Monday, July 18, 2016

Harvest Monday 7/18/16

This week brought more first harvests for the year.  My favorite was a small (1.4 lbs), but oh so delicious melon.  I could smell the sweet aroma as I walked by it in the garden.  This is an heirloom variety called Rocky Ford that has green flesh even when ripe.  Last year was the first time I grew this variety and was scratching my head as to why my melon that looked, smelled and tasted ripe was green.  I finally pulled out the seed packet to learn that was how it was supposed to look.

I cut my little melon the morning I picked it with plans to just eat half.  Well, somehow the whole melon vanished and this time I can't blame my dog!

Another new harvest this week is cowpeas.  If you live in a place that has long and hot summers, I highly recommend growing cowpeas.  They are easy to grow, thrive in the heat, produce plenty, and don't seem to be bothered by the bugs.  The variety I grow is called Pink Eyed Purple Hull.  It is very easy to tell when they are ready to pick because the pods turn a burgundy color.  You can shell and cook them fresh, or freeze them or let them dry.  When looking for recipes, black-eyed peas are the most common type of cowpeas, so that will most likely be the ingredient to look for.  If you have fresh cowpeas and have a recipe for dried ones, just skip the soaking step and adjust the amount.  If a recipe calls for 1 1/2 cups of dried cowpeas that is equivalent to about 4 cups of fresh.

I cooked mine into an Indian dish with dill and corn and other spices and ate with rice.

Other harvests coming in this week include cucumbers, Red Noodle beans, the first Roma tomatoes, cherry tomotoes (Sun Gold), yellow squash, zucchini and okra.

Another first  harvest for the year was eggplant.  I really thought I took a picture, but that seems not to be the case.  It must have been a mental image!  Anyway, it was a Long Purple eggplant. which will be sliced, roasted and added to a pizza later this week.

I made my first batch of dill pickles for 2016.  I have vowed to not can 40 jars of pickles this year!  That was way too many.  I still have nine jars remaining from last year after giving them to everyone I could think of.  I am exploring what else to do with an abundance of cucumbers.

 Weekly harvests:

Broccoli 2.23 lbs
Onion 0.38 lbs
Amaranth 0.78 lbs
Summer squash 8.04 lbs
Peppers 0.74 lbs
Okra 0.37 lbs
Corn 2.21 lbs
Cucumber 12.06 lbs
Green beans 2.86 lbs
Tomatoes 2.04 lbs
Eggplant 0.22 lbs
Melon 1.39 lbs
Cowpeas 2.61 lbs

Yearly harvest: 221 lbs

That's all the harvests coming from my garden this week.  To see what others are harvesting, check out Harvest Monday on Our Happy Acres.


  1. That melon sure looks delicious, I can see why it disappeared. I tried cowpeas last year but had spotty germination so only got a few. They are weird plants. Probably would do well in this year's weather, though.

    1. That's unfortunate you didn't get good germination. I always wait and plant mine at least a month after the last frost date, but that would depend on how long your growing season is. I actually planted some more last week and they sprouted in two days. It seems they really like hot weather. I also soak the seeds overnight before planting.

  2. I love green fleshed melons but it does take getting used to compared to the more usual orange ones. And I have fond memories of shelling Pink Eye Purple Hulls until my thumb and fingers were stained purple! I have been buying them at a farmer's market of late, though they certainly would do well here in my garden too. 40 jars of pickles sure is a lot! I'll bet friends and family love yours.

    1. Oh yes, I know the purple stained fingers all too well!

  3. I would love to be able to grow melons.

  4. Never grew cow peas/black eye peas before should try next year. My red noodle beans is just starting to flower so hopefully I will be harvesting soon.

  5. Oh my gosh, I only pickled 10 jars last year and still have a few left. But 40!? That melon looks fabulous - I am trying again this year but I don't think my season is long enough.

    1. It was a ridiculous amount of pickles- I just kept canning them and counted later. I blame the slugs for the excessive amount of cucumbers last year- they killed all my seedlings and so I replanted with many, many spares because I thought there would be casualties and then they all survived. Hopefully this year I won't have so many.

  6. You've gotten tons of cucumbers and summer squash this week, so great. And that is a luscious looking melon. I've really enjoyed growing melons this year, it's a lot easier than watermelon.

    1. I find melons easier to grow than watermelons too. I still grow some watermelons, but find it so hard to decide when to pick them. I thump and thump on them, but can never quite figure out what it's supposed to sound like when they are ripe.