Monday, July 25, 2011

July 25, 2011

A cantaloupe melon sits in 100 ears of corn

The last half of July at our place is known for three things:  melons, sweet corn, and tomatoes.  We could add a heat wave or two in there just for fun, but when these come, they come relentlessly!  Finally, those first juicy, cool, flavor-bursting melons are rolling in.  Our first honeydew looked more like a small watermelon weighing in over 10 lbs; we picked eight melons during a four-day period.  One year we used a melon baller to fill quart freezer bags with melon balls, but we never could remember to take them out of the freezer in time to thaw for our fruit salads.  Eating frozen melon balls in winter is like having a hot roast dinner during a summer heat wave, so we prefer melons fresh and enjoy them when they come.  

Sweet corn 'Gotta Have It'
blanched and ready to freeze
 Although we made two plantings of sweet corn two weeks apart, they ripened one week apart due to the second half receiving more growing degree days.  What that meant for us was picking another 100 ears of sweet corn, blanching and freezing, and giving a lot away.  The variety we grew is called ‘Gotta Have It,’ which lives up to its name, especially for pesky corn ear worms; thankfully they bother only the tip which can be cut out.  Other than planting resistant varieties, the only methods of ear worm control are pesticides or oil, neither of which we want to use.  On this round we froze several dozen ears whole on the cob to save time.  We estimate we pulled 250 ears of corn out of a 20 ft. x 20 ft. space.  Any future dinner guests will be treated to…corn!

Somewhere this week we found time to pull onions and leave them to cure in a sunny dry corner of the garden.  Their space has been overrun by melon vines anyway.  In the Fall we always turn up a few onions that we overlooked.  Dill seed, dry and brown, was gathered and tucked away in an envelope labeled for next March’s planting.

We de-skinned and canned these plumb tomatoes for use in chili, spaghetti, goulash, cabbage rolls, and other tomato-based recipes; there is nothing like pulling a jar of July's sunshine summer best out of the pantry in the dead of winter.

1 comment:

  1. The corn was delicious and so sweet. We have one more meal. Plus all the beans our plants are producing. And the tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers. YUM!!! There's nothing like fresh produce.


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Dedicated to the responsible production and preservation of healthy home-grown food to the glory of God. Isaiah 55:10 The rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater. Organic, or not? We try to raise vegetables organically, using compost and manure. The addition of chickens to our hobby farm means plenty of organic nitrogen to compost! This site gives credible reference to planting information contained in the Farmer's Almanac (