Monday, June 16, 2014

HARVEST MONDAY, OUR FIRST


Every Monday, Daphne's Dandelions hosts "Harvest Monday" where bloggers can post their harvests (click her link above to see what others are harvesting). We're hoping that each weekend now, for a while anyway, will provide us with something to post about each Monday.

Behold!

Garden Harvest
It's our first ever harvest! (don't laugh)

Almost missed the two tomatillos as they were hidden up under the bush.  I was worried because there are so many blooms but no actual tomatillos that I saw.  Then I spotted these two.  As you can see, I think they were a bit late in being harvested, because they outgrew their husks.

The large tomato is a Homestead 24.  There was another larger one but it had been half eaten by something.  Since it was eaten from the top, I'm guessing a bird was the culprit.  Dang it!

The cherry tomatoes were so good.  I say were because they didn't last long after this photo was taken.  Warm off the vine, they were like candy.  I swear, one tiny tomato has ten times the flavor of the biggest store bought regular.  I did notice the some of the cherry toms split.  Any suggestions?  We used all the rest of the tomatoes in a nice salad.

The peppers are doing well, we should get some next weekend.  The eggplant, sadly, is getting overrun with ants but it's hanging in.  The squash bed has been a failure.  I watched the automated watering system while there and that raised bed was getting flooded.  My guess is they are getting OVER watered.  I'm going to need to change the soaker hose on that one to something more like a drip line hose.  I disconnected it from the system for now, I'd rather sacrifice those two small plants in order to keep the tomatoes, peppers and herbs coming. 

Herbs
Speaking of, I also harvested a bunch of herbs (see plants above) but forgot to weigh them.  They will be dried and saved for future use.

Total weight of this harvest, 10 3/4 ounces.

I think we started our plantings a bit late this season while fiddling around with getting the watering system worked out. Now it's hot (really hot) and some plants are struggling.  I know it's not much, but hey, it's our first and we couldn't be happier. 


37 comments:

Mom at home said...

Those cherry tomatoes look so yummy! There is a reason they never make it in the house!
They are probably splitting because of too much water. More experienced gardeners may have a different opinion. Happy gardening!

jaz@octoberfarm said...

wow....you are 3-4 weeks ahead of us. i plant cherry tomatoes mainly just to eat as i garden. not many make it inside. you must be thrilled to be harvesting!

Daphne Gould said...

Congrats. When I used to be able to eat tomatoes I always had cherry tomatoes. They are just so good. Some varieties are more prone to splitting than others, but I've never grown them without some splitting. Consistent watering can help and always pick what you can before a big rainstorm. A lot of water all at once almost always makes it happen.

Sandy said...

1st Man,

Let me try typing that comment again, I messed up and deleted, sorry.

Congrats on your first harvest!!!! Take plenty of pictures of your harvests, it's always great to look back at your accomplishments. Enjoy!

Marcia said...

Wow! You've got tomatoes! Splitting is due from too much water as others said. Try planting your squash again and use less water. You have a long growing season where you are so there should be time enough.

I have tomato blossoms only but won't be long before the harvest of such begins.

Look forward to your weekly postings on your harvests.

Dawn McHugh said...

My toms are still green I am growing them in hanging baskets this year they are a trailing type, thought they would be easier to transport with the move coming up.
I agree about the watering causing splitting.
Well done on your first harvest. we are harvesting courgettes (belive you call them zuchini) and broccoli at the moment along with salad.

Texan said...

Your tomatillos are exactly as they should be for picking :O). I was a bit not sure myself on exactly when to pick them so I did some reading. They are ready to pick when they fill up or bust their husk. So looks like they were just prefect to me :O). Those are beauties too, what a nice size! I have a pot of salsa verde on the stove now, canning that today :O). I picked a big bowl full of tomatillos this weekend, though I must say not as big as yours! Your tomatoes are lovely and yes after home grown one cannot buy those cardboard tasting tomatoes from the store LOL. Soaker hoses can be hard to regulate the water with I agree. We found some with a blue disk in the end that helps to regulate the water flow. They are the best we have used. I have soaker hose under all the hay in my garden rows. Eventually I would like to go to drip irrigation as you use less water and get better results I think. The ants LOVE eggplants arghhh as do the aphids. But so far other than a early encounter with aphids which a good washing off with water took care, not ants yet LOL. My peppers are slow to go this year. whew. Not sure what is up with them. I have already planted some seeds to start some for a fall planting, I am starting to wonder about these I have now LOL

langela said...

Those tomatoes have my mouth watering! I can hardly wait for ours. Your first harvest look great!

Judith said...

A certain amount of splitting is inevitable because you can't control how much or how often it rains. The toms still taste good. There's nothing like a sweet little tomato, still warm from the sun, is there!

FionaG said...

Like others have said, your tomatoes will split if they are ripe then are hit with lots of rain. The suggestion to pick the ripe ones before rain is a good one, if it worries you. I find the only difference between split and not split is that the split ones need to be eaten first as they don't store as well. If you are tomato eaters, it causes no problems. Congrats on your first harvest. It is very exciting and I'm sure the beginning to bigger and better bounty.

Dave said...

It's great to see ripe tomatoes! All I have are green ones, and they are just now setting on. Others have some great comments on why tomatoes split. I do think some varieties will split no matter what you do. I'd rather have a few splitting than the birds after them. I hate it when that happens! The bird usually just pecks at it enough to mess it up.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your harvest! What a beauty of garden goodness! Your herbs look gorgeous!
Yea, the birds love my garden as much as I do - so I always plant extra. The birds also eat bad insects and snails, so I'll allow them some of my produce.
Like you, very few of the little tomatoes make it back to the house. I planted some little yellow pear tomatoes - they are so delicious; I also love the little grape tomatoes.

Growing your own food - nothing better! Good job, guys!

Texas Rose

Thomas Generazio said...

Congrats on your first harvest! I've never had issues with birds eating my tomatoes. It was always the field mice and other rodents! I'm looking into getting a decoy owl to deter the birds from eating my blueberries. I'll let you know how it turns out!

Cloud said...

Congratulations! I've just had my first harvest of the year as well… but it didn't quite make it out of the garden and into a picture unfortunately! Sugar snap peas are just too delicious :)

Practical Parsimony said...

Did you ever get a play snake to keep birds from the tomatoes? The hoses shold be snaky enough if you just attach some balls with eyes to them.

Stoney Acres said...

What! Tomatoes already, Man am I jealous! We are still a month away from tomatoes!!

1st Man said...

I wondered about the water. We had a LOT of rain the last couple of weeks, so that's probably it. They are delish aren't they? Yum!!!

1st Man said...

And I was about 3 weeks or so late in planting this year so we might should be even further ahead, ha. It is almost like cherry tomatoes are just nice gardeners snack food while working huh? :-)

1st Man said...

Well there you go, that's the culprit. We had monsoon like rains the week before i was out there, 5 or 6 inches over a couple of days so that's what did it. Thank you for the insight! And by the way, thanks for the Harvest Monday's, love it!

1st Man said...

No problem!! I was thinking about that, that it will be nice to look back and see what worked and what didn't and then enjoy the pictures of what was nice. ;-)

1st Man said...

Yeah, it's pretty much an early season for us in these parts. We almost have to get them up and growing by March. I waited until end of April and that might have been a bitt late but better late than never as they say, ha. Too much water definitely seems the reason. I will have to pull them before we expect lots of rain. Thank you!

1st Man said...

Thank you! I've always wanted to do trailing toms in baskets. Thought that would be neat to do. Courgettes, I love that name. I also like aubergine instead of eggplant. :-)

Thank you for stopping by!!

1st Man said...

Awesome to know. It's funny you posted about that too, when I stopped at the grocery store last night on the way home, I saw a big pile of tomatillos and I noticed that most were just like that as well (though you know OURS taste much better!). Salsa verde for canning? Is that a regular water bath canning project or does it require pressure canning? I was wondering what to do with them when we start getting lots. I need to see how long they will last so I can see if I can hold on to them before the next batch.

Ants love eggplants? Well crap! So do we, that's not fair, ha.

Thanks for the tip on the soaker hose. I was afraid of that. It's keeping the toms and herbs happy but yeah, too much on the squash.

1st Man said...

Thank you, it's small but we're exciting. After all, this is also a sort of experiment in remote care for them. Setting up watering on a timer, etc. You'll have some of your own soon, I bet you are excited. NOthing like fresh food you grew yourself is there?

1st Man said...

Oh my, you are so right. Warm from the sun, they were literally like candy. Even the split ones, as you said, ha.

1st Man said...

I hope bigger and better! Yes, there were a couple of split ones that didn't get eaten right away and they started leaking and made a mess. Those will be the first ones eaten from now on. Thanks!!

1st Man said...

Oh my gosh, exactly. I saw the pecked one and it ruined an entire tomatoe with just a few eaten spots. Dang birds! Good point about some varieties too, there is another batch of cherry toms growing and they actually didn't split. Thanks for the reminder, I need to add that to my journal for future reference.

1st Man said...

The herbs are doing well, they struggled a bit at first, again I think I got them in the ground a bit late but doing much better now. I want to try those little yellow pear toms...I will put that on the list next year. Do you know what variety you have?

Thank you for the comment, you always say the sweetest things.

Oh, and the birds can share after we have more than enough, ha.

Anonymous said...

The little yellow pear tomatoes in my garden are heirloom tomatoes. I don’t know their exact variety - I have my local nurseryman order the plants for me each year. There is also a little red pear variety which I have grown, but the red ones are hard to find.
Since you and I both live in SE Texas, they should be available in your area, but you may have to find a local nursery - not sure the big stores have them.
I googled for info on them and found out they have been grown since the 1700’s - wow, what history.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pear_tomato
If you can’t find them at a local nursery, you can order seeds from
SeedSavers.org: http://www.seedsavers.org/onlinestore/tomato_3/Tomato-Beams-Yellow-Pear.html?gclid=COvByuq0gb8CFcnm7AodmjgAmA
or SeedsOfChange.com: http://www.seedsofchange.com/quickfacts.aspx?c=9808&cat=190#ad-image-ProductDetail1_aFirstImage
or amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Seeds-Change-S10997-Certified-Organic/dp/B000TQ48GC/ref=pd_sim_sbs_b_1?ie=UTF8&refRID=0KAMG09KYG5XQ5YSYFWT

Since they are heirlooms, you can save the seeds from your tomatoes and then plant them the next year.
I’ve read where you can dehydrate them for future snacks - so there’s another use for your dehydrator!

Happy Gardening!
Texas Rose

1st Man said...

Thank you!!! Maybe the Texas birds are more aggressive, ha. I never thought about field mice though, we do have those and they could slip in just about anywhere in the garden fence. I've seen those owls, I might get one just to try out as well. And that rubber snake, ha.

1st Man said...

Ha, funny how that works huh? And by the way, welcome! Thanks for commenting! Oh my sugar snaps are one of my favorites. Didn't try them this year but might next. I can guarantee they won't make it back to the house, LOL!

1st Man said...

No snake yet, totally forgot but now that you said it, I am going to have to try that. I think they have some at the dollar store. I could just scatter them around the garden. But I'm thinking I'll need to warn 2nd Family first in case they stop by and see the place overrun with snakes, ha.

1st Man said...

A month away? I bet you are marking the days. It's worth the wait though isn't it!!

Alison said...

Congratulations! I had faith!

Margaret said...

Congrats on your first Harvest Monday! I did my first in early June - It's pretty awesome. BTW those tomatoes look amazing - the first (of anything really) is always so exciting!

1st Man said...

We must have faith that the Universe is unfolding as it should..... :-)

Luv ya!

1st Man said...

It's exciting huh? I think we were a bit late starting this year so we're a bit behind. Thank you and thanks for stopping by!! Come back soon!