Monday, June 21, 2010

Weekend Recap

We had a busy weekend, and I couldn't seem to find any time to write a post, so I thought a weekend recap might serve to highlight some of the happenings at our little urban farm. In addition to garden maintenance and cleaning the coop, here's what you missed.

My zucchini plants were attacked by squash vine borers, and since this has never happened to me before, I caught it too late. I have one zucchini plant that is barely hanging on and a few squash plants that don't seem to be affected. So I replanted some zucchini seeds and hope for a late summer harvest. Late is better than nothing, so we'll see what happens. I was fortunate enough to be given some zucchini by a co-worker last week, so this weekend I made the most of it. I used some of it to make veggie burgers for the freezer. We love these burgers, and they are WAY better than the frozen burgers at the store. They have saved my life more than once for a quick fix when I'm too tired to cook. The rest of it I used to make zucchini cakes one night for supper and also an ingenious recipe for mock 'apple' pie. Amazingly this pie, using zucchini, tastes like apple pie.

The same co-worker also gave me some cucumbers, not enough to go to the trouble of canning, but just enough for some refrigerator pickles. If you've never made refrigerator pickles, you should give them a try! Easy to make and delicious to eat!

My jalapeno plants are rocking right now, so I sliced up at least a couple dozen peppers and threw them on the dehydrator. I could have canned them, but I dried some jalapenos last year to see how I would like them, and they worked wonderfully for many recipes, so I think drying them is the way to go for me. Plus, I put the dehydrator outside on my deck and it doesn't heat up my kitchen like canning would.

All work and no play makes me a dull girl, so we hit the town Saturday night and went to the ASA BMX Big Air Triples Competition. Wow, seeing a double front flip on a BMX bike is amazing. This kid did 3 or 4 double front flips throughout the night and each time made it seem so easy. And he's only 15. I wish I had that much talent going for me at 15.

We got up early to go wild blackberry picking on Sunday. We have a couple of places we go, but our favorite is a huge field full of blackberries canes. This is what we found when we arrived.

THE CITY MOWED THE WHOLE FIELD TO THE GROUND! Add on the fact that it has been extremely hot and dry lately and the disappointment mounts because most of the berries we did find were dried up. We have been able to pick about 2 quarts, but that is nothing compared to what we usually pick. I put them in the freezer for now and will use what little I have from last year to make some blackberry jam.

We checked our bees last night, by ourselves, without our mentors. Going solo with no supervision is a big deal in our book. We took our time and looked at each frame for signs of queen cells, new eggs being laid, and capped brood and honey. Everything seems to be going smoothly. It was definitely very intimidating as the population has grown with new bees hatching daily. It seems like we have a good productive queen though.

Who says cats and chickens can't get along? Here, OP2 and Pearl share a leftover biscuit from breakfast.

Until next post, happy homesteading,


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