Monday, July 16, 2012

Harvest Monday–16 July 2012

Well, it is definitely summer now! The past few days’ highs have been in the 90s and we are looking at another week of 90+ weather, with occasional thunderstorms. Plus all the bugs and disease. At least we are now getting some summer crops which makes up for it. Powdery Mildew has arrived in the garden, affecting some summer and winter squash plants (but thankfully none of mine). Last year I had a lot of trouble with PM, which killed my zucchini after just a few fruits. It turns out there is a simple, organic spray based on milk that helps prevent PM infection. You can find the recipe in my post on the BCG blog here. A follow-up inspection showed the plants in the photos there had significantly improved and were showing only a few spots of mildew after spraying with the milk solution, so it seems to be pretty effective as well as easy and cheap.

I had my last two endive plants bolt but the escarole has been hanging in there. This is one of my last two heads, weighing in at about a pound.

Escarole

Some more chard and the last of the mustard, which has now bolted. I pulled the mustard and will replant at the end of August.

Chard and mustard

While pulling a large weed that I found after I removed the row cover from my squash, I disturbed the roots of this red onion, so I decided it was better to pull it. The garlic scapes were given to me by another gardener. I found the entire scape except for the bulb at the top to be woody and inedible. So what is the deal with scapes, I thought they were edible? These had not formed a coil so I assume they were not cut too late.

Red onion and garlic scapes

My first peppers, two Hungarian wax peppers. And more snow and snap peas, close to the last of them. The heat is getting to them.

Hungarian wax peppers and snow peas

So I lied when I said the lettuce was finished. These were volunteers from the compost applied to the raised beds. The red lettuce was found growing in the beets. Good thing I’m a casual weeder. You get gifts like this from being lazy.

Volunteer lettuces

I decided to cut the last head of escarole, figuring it would last longer in the refrigerator than in the garden given the heat we are experiencing. At the bottom is my first squash, a Costata Romanesco.


Escarole and a Costata Romanesco zucchini

The squash are now starting to produce. The yellow patty pans are Sunbust, a great squash with a creamy texture and nutty flavor. Below them is my second Costata Romanesco. Broccoli sprouts to the left and snow/snap peas to the right. At the bottom of the photo are my first tomatoes, four Sungold and a couple of Black Cherry. Note that a pair of the Sunburst squash seem to have fused together.

Sunburst patty pan squash with other veggies

A twin Sunburst patty pan

This week I should be picking beans from the Provider bush beans, with the Fresh Pick beans probably a week later. There will more squash and a few tomatoes. The cucumbers seem to be taking their time getting going. You would think they would like the hot weather. Well, hopefully that means they will have a long, productive life and not succumb to disease right away.

That’s all from my garden last week. To see what others around the world are harvesting from their gardens, head over to Daphne’s Dandelions.

22 comments:

  1. Beautiful greens and squash!

    ReplyDelete
  2. That's interesting that the milk spray worked for you. I tried it last year on my pumpkins but to be honest I was never really sure if it was slowing its progress or not. I didn't grow pumpkins this year so managed to avoid it but I will again next season so perhaps I'll give it another go.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Liz, I juiced the spray with a tablespoon of baking soda (raises the pH and is supposed to be effective against mildew) and a teaspoon of Neem oil (supposedly has fungicidal properties). The milk spray is supposed to be preventative not curative, but it did seem to clear up most of the mildew on my neighbors squash and mine are still mildew free (but the dang squash bugs are having a field day).

      Delete
  3. You cut your scape too late, you should cut when the buds are small. The scapes coil first then start to straighten up, at this stage the stem is no longer edible. Check out my July 13 post about garlic.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Norma, that explains it. My neighbor said she had been stir frying the scapes but she cut them earlier. I think she should cut the rest of them now to avoid affecting the size of her bulbs. I did see your article and plan to consult it before I plant garlic this fall.

      Delete
  4. Great looking harvest. My squash usually aren't bothered with PM, it's more the peas and the cukes that get it. But with some hot humid weather during our monsoon season it's a possibility.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks for the PM reminder. Late July is usually when I start seeing it on my squashes in Pok, NY. Last year I used milk on the squashes and it worked at least as well as the baking soda & ultralight horticultural oil solution I was using previously.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm starting to get a little envious of the heat that seemingly eveyone else has been getting this summer, just a little...

    You are pulling in some really nice harvests. It all looks so tasty.

    I see that you follow Gary Taubes. I changed the way I eat after reading his books and I'm lighter and leaner and more energetic for it. My doctor was rather surprised at how healthy my fasting blood sugar levels were for someone my age.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was doing low carb before Taubes since my sister turned me on to Dr. Bernstein, but Taubes lays out all the science behind it. It's stunning how backwards the medical profession is. My doc is still pushing the AHA diet.

      Delete
  7. You have some lovely harvests! I didn't grow escarole or endive this spring. I'll try them this fall when (hopefully) the weather is cooler. I do love those bitter greens! I need to grow some pattypan squash next year too. Those Sunbursts of yours look great.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I set the escarole and endive out fairly early and they have done well despite the heat this (hopefully atypical) summer. I haven't tried other yellow patty pans but I can definitely recommend Sunburst.

      Delete
  8. My squash get powdery mildew every year. It stresses the butternut but never kills it. Thanks for the recipe. I'll have to try that. Nice looking harvest. Have you found that the Sunburst squash has bursts of production then stops for a while? It's a great looking squash. I like to slice them in 1/2 inch filets and put them on the grill at the edge of the fire.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Sunburst right now are definitely in burst mode. I don't expect it to last, I'll just take what I can get. Last year they were fairly resistant to the mildew which killed the zucchini next to it. I'll try grilling them as you suggest. I even like just eating them raw.

      Delete
  9. I really need to keep an eye on my squash this year for PM. They usually get it late in the season.

    I love the look of patty pans. I keep thinking about planting them and never do! I'm not telling "The Italian" about your escarole and endive. He'll want to know why we don't have any right now!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Beautiful harvests. And the scapes are way too old. Once they start to straighten they really aren't edible anymore.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Great harvest! We are trying those pat-a-pan squash for the first time this year. Ours are just starting to bloom so I'm looking forward to trying them out!!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am growing Sunburst pattypan squash this year and have a bunch of small fruit on the plants but they seem to be stalled out for some reason. Of course, now that I say this, they will all mature at one time and I will be swimming in them. LOL!

    Thanks for the recipe for PM. I have used neem and had heard that the milk/baking soda solutions are also effective and filed that away for future "look into" needs if PM became an issue of any real magnitude. Typically, it is not a bit problem for me, but I have to say I saw quite a bit of it in 2011 due our very cold summer we had that year. So far all my squash plants and cucurbits are showing healthy foliage.

    ReplyDelete
  13. What a varied harvest! As others have said, the scapes have straightened too much to be edible. Although I have used ones at this point by putting them in the food processor with some dill and processing them until they are bits and then blending in cream cheese for a garlic scape-dill cream cheese spread that tasted just fine.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Fabulous harvest this year. I came back from vacation and saw the squash had PM. We are so overrun with squash I am not going to sweat it.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great harvests! Your patty pans are so sweet (especially the double)! I'm growing some for the first time this year and am so excited!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Oooh I love button squash (or paddy pan squash as you called them), but my husband doesn't. Perhaps I should give them a go anyway, yours looks so yummy, even the mutant one.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thanks to everyone for the advice on the scapes. They were not my garlic so I didn't pay attention to them. I didn't realize they straighten out after first curling up. And they certainly were not edible at that stage!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for visiting. I appreciate your taking the time to comment and value what you have to contribute to the discussion.

Template developed by Confluent Forms LLC