Monday, October 24, 2016

Harvest Monday - October 24, 2016


We are almost at the end of October and, bit by bit, the garden is being cleared out.  There are now only a few beds left from which to harvest:  Swiss chard/lettuce; kale; broccoli; carrots/parsnips; bunching onions.

The Swiss chard will likely be pulled soon as it's barely growing in the cool fall weather.

Chard & lettuce bed

I'll leave the lettuce for now - it's still fairly small and with the cool temps and reduced sunlight, chances are that this is it.  Next year I'll have to get them in the ground sooner and make sure to amend the bed (which, in my rush to get them planted, I failed to do this time round).

The kale is not growing very much at this stage either, although I'm sure it's appreciating the chillier weather.


I have a good quantity of greens in the freezer, so I've decided to harvest the rest of the kale as needed, to use fresh.

The only variety left in the broccoli bed is Arcadia.  All of the netting was taking off the brassica beds this past weekend as I've not seen any cabbage whites since the temps have dipped.

Arcadia broccoli plants

How lovely to be able to harvest without the hassle of removing the netting!

Once again, Arcadia is enjoying the fall weather and rewarding me with plenty of side shoots.  The photo above was taken after harvesting.  Here's a look at them before harvesting:


There are still quite a few shoots left on the plants, including a couple of large ones, to harvest...we will not be short of broccoli this coming winter, that's for sure!

Another yummy harvest were the raspberries - this past week I had my largest picking ever:

Heritage & Fall Gold raspberries

Yes, that's probably a drop in the bucket for those with mature raspberry patches, but we were very happy to have more than half a dozen berries to share between us :)

Last week saw the last of the tomatoes and peppers.  I had been picking the tomatoes every few days, as soon as I saw them starting to ripen on the plant.  Considering we have had about 3 frosts in the past couple of weeks, it's amazing they've lasted this long:

2nd last tomato picking

As for the pepper plants, I had previously written about pulling them and hanging those with a lot of full sized peppers in the garage to continue to ripen.

This worked ok for the smaller Lemon Drop, where quite a few of the peppers ripened on the plant, but I found that larger peppers started to dry up - much like they usually do when I try to ripen them indoors.  As soon as I realized this, I decided to pick all of the larger sweet peppers:

Odessa & Jimmy Nardello

There were a few ripe Odessa & Jimmy Nardellos, but all of the Carmens were still green.

Carmen

We particularly enjoy green roasted peppers so that's how those ended up before going into the freezer.

The Lemon Drops were picked about a week later when they too started to show signs of drying out a bit.  I was able to harvest 44 peppers from the plant, all of which were green when I pulled the plant 2 weeks ago:

Last of the tomatoes & Lemon Drop peppers

The above basket shows the final tomato harvest, which I did yesterday before clearing out the bed.  All of the small fruited tomatoes will be left to ripen up while the large green tomatoes are destined to become fried green tomatoes.

Lastly, all of the Starburst carrots were harvested:

Starburst Carrots

I set aside those that have damage for immediate use (there were a couple of split ones) while the others were placed in the cold cellar after being topped.  There are still a few varieties in the ground and I'm planning to get those harvested over the next couple of weeks.

My harvest totals this week were:

Broccoli – 674 grams (1.49 lbs)
Carrots – 4,822 grams (10.63 lbs)
Onions – 256 grams (0.56 lbs)
Sweet Peppers – 978 grams (2.16 lbs)
Hot Peppers – 152 grams (0.34 lbs)
Tomatoes – 2,482 grams (5.47 lbs)
Raspberries – 110 grams (0.24 lbs)

Total for Week – 9,474 grams (20.89 lbs)

Total to Date – 267.15 kg (588.94 lbs)

To see what everyone else has been harvesting over the past week, head on over to Our Happy Acres where Dave is our host for Harvest Mondays.

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

30 comments:

  1. It must feel good to put those little seeds in the ground and a few months later to harvest them and eat or freeze them for the winter. How wonderful it is that you do it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do so enjoy beautiful flowers & plants, but the wonder of growing something that we can actually eat will never get old :)

      Delete
  2. You're doing so well to still be getting harvests at this time of year, and still such a selection of things too. I must admit that my autumn and winter harvests were a bit of a washout when I had the allotment, I just never put in enough effort really to keep the harvests coming.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Most of what's left is from the summer, other than the lettuce which was given to me by the farm. I was supposed to be growing a lot more this fall, but just didn't have the time to get much going. One of these days I'll do a proper fall garden but I must say, this year, I'm glad for the break!

      Delete
  3. Wow, you've had a great year. The Arcadia broccoli has certainly been a star. Fabulous raspberries, I can only imagine how well they'll do next year when the patch is more mature. It's a sad task to clear out the garden at the end of the year, but now you get a break. I'm doing a more scaled down winter garden this year, I need something of a break too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Michelle! I'm really looking forward to next years raspberry harvest - hopefully I'll have them on the drip system by then too. What I'm not looking forward to is giving them some protection. So far, I haven't had to cover them but I'm wondering how long that will last once it becomes obvious that there are ripe, juicy berries to be had.

      I have a feeling you'll more than enjoy your break, considering all of the problems you've had to endure this year. I am definitely looking forward to it also because I get to tackle a few things that have been put on hold until the garden is done...you should see the state of our basement!

      Delete
  4. The broccoli side-shoots look like full-sized heads! Glad you are finally getting some raspberries, and the frosts haven't really affected them. Thanks for the update on the pepper-ripening experiment; guess I won't have to try it myself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So far we've only had some light frosts, which I suppose is why the raspberries are still going. Hopefully we get a few more before a hard frosts does them in.

      Yes, when it comes to the peppers, I don't think it was worth it for any of the plants other than the Lemon Drops. Even so, if I had the time, I'd probably pot them up instead.

      Delete
  5. Those broccoli plants look so healthy, and the red and green lettuce plants are putting on quite a show too!

    Interesting how your pepper experiment worked out. It's about time for me to begin digging up a few pepper plants here. Last year the green ones did ripen up for me indoors, though it's a chore to pot them up and get them in the house.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, that's why I thought the upside-down pepper plant experiment was worth a go as potting them up is such a hassle. I doubt I would pot up the big fruited varieties, but I can see doing that for the Lemon Drop.

      Delete
  6. Your garden is still looking bountiful for this time of year. I too am clearing out the beds. Would you believe snow is in the forecast for Thursday in our area. Hoping the forecast is incorrect.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES...I would believe it as they are calling for possible flurries for us tomorrow! Hard to believe when only a couple of weeks ago we were in the 20's (70's).

      Delete
  7. Those raspberries look delicious. I'm surprised they keep bearing so late.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We planted the canes last year and they are an everbearing variety but even so, having them continue to produce until the end of October is a pleasant surprise.

      Delete
  8. Our brassicas have to stay netted all winter or there would be nothing left courtesy of the wood pigeons. Do you not have anything that attacks them in winter time?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Our kale will be all said and done by the end of the month - it's not growing very much any more so what is there is likely all there will be. My one attempt at overwintering kale was not successful, although it was a half-hearted attempt. To extend the harvest into the winter, I think kale would need protection, but in our case it's from the frigid temps. I had actually never heard of wood pigeons until I started reading about them on UK blogs!

      Delete
  9. Oh, those raspberries look yummy! And I can't believe the color on those carrots!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I grew the Starburst blend carrots mainly for the "fun" factor - they're just so pretty! I do usually find the "boring" orange carrots sweeter, but our frosts must have done some good as the Starburst are quite sweet this year.

      Delete
  10. You must be so happy to sill be harvesting produce! The raspberries look delicious and you should have a nice harvest next year! Nancy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Nancy - I'm already starting to think of ways that I'll be using and preserving that big raspberry haul next year ;)

      Delete
  11. Beautiful broccoli! What are you doing to control bugs?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Right now I'm doing absolutely nothing! Normally I keep the bed covered with netting which protects against the biggest cabbage pest, the cabbage white butterfly. I finally took it off last week...one of the benefits of our chilly weather lately is that most of the bugs have decided to turn in for the winter :)

      Delete
  12. Very envious of that broccoli! (You'd better get out there and make sure all the neighbourhood kids know what it tastes like, hehehe!). The Starburst carrots look like an interesting selection. I know lots of chefs would like to have those to play with.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha, ha...maybe a tasting booth in our driveway? I bet you even some adults would be surprised by the taste of fresh from the garden and start their own veg patch :)

      The Starburst carrots are beautiful, aren't they? I still prefer orange carrots overall as I do find them to be sweeter, but these are just so pretty that I had to include a few in the mix this year.

      Delete
  13. Totally impressed! Aside from the quantities, those broccolis look mathematically perfect.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Helen! I'll be harvesting more today - it's loving the cooler, wet weather :)

      Delete
  14. Thanks for the update on your trial of ripening peppers in the garage. I have tried that before with brussels sprouts after reading about it somewhere but they didn't really do much once pulled out of the ground.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I always figure things like that are worth a try since we all have different conditions and what works for me might not work for someone else and vice versa.

      Delete
  15. Yummy, the broccoli looks really good. Hope you've managed to get some more picked too. Hurrah for the raspberries as well, mmm.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yup...more broccoli harvested this past week (you'll be seeing that on Harvest Monday tomorrow :) - and more yet to come! Unfortunately, we've picked the last of the raspberries but am looking forward to next year which will hopefully see a big jump in the harvest.

      Delete

I appreciate and thoroughly enjoy all of your lovely comments :) Please note that in order to foil those pesky spammers, comment moderation has been enabled for older comments.