Monday, August 1, 2016

Harvest Monday 8/1/16

The word to describe my harvests this week is overwhelming!  This has been the week where my baskets and bins just aren't big enough, the kitchen counters can't hold it all and there's not enough time to deal with all the harvests.  Yep, it's late summer around here!

This week brought the biggest tomato harvest so far at 28.6 lbs.  I made a batch of gazpacho and two batches of tomato sauce so far.  J got me a very snazzy new food processor for my birthday this past weekend.  I was thrilled to be able to make an entire batch of gazpacho all at once (it holds 16 cups!).  My previous food processor had developed a crack at the top of the bowl that meant I had to try and cover the opening with my finger to prevent food from flying out, which was never very successful!

The biggest crop this week was melons at 39.7 pounds.  Luckily we had company this weekend and had help eating excessive amounts of melons.  I harvested the first watermelon of the year, a Charleston Grey, which was very delicious.  It didn't get too large (12 lbs), but it was tasty.  Most of  the time my watermelons aren't very sweet, but this was the best tasting watermelon I've ever grown.  I did make a friend select which watermelon to pick.  She is much better at that thumbing and listening to the sounds of watermelons than I am!

I find that knowing when to harvest cantaloupes is so much easier.  They practically pick themselves and almost detach from the vine when they are ready.  This week brought lots and lots of cantaloupes.

Another first this week is a Dickinson pumpkin.  I struggle with growing pumpkins because of the vine borers.  This is a variety of Cucurbita moschata, which is less attractive to the vine borers because of the solid stems.  It is described as very disease and pest resistant- a must in my garden. Varieties of C. moschata also tend to do better in hot and humid climates- hello South Carolina!  A type of Dickinson pumpkin called Libby Select is used to make most of the commercially canned pumpkin in the world.  The company owns that particular variety, so the seeds are not available for purchase.  However, this Dickinson pumpkin is closely related.  I harvested one 7 lb pumpkin and there's another one on the same vine that is the same size, a third one that is huge and now it is producing a fourth pumpkin.  As for taste, the Dickinson pumpkin is dry and sweet.  It is also easy to cut and the fleshy part is very thick. 

I haven't tried making a pie yet, but I did make these pumpkin patties that were delicious.  The Dickinson pumpkin is definitely going to become a regular variety in my garden.

This is how my current veggie pile is looking:

It has been a big week for peppers at over 23 lbs.  The green beans (7.3 lbs), summer squash (3.8 lbs), okra (1.4 lbs) and cucumbers (14.3 lbs) are still being harvested.  Another interesting new harvest for this week is an edible gourd- the long green things in the center of the picture above.  I have yet to try them, so I'll report back next week.  I also harvested and ate sweet potato greens for the first time, but I really need to deal with that giant pile of veggies and will tell you all about it when I can dig myself out of the summer harvests.

Weekly harvests (lbs):

Summer squash  3.9
Peppers  23.3
Okra   1.4
Cucumber  14.3
Green beans  7.4
Tomatoes   28.6
Eggplant 0.45
Melon  39.7
Winter squash 7.3
Sweet potato greens  0.16
Soybeans 1.6
Gourd  1.3

Yearly harvests: 404.8 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. You had my mouth watering looking at that Charleston Grey melon! I used to grow them at my old place, and they were tasty when I harvested them at the right time. I know the feeling about the counters being full. We're having a glut here too. I always wonder how the Dickinson pumpkins tasted. I'm not a real fan of Libby's canned pumpkin, but if they are dry and sweet it might be worth a try here based on your experience. I do like the moschata types which usually do well for me.

  2. Wow, your counter full of veggies is amazing! I wish I could grow melons here but they tend not to mature as I have such a short season here in the north. So I'm definitely envious of yours.

    I grew Dickinson pumpkin myself last year. As you said, easy to cut through, and was delicious.

    A great harvest!

  3. We just can't grow melons to,any decent size so no longer try so I have melon envy. We only get s few peppers and aubergines as we only have a few plants in the greenhouse.

  4. Wow - that is one huge pile of GORGEOUS veggies!! I know how you feel and I'm excited as that time of year approaches around here...and sort of dreading it too. My glut is mainly a tomato one but each year I get a bit more organized - as copious notes are made and revised :) - so the stress level is slowly going down.

    The food flying out of your food processor struck me as hilarious - I'm am SO that way with kitchen appliances in that I use them until they are on their last legs...literally :)

  5. That is quite a harvest, are you going to freeze or can most of it? Are the pumpkin patties slices of pumpkins? Thinking they should freeze well.

    1. I freeze most things- I find it easier than canning. This is the recipe for the patties:
      I used pumpkin instead of sweet potatoes. They freeze well and I reheat them for quick and delicious lunches.

  6. You know you're a garden blogger when you stand on a chair to take pictures of the produce on your counter! That's a wonderful pile of produce! Those pumpkin patties look very tasty.

    1. Haha.. I was standing on the kitchen island counter and hit my head on the pendant light!

  7. Look at all your bounty, so wonderful! That's a crazy amount of peppers. We usually can our tomatoes in the form of salsa, but I'm going to try freezing sauce this year. I bet that Charleston Grey was delicious, they're such a crispy sweet watermelon.