Monday, August 18, 2014

Harvest Monday - August 18, 2014


I harvested about 2/3 of the Rossa di Milano onions this past week.  The stems had fallen and, even though I would have preferred to leave them in the ground for about a week or so afterwards (as I often see recommended), we were in for a couple of rainy days so I thought it best to get them out of the ground after only a few days.  I included a couple of the very small onions in the tally as I used these in the kitchen this week, but the rest will be tallied after they are cured & ready for storage.
 
Rossa di Milano Storage Onions
 
Also new this week were three different varieties of squash.  The most impressive by far was the Zucchetta Tromboncino.  I harvested it when it was about 20” long and then sliced it up & tossed it into a grill pan on the bbq.  It was amazing!  The flavour was wonderful, as was the texture – firm yet tender.  We just loved it.
 
Zucchetta Tromboncino
 
Also harvested were two yellow summer squashes (Early Prolific) and one zucchini (Dark Green) – both being the first harvest from these plants.
 
Summer Squash - Dark Green (left) and Early Prolific (right)
 
So far I am not overly impressed with either of these varieties, certainly as far as production or earliness goes.  However, my squash plants are, once again, not thriving.  They are all still tiny, with only one plant (Sure Thing) being of modest size.  No surprise that this particular plant is the one that has produced the most so far.  Once I figure out how to grow a decent sized squash plant in my garden, then I will be in a better position to judge between different varieties.

The one positive that has come out of our unusually cool summer has been the continuous lettuce supply.  I pick lettuce on a cut and come again basis and this second seeding is doing very well, providing us with lots of tender leaves.
 
Lettuce - Pinares (left) and Sierra MI (right)
 
I had a large harvest of the Golden of Bacau beans.  So far, I have been able to keep ahead of the bacterial brown spot.  Only a small portion of the beans have been tossed, primarily those that were near the bottom of the vines.
 
Golden of Bacau Romano Beans
 
The tomatoes have really started to roll in – I harvested over 18 lbs this week!  I’m thinking that this coming week I will make my first attempt at canning some sauce and/or tomatoes.
 
Gypsy Tomato Harvest
 
I waited a bit too long to harvest a couple of the Gypsy tomatoes which is evident by the cracking that you can see on the tomato at the bottom.

The last four tomato varieties finally started to ripen this past week:  Costoluto Genovese, Cherokee Purple, Mountain Merit and Speckled Roman.

Clockwise from the top:
Costoluto Genovese, Mountain Merit,
Cherokee Purple (also in the middle) and Speckled Roman
 
One of the Costoluto's was fused - these just fascinate me.
 
Fused Costoluto Genovese
 
This week I also harvested a few leaves from the Tyee spinach plants.  The spinach has not been thriving but I’m seeing it pick up just a bit after I removed the pea vines that were leaning over this section of the bed and blocking most of the light.
 
Tyee Spinach
 
I also harvested some Mei Qing Choi and had my first taste.  They were delicious – I am quite taken with this variety.
 
Mei Qing Choi Chinese Cabbage
 
Also harvested this week but not photographed were several cucumbers, which are coming in slow but steady.

My harvest totals this week were:

Beans – 1,615 grams (3.56 lbs)
Chinese Cabbage – 350 grams (0.77 lbs)
Cucumbers – 1,614 grams (3.56 lbs)
Lettuce – 198 grams (0.44 lbs)
Onions – 170 grams (0.37 lbs)
Spinach – 112 grams (0.25 lbs)
Squash – 2,166 grams (4.78 lbs)
Tomatoes – 8,506 grams (18.75 lbs)

Total for Week – 14.73 kg (32.48 lbs)

Total to Date – 68.94 kg (151.97 lbs)

To see what everyone else has been harvesting over the past week, head on over to Daphne’s Dandelions, our host for Harvest Mondays.
 
Till next time…

“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things” ~~ Robert Brault

33 comments:

  1. Gorgeous harvest! Love that you already have fall greens like spinach and asian greens and tomatoes at the same time. And I'm jealous of those huge purple onions!

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    1. Thanks Jenny. The spinach is actually not technically for the fall - this planting is just the latest in a long string of attempts since the spring to grow a decent crop of spinach. Hopefully I'll meet with success at some point :)

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  2. A great looking week! I love the variety of tomatoes you are growing. I really need to expand the types I'm growing!

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    1. I don't have much experience with different varieties so I'm trying quite a few at a time to see which ones work best here. I was actually overwhelmed when ordering seeds, there were so many to choose from - so many tomato varieties, so little space!

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  3. What lovely photos Margaret and beautiful harvests. You grow some unusual varieties. Oh to be able to grow storage onions well.

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    1. Thanks! I'm always on the lookout for different varieties when I go through seed catalogues. Sometimes they are a hit - other times, not so much ;)

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  4. Beautiful harvests, especially your tomatoes! And that Zucchetta Tromboncino looks so interesting. I have several plants for Early Prolific yellow squash and am also not impressed with that variety. My plants are also very small and not producing well (one of the plants finally has a single squash that is growing). Considering this variety is called "Early Prolific," I am particularly unimpressed because this is rather late to be getting a single squash.

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    1. Couldn't have said it better myself - the name "Early Prolific" is a misnomer in every way. And I thought it was just me!

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  5. The red onions look great, I think you were right to pull them before the rain. The Tromboncino is an interesting squash. This year I tried having it share a trellis with the Musica beans. That didn't work out so well since the beans got going early and shaded out the squash. It's flowering now but they are all male flowers, so yours is the first I have seen.

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    1. Mine had only male flowers for quite a while before the first female one showed up. It's just now setting it's second squash. I'm not sure how prolific it is in general as squash plants just don't seem to do well for me.

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  6. Grilled Tromboncino is great, isn't it! That was my favorite way to prepare it when I used to grow it. The Mei Qing is lovely too. Such a great pac choi, another of my favorites.

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    1. You said it! The great thing about gardening is the endless variety in what you can grow - and eat!!

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  7. Those are beautiful onions you have there, love Tromboncino squash, I grew it 2 years ago, love the texture and taste, will try again if I can find space for it.

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    1. Thanks! I had actually never even heard of Tromboncino squash until last summer and it is definitely a winner - It's by far my favourite out of all the squash varieties I am growing this year.

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  8. Really gorgeous onions! And I've never heard of that Costoluto tomato, very interesting shape. It seems like a lot of people are struggling with little zucchini plants this year.

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    1. I am loving the onions but I don't really have a proper setup for curing them yet. I hope this doesn't come back to bite me later when they are in storage.

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  9. Love the color of your onions. Did not grow trombie this year, no room, may be next year. Gorgeous heirloom tomatoes, you sure got a good variety.

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    1. Thanks Norma - it definitely was tough in the spring when faced with the hundreds of different tomato varieties to choose from. I had actually only planted to grow 6 or 7 varieties but I ended up with 12 - just couldn't help myself!

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  10. Lovely harvest and you have such a nice variety to grace your table. I have never tried to grow a Tromboncino but my yellow squash have not produced a lot yet. Did get quite a few zucchini but had two containers with them in and think they are about done. One had some kind of little bugs on it so I pulled it out. Nancy

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    1. We have to enjoy whatever we get while it lasts, right? It's too bad about your squash - hopefully you'll get a few more before the summer is over.

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  11. I am amazed that you are getting spinach in August! I couldn’t do that here. Before summer ends, I am going to have to let one of those Tromboncinos get really long and try it on the grill. Your tomatoes look like they could be in a magazine advertisement for heirlooms!

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    1. That's so nice of you to say! Heirlooms are so gorgeous to begin with I actually think it would be hard to take a bad picture of them :)

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  12. That's one amazing onion harvest. I am not familiar with that variety.

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    1. It's my first year growing them - so far they taste great but the real test will be how well they store through the winter.

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  13. Lovely harvests. The Costoluto is such a pretty tomato.

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    1. Thanks Daphne - the Costoluto is my favourite in terms of shape.

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  14. Very beautiful harvests. Love the shape of the Costoluto Genovese tomato.

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    1. Thanks - the Costoluto is definitely a looker!

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  15. Darn, I wrote a long comment then accidentally logged out and lost it, I'm too clumsy! Anyway, it was something like....I think one of my friends is growing trombocino over here, will see how they're doing, looks like just one fruit is equivalent to several courgettes! With all your tom varieties have you seen much difference in quality? I've grown cute little Red Pear this year and they seem more susceptible to blossom end rot?

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    1. So far, I have noticed that a couple are more prone to cracking, especially the Gypsy. The only BER I've had so far was on one tomato from a "mystery" variety that my son brought home from a school field trip to an agricultural centre. But all my plants are all coming down with some sort of blight - even the resistant ones have a few yellow leaves - our cool damp weather this year is taking its toll. I have noticed a big difference in texture with a few being more grainy than others. I'm hoping to do a tasting lineup soon.

      And I have definitely been there - you finish a comment and then close the page without clicking submit....and then you sit there kicking yourself, of course ;)

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  16. Oh no sorry to hear you have some kind of blight, luckily I've never had it on my indoor toms. I did get it the one time I grew them outside so then didn't grow outdoors anymore. Have managed to fit 21 plants in my lean to at home. Most doing well except two.

    t's turned v cool here too and everything slowing down. Hope to do a tom taste test soon as well :) thanks for the interesting info.

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    1. Oh, if I had a greenhouse the wonderful things I could grow! Maybe one day....

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    2. Yes! It's really what made us get this house! It's just stuck right on the back, so easy to pop in and out. Nothing posh, just an aluminium frame with paving and brick base round the front side. Good for raising plants too though gets v hot and some tend to get frazzled. But definitely get one if you can.

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