Squash and Cucumbers and Tomatoes, Oh My!

13 Jul

I got back last night from two days away with friends.  Today I was feeling hung over (the sleep kind of hangover, not the drunk kind of hangover – we only slept about 2 1/2 hours the night before last, as we were making custom tee-shirts for our friend’s Disneyland birthday) and it was 80+ degrees at my house (no air conditioning, and yes I’m aware that on the East Coast it’s been far warmer for the last week, but here it’s been in the low 60s…  so it was a huge temperature jump and my body really didn’t like it).  So I didn’t really get off the couch until a half hour or so ago.

I knew my poor plants desperately needed to be watered (although my husband was home, the garden really is my baby… I think if I gave him specific instructions he’d have remembered, but watering was not something he’d have done on his own), but I was completely gobsmacked when I walked out the back door.

First, the not-so-good news.  The Black Seeded Simpson lettuce has pretty much all gone to seed.  I cut two stalks off that had fallen over onto my Swiss Chard and we’re having salad for dinner; I’m thinking I have another three or four days at most before I really have to yank them out. 

Lettuce is all about ready to be pulled out

Sadly, mildew has attacked my tomatoes with a vengeance – I thought I’d been successful in cutting off all the diseased leaves, but I think last week’s bout of cold damp weather really hit them hard.  I sprayed them with a baking soda solution this evening and I’m hoping that they’ll continue to do okay.  And some little critter apparently has made my garden his home, digging a small hole through the weed cover and into the ground.  When I’m done with my watering, hubby plans to put the hose down there and see what comes out – I’m a little scared to do so, though, since it’s definitely a smaller hole than a gopher would make (so I’m thinking it may be reptilian).

I don't want to see what comes out when my hubby puts the hose down this hole...

Now for the good news.

This is tonight’s harvest:

HARVEST!

Yes, that’s all from tonight – and I made sure before I left on Sunday that anything that was ripe was pulled.  So this has all ripened over the last two days.  Two large white scallop squash, two large green cucumbers, five small lemon cucumbers, a bunch of large green beans, at least a pound of very ripe Sungold tomatoes, the third ripe Tequila Sunrise pepper, and two very exciting additions: our first two ripe Cubanelle peppers and our first Black Krum (I realize it’s probably not 100% ripe, but I was too excited to wait to pull it – there’s another one that’s nearly ripe on the plant, and I’ll wait for a couple of days to pick it).

HUGE harvest.  So very exciting!

We also have our very first eggplant growing:

Eggplant!

And our first butternut squash!

Baby butternut squash!

The watermelons are looking good, too – they’re getting gigantic…  I keep looking for signs that one of them has ripened, but so far no dice.

Watermelon vines!

And it looks like we’ll have to call an Artichoke Party at my parents’ house this weekend (every year when there are a ton of artichokes and I don’t know what to do with them we have a sort of impromptu party with my parents and my sister and my grandmother, who all love them as much as we do – we make some sort of protein and maybe grill up some polenta and boil a ton of artichokes and eat them until we can’t eat any more).  Two big ones are on the plants, with a ton of smaller ones.  YUM.

Artichokes!

We also have three purple bell peppers on the plant, and they’re getting bigger by the day.  Can’t wait to stuff them!

Bell pepper

And the Jack Be Little pumpkin sent up its first true leaves!

Pumpkin leaves

The sunflowers are getting tall too!

Sunflowers!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to make my dinner…  Salad straight from the garden!

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