"Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant."
Robert Louis Stevenson

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Tomato Update, Tomato Addiction, Cucumbers, Summer Squash and Beans too

I am convinced that I have a tomato addiction! With so many heirloom varieties to choose from it is easy to get an addiction to these beauties!

I am already planning next years tomato selections. I will repeat Red Zebra, Cherokee Purple and Isle Candy, though.

The last few days have been busy for me picking tomatoes!  I have picked the San Marzano Tomatoes many times now. I like roasting them and making chunky or smooth sauce for the winter. I froze the sauce again this year in jars; so much easier than heating up the kitchen when canning. I also made 4 pint jars of salsa, I love to bring that out in January and taste the flavors of summer when I am missing my tomatoes and going through withdrawals!.
I am really happy with the Red Zebra tomatoes I am growing this year, last year I only had the Green Zebras, ;which I have I planted but are a little late in ripening as I planted those late in June and with the cooler summer we are having I am not sure that they will do that well.  I have plenty on the vines, but it has been so cool this month they are taking a while to ripen. We are forecast for temperatures down to 59 degrees this week; that is just crazy for August it should be in the high 90's to over 100 now and with much warmer nights.
Heirloom Yellow Pear and Isle Candy, a really sweet yellow cherry tomato.
My cucumbers on the other hand are doing really well this year. I do not have mildew on any of the leaves and the plants are loaded with blossoms.  The bees were busy working the flowers this morning when I was looking for some to pick. I found a few and will make a jar of pickles with these.  I should be getting a bunch in the next week or two as I saw lots of small ones forming.  I can't wait to have these pickles for Thanksgiving and Christmas this year. So often my vines get mildew or just get too hot and shrivel up before they produce, I am grateful for the cooler weather we have for these.  And I do have a lot of tomatoes so I can't complain, it has been a good growing season so far.

Organic Bush Bean Pencil Pod and Pickling Cucumbers
I planted Bean Bush Pencil Pod Organic Heirlooms from Botanical Interests this year and have only picked a few handfuls in the last week. The flavor is great and the plants are very healthy. They will do better once we get a few weeks of warmer weather though.
Add caption
A few of the summer squash I planted this year, Cocozelle, an heirloom organic zucchini (the ones with the stripes), a Black Beauty zucchini (in the middle), Scallop Patty Pan Blend, so far I have only had white and I should have light green and yellow in the Patty Pan.  And yellow Crookneck squash. All doing fantastic.
Picking lots of basil, tarragon, sage and thyme.  I am still picking parsley with the cooler weather too so that is nice. I will be making Basil Pesto tonight and will also be making a sage and a tarragon pesto. I use walnuts of the sage pesto and pecans for the tarragon.  It is fun to play around with different herbs and nuts to create pesto's. I have also used hazelnuts for the tarragon, but pine nuts will work for all of them. Try using sage, blue cheese and walnuts, you will love this flavor together and it is fantastic on pork and beef. Think Prime Rib!


  1. Wow. What a harvest. The tomatoes are fantastic. We here in Colorado have been complaining about how late the tomatoes are and some of our plants are badly diseased. We aren't too sure what is wrong with them, so we won't have near the harvest as usual. Supper tonight was all from the garden, except for the pasta. Your food combos sound quite interesting.

  2. Your Bounty is amazing and so pretty! Hot weather here in Louisianan of 40 days no rain and temps from 103 10n 115 really took a toll on our garden. We lost so much this year. Your very blessed!

  3. Your Bounty is amazing and so pretty! Hot weather here in Louisianan of 40 days no rain and temps from 103 10n 115 really took a toll on our garden. We lost so much this year. Your very blessed!

  4. This is my first year for decent tomatoes. I had to get a greenhouse. Your post makes me so excited to make my first batch of salsa. Thanks for the inspiration. Your tomatoes are spetacular.

  5. Good morning Ann,
    sorry to hear that your tomatoes are not doing as well as usual. The weather has been crazy all over the country. This week looks promising.
    Thank you for stopping by my blog,

  6. Hi Betty,
    I feel blessed, as I know so many are suffering with the heat and have lost a lot of their crops.
    Lets hope this week brings relief!
    See you soon~

  7. Birds, Bees, Berries and Blooms,
    Glad to hear that your tomatoes are producing a decent crop for you. I picked about 40 more on Saturday and Sunday. This week I will be making pickles and canning tomatoes.
    Thanks for stopping by and good luck with your salsa!!

  8. Your tomatoes look scrumptious. I'd like to try the heirloom yellow pear and the Isle Candy. I bet they are sweet.

  9. L. Ambler,
    Those two are very sweet and the Isle Candy, if left for a while on the vine turns a bright orange. I like to mix those together for a tomato salad with basil and salt. That is all it needs.


Thank you for taking time to visit my blog, I love hearing from you, stay as long as you like, Carla