Sunday, August 9, 2015

Garden -- August

You know what you have to do.
Pick, pick, pick those zucchinis and eat them small and sweet.
You can blanche and freeze them or pickle them if you get tired of eating them fresh.
You can also batter-dip and fry the blossoms and eat those to prevent new zucchinis.
If you're tired of eating fresh green and wax beans, you can freeze and pickle those too.
I don't recommend canning them unless you have a pressure canner and know how to use it.
Beans are famous for developing botulism if you use a heat canner.
OR let them grow.  When the pods get papery, harvest them and strip out the seeds.
If you bought open-pollinated seeds for planting, the seeds you harvest should be fertile.
If not, dry them and use them in chili.
'Maters, you should have 'maters. 
If there too many to eat fresh, you can dry those yourself instead of canning them.
It means saving 75% compared to the store-bought dried tomatoes.
Green tomatoes?  Batter them and fry 'em, make 'em into piccalilli or chow chow.
CORN!  I don't grow it myself.  Try making corn relish with the leftovers.
Cucumbers -- those are obvious.  Even the slicing variety can be pickled in tsukemono or Liang Ban Huang Gua.
Eggplant -- preserve sott'oglio, or eat with greens or potatoes or Chinese Fragrant Eggplant...

What you DON'T do.
My region usually goes dry in July and August.  Let your lawn go dry.  Don't water.  DON'T MOW. 
Don't prune unless Mike McGrath says you should prune your specific shrub or tree. 
Also pay attention to his information on mulch and protect yourself against putting a toxic waste dump in your yard.
Don't prune azaleas.  It's too late.  If you  do, you'll prune away buds for next year's flowers.

What you CAN do.
Prep ground for and plant dark green leafy veg and hardy veg like beets, turnips, carrots and cabbage.  This will mean fresh garden vegetables up to Thanksgiving in parts of the country.
Some of them can survive the winter in the ground, especially if they get sun or you put straw baskets over them.
© Patricia Jo Heil, 2013-2018 All Rights  Reserved

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