Saturday, July 2, 2011

Down on the Farm...

By the Pleasant Times Garden Expert, Annabelle.



Well, I suppose I should introduce myself as I'm new 'round here but I'll keep it short as I've got lots to show you. I'm the new editor of the "farming/gardening/homesteading" section of this a'here blog. We may wander into the kitchen at times because things must be processed from the garden. We may take a trip into the apothecary to process our herbs into various brews and medicines.... but mostly I think we'll be outside in the sunshine. And I'll try and keep it as genteel as  possible for you dear readers of this pleasant blog.. So no worries about doing chicken soup from scratch (those old hens hafta go somewheres afterall..) ;-) 
 For my first time here I'll just give you a pictorial review of happenings around here... Here we have some cukes ... just picked. I didn't have anymore room out in the garden so they were grown in a whiskey barrel and they did quite nicely...
 The out of control squash jungle.... Actually.. these pics were from over a week ago and things have grown considerably since then...
 There are tomatoes in the background there.
 Bees are busy...
 A volunteer sunflower... that was later massacred by squirrels.... This is  a "Tiger Eye" and the seeds originally came from Baker Creek.
 Sunflowers that haven't had their time in the sun .... or being the sun yet..
 Dragon's Tongue beans...Bush Buttercup squash...zucchini.... way ... too much.... zucchini.....
 A sunflower AFTER the evil squirrels attacked... It was still blooming!!!I was so sad....
 Apricots from a nearby farm.... we had so many and we weren't going to eat them all in time so I made jam/preserves...
 I love food processors.....
 To make it less candy like and more healthful .. I used Rapidura sugar just as an experiment to see how it would turn out. It did make things an interesting color to begin with but it turned out just fine. I always use less sugar so things don't get so sicky sweet and it still tastes like apricots.
 Mmmmm
 Awaiting their golden contents...I would have a picture of the final  product but somebody around here in a fit of organization put them all away before I got that far...
 Purple Podded Pole beans awaiting a transformation into Dilly Beans. Those are the best pickles and quite easy to do.
 Bees are quite busy on the lavender...
 Calendula blooms. They get picked every day and dried for later transformation into calendula oil or tincture. It is very healing to the skin for cuts, scrapes, burns... all kind of things. And they are so cheery!
 Dill flowers for the Dilly Beans... I almost never manage to time my dill and beans to come out and the same time but this time it worked...
 Bush Buttercup nearing completion.
 Australian Butter just starting out..
And my favorite bean so far... the Dragon's Tongue (also from Baker Creek). They are delicious just steamed and tossed with salt , pepper and butter... and maybe some slivered almonds. I'm always rather bummed that all purple beans turn green when cooked but at least they are pretty raw. :-) Well, that is it for today. I hope you enjoyed the small tour around the homestead...
~Annabelle
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