Garden Journal ~ September

Busy weekend in the garden, now that the weather seems to be cooperating!

Just in time for the cooling, misting rain, I planted ‘Early Wonder’ beets, considered to be the best beet for greens and a quick producer (in as little as 48 days).  Got a couple of broccoli and two ‘Snow Crown’ cauliflowers, as well as ‘Jade Cross’ Brussels sprouts from the Natural Gardener.  I love Brussels balls but have never grown them… after seeing last fall’s grocery store prizes, I decided to give them a try. For edible flowers I planted a calendula, which I love, and seeded ‘Cherries Jubilee’ nasturtium,  a variety that’s new to me and and alleged hummingbird magnet with an unusual color bloom, from light to deep rosy -red.

"Topsy Turvy" planter, AKA the Troy Experiment, with cherry tomato.

We also planted a ‘Sweet 100’ cherry tomato start in the Troy experimental upside down planter, it is looking good and already has blooms on it.  I also transformed a big, ugly black plastic pot into a pretty container with Tuscan kale, ‘Bright Lights’ chard, and arugula. Can’t wait to see it in a couple of weeks.

I picked a gazillion more Hungarian wax peppers so I stuffed a bunch to snack on during the Longhorns game. These have become a favorite weekend snack, they are so addicting and disappear quickly. Here’s how I make them:

Hungarian wax peppers stuffed with tuna salpicon

Stuffed Garden Peppers

Slice 12 large peppers in half and remove seeds. Place in a saucepan, cover with water and add a tablespoon of white vinegar and a teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil, then turn off fire and drain immediately. The idea is that they soften but remain slightly crisp. Let them cool.

Meanwhile, mix 1/2 an onion, finely minced; 2-3 sprigs of Italian parsley or cilantro, chopped; the juice of half a lime, salt and pepper, and a can of good quality tuna in olive oil (Italian preferably).  Flake tuna with a fork and toss with the rest of the ingredients. You can use this filling as is, like a salpicón, but sometimes I like to add about 2-3 oz of cream cheese to form a pate-like filling. Stuff the cooled pepper halves with the mixture, sprinkle with extra sea salt to taste for added crunch. Enjoy with a cold beer!

We transplanted the Key lime tree  for the fall since it must come in for the winter. We found a sturdy laundry hamper with handles for $6, the ideal container!  I didn’t realize how many limes were on the tree. I picked enough to make something out of them, maybe pie is in the near future.

Freshly picked, organic Key limes from my beautiful tree!

During the week I will plant more things including carrot seeds, which are fragile and will require that we “Pickle proof” the seedbeds. We will use the iron frames with window screening as doggy barriers.  Spinach and leek seeds will go in 4″ pots to be planted in the garden later when it is a bit cooler. Hurray fall!

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  1. Chris and I are harvesting a bunch of peppers, too – and the basil is still going strong. You inspired us to do a fall planting and we were lucky to snag a great deal on some washtubs full of nice dirt on craigslist, only to find out they were already planted with mixed greens, beets, squash and heirloom carrots! The previous owner couldn’t keep them at her apartment, but couldn’t bear to pull the shoots – so we decided to “rescue” them. Beets are looking pretty sparse, so may plant something else in that tub. Love the rain!

    • What a score! If you guys like beets, just replant some. They are so easy to grow! I planted “Jewel Toned Blend” seeds from Renee’s Garden, will have red, golden, and candy stripped!

  2. I’m jealous of all those limes – I only had 5 or 6. Sounds like your garden is well under way! I’ll be curious to hear how the tomatoes do in the Topsy Turvey thing.

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