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  • #43011
    BakerAunt
    Participant

      Sorry that you do not have black raspberries this year, Mike.

      Today, I went to one of our woodland properties with my husband and picked a scant 2-quarts of black raspberries. More will be ripening in the coming days, so I will be going back for more. I have picked not quite three pints from our terrace, and there will be more there as well. It would help to get a bit of rain, especially with temperatures predicted in the 90s all week. Otherwise, the bushes will begin to dry up.

      I plan to make at least two batches of jam this week, in spite of the weather. It helps that I am able to make the jam and do the canning in the Annex kitchen, thus keeping the house cool.

      #43013
      Mike Nolan
      Keymaster

        ooh, thanks for the reminder, I just went out and picked about a half-cup of black raspberries, a nice snack for the two of us.

        My son got a flat of them from the farmer's market he goes to in the Pittsburgh area, plus a flat of pie cherries.

        #43057
        chocomouse
        Participant

          Photo of my latest experiment: snow peas growing in a hanging basket off the deck. Only a few so far, but plenty for salads.

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          #43060
          chocomouse
          Participant

            And another photo - part of our 50 feet of cultivated blackberries. It's a beautiful, huge crop this year, compare to last year when we were hit with a freeze of 17* in May. I envy those of you picking black raspberries, but these will be delicious in August.

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            #43065
            Mike Nolan
            Keymaster

              Black raspberry season is getting close to over (it's usually only 2-3 weeks long), and the most I've gotten at a time this year was about an ounce and a half, just a small patch on the west side of the yard. But I see the raspberries rebounding on the east side where they got cut back last fall, so hopefully they'll be bearing fruit in another year or two.

              I think it's too hot on our deck for peas in a hanging basket. I tried them in the Aerogarden twice, got a small crop the first time, enough for a couple stir fry meals, but they didn't grow well the second time. Not sure I've got a good space for snow peas in the garden this year, but I could try companion planting them with some of the tomatoes, though it may be too late for them until I wait to plant them in September.

              I haven't put in any spaghetti squash yet, but I think I will put some in; last year they climbed up the tomato cages and did fairly well, and didn't seem to interfere with the tomatoes. Diane's not that fond of spaghetti squash, but when I pointed out how low carb they were, she thought they might be worth planting again this year. The leeks I put (plants from Johnny's, not seed) are doing well, I've got about 24 of them.

              I've got several small tomatoes already, but they're not close to ripening yet. These are on the First Lady II plants, where the average size tomato is around 5 ounces, there's probably some on the 4th of July plants by now as well. My guess is I won't see any ripe tomatoes until mid to late July.

              The urban garden project at UNL is in its 2nd year. This year the common crop is sweet corn instead of zucchini. So I've got two rows of sweet corn (one in the amended soil area, one not.) They went in late, I don't know how well they'll do. Sweet corn is kind of high carb, but if it's good, we'll just have to suffer through it. 🙂

              I planted a row of dill seed, not much of it came up. I may try re-seeding the half of the row that didn't germinate.

              #43066
              BakerAunt
              Participant

                We see lots of blackberries developing in our woodlands and on our terrace. If we keep getting periodic rain, that will make for a wonderful crop, which means more jam and more of that great blackberry brownie recipe I found last year.

                No blooms yet for the Early Girl Bush, one or two of the Better Boy, and the volunteer cherry tomatoes. One Better Boy and the cherry tomato plant my husband started has bloomed, as has the Goliath Bush and the Dester. The last two I bought already started at the farmers market.

                The beans are starting to bloom, and my husband has replanted what the chipmunk got. The honey nut squash plants have emerged

                The fairy tale pumpkin plants have emerged. My husband was worried when the three were taking a while, so he planted two more. Now there are five plants.

                We have grown snow peas in the past, then they stopped doing well. Maybe we should try the hanging pot idea.

                #43069
                chocomouse
                Participant

                  I'm not 100% sold on the peas in a hanging basket idea! I planted late, and peas should be planted very early, when it's still too cold for most plants; they will survive a light frost. Germination was excellent, we'll see about actual product. All the berry crops seem to be wonderful in Vermont this year. I have blossoms on the beans, and will start a 2nd crop whenever this constant rain of the few days stops. I have quite a few tiny tomatoes on my Sweet 100 cherry tomatoes, and quite a few little peppers on my New Ace peppers. I'm not sure how the Early Girls are doing, except the plants themselves are big and healthy. We had 4 days last week with temps 96-98* and very little rain for the past few weeks; in Vermont, we usually (used to) get maybe four days in the 90s spread out over the entire summer! Our plants suffered, even with regular deep watering.

                  Mike, if your raspberries were cut back last fall, they should be putting up new canes by now; ours are about 2 feet tall. We have 50ft of them that we mow down each fall, and they are ready to pick about the end of July; they continue to produce until frost. If you let last fall's new canes grow up, they will produce berries this summer, usually early-mid July in Vermont.

                  I sort of agree with Diane! I do not like spaghetti squash, not as a squash. I love it as fake, low-carb pasta! I treat it like spaghetti noodles - use marinara, pizza sauce/ingredients, alfredo sauce with veggies; most anything you would serve on pasta is also delicious on spaghetti squash.

                  #43074
                  Mike Nolan
                  Keymaster

                    The last time we had 'spaghetti', we actually had the marinara on cauliflower rice, I think the spaghetti squash is better, but more work and I think a little higher in carbs.

                    I've got some konjac noodles but haven't tried them yet, they get mixed reviews in the keto forums, some people have tummy issues with them, especially if they eat a large portion.

                    I think the L'Oven Fresh white bread would make good oven cheese toast.

                    #43166
                    Mike Nolan
                    Keymaster

                      I started the left Aerogarden today with Salanova, Buttercrunch and Black Seeded Simpson lettuce.

                      I'll wait a couple of weeks before starting the right one, probably also with an all- lettuce crop, though not Salanova unless I order more seed from Johnny's, as I finished off the seed I had.

                      #43174
                      chocomouse
                      Participant

                        Our beet greens on the deck are ready to eat. Lettuce is doing its thing - growing and growing. The green beans should be ready in a day or two, and I started a 2nd crop today. The snow peas are over - they are a cool season crop. Tomatoes and peppers are coming along, but they are still small. It's been a crazy season: very hot, then rain, and more rain, cool, nights in the 40s and 50s; the poor plants don't know what to do. Finally, this week, we have dry, sunny days with temps in the mid 70s to the mid 80s. Perfect gardening weather. All the berries are looking great - a huge crop this year throughout Vermont. And the skunks are enjoying the Japanese beetle grubs, which should turn into beetles and fly soon.

                        #43191
                        Mike Nolan
                        Keymaster

                          I took the rest of the tomato plants that I had started indoors in March and put them in some bare spots in the garden, if I get any tomatoes from them at all, that'll be a bonus. Most of them were pretty big.

                          I'm not impressed with the First Lady II plants I grew from the seeds I got in January, next year I might switch to Defiant. It's a determinant but that's the one that one of the test gardens at UNL grew one year as a yield test and we got something like 100 pounds of them, and they were tasty tomatoes, and high-yield.

                          I've still got about 20 quarts of tomato juice left from last year, this year I think I'm going to switch to mostly making and canning tomato sauce, plus some tomato relish

                          #43268
                          chocomouse
                          Participant

                            My four cucumber plants in the hanging basket - with a few self-seeded calibrachoas also. They are loaded with young cukes. The big ones are now 3-4 inches long and ready to eat.

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                            #43271
                            Mike Nolan
                            Keymaster

                              I think it's probably too hot on our back patio to try this, hanging baskets of flowers tend to get baked to a crisp.

                              #43276
                              chocomouse
                              Participant

                                The basket is on the south side of the deck and gets full sun from about 10:00 - 5:00, and it survived 5 days in a row of 95-96* temps. I do water it daily, sometimes twice, as cukes require a lot of water. I lined the inside of the coir basket liner with a piece of plastic wrap, to help it hold some moisture. The snow peas did well in a hanging basket also, although since they grow best in cool weather, they've been done producing for a few weeks now.

                                #43294
                                Mike Nolan
                                Keymaster

                                  I wound up replanting most of the test plot sweet corn in the UNL soil test program, a combination of poor germination rates (which others have reported) and the fact that on Monday our gardeners pulled up most of the corn that had reached 6 inches high, probably thinking it was a form of crabgrass. (It does look similar at that height.)

                                  I've marked both rows with some flags this time around and alerted the gardeners to the replanting.

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