trees I got for my birthday survived, although we will move one in the spring to a better spot.

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