Garden Share Collective: February...

29 February, 2016

I'm back again doing the GSC, that awesome garden share session hosted by Krystie and Kate.

The theme for this month is Preserve, which I've been doing bits and pieces of.

A week or so ago I had a very busy week, and so was picking and shoving the produce into the fridge, to be dealt with at a later date.

On the weekend, I pulled it all out and set it out on the kitchen bench.


I really didn't realise I grew that much stuff. It's easy when its a basket here, and a bit there, and it mostly gets eaten. But a weeks worth really adds up.

The tomatoes I had already planned for stashing for making passata and salsa. These got cleaned and chopped then into plastic bags and into the freezer.

The beans were cleaned, sliced and par-boiled, then cooled in iced water, drained and then into zip-lock bags ready for the freezer.


A few extra corn cobs (not pictured) got sliced off the cob and also went into zip-lock bags for the freezer.


 There is now a nice little stash in the freezer for future use.


Also frozen was some plums for future plum cakes.

I also pressure canned chicken stock (from stashed bones of a few roasted chickens), and while that was going I also bottled some apples I was gifted from a friend's dad's tree.


The preserving has not been limited to bottling, but also included the drying of the Anzac peaches.


Future preserving will be the passata and salsa stash for the year, some more frozen goods including beans and eggplants, and I'll probably try my hand at pickling some cucumbers.

Planting:
  • Brassicas - broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage seeds have all been sown. Some have already been planted out, while others are awaiting space to be freed up.
  • Carrot, beetroot, parsnip and radish seed.
  • Cucumber seed, in the polytunnel.

Harvesting:
  • Lots of tomatoes
  • Beans, though I've now stopped cropping and am letting the rest go to keep for next years' seed.
  • Eggplants
  • Cucumbers, which are now pretty much at an end
  • Zucchini and squash
  • Capsicums and peppers
  • Corn, but all gone now 
  • Plums, though the last of these have been picked this week
  • Figs, though not many are left now
  • Apples, mid season St Edmund's Pippin
  • Blackberries
  • Pears, the first of the Durondeau have been picked

To Do:
  • Keep pruning and tying up tomatoes to try and stave off blight and rust diseases and keep the plants going a little longer
  • Pull out the corn and zucchini currently taking up bed space and plant out the remaining brassicas
  • Prune and tie up the thornless blackberry
  • Graft the plum, apricot and peach
  • Plant more carrot and beetroot seeds
  • Keep watering the late season apples to try and ensure a good crop

That's it for my February garden. How is yours going?

6 comments:

  1. We are experiencing an early Spring here in my part of the world and I noticed that my green onions, that I just let overwinter, are coming up strong! :) Everything id in the budding out stages, about 2 months before normal. I am hoping to pull some of the raspberries that we have grown and then frozen in previous years out and make some syrups to use throughout the rest of the year.

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    1. Oh how I wish we were back in spring! Syrups are great, but if you have lots of raspberries and don't mind experimenting raspberry vinegar is nice too!

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  2. You have been busy! You have a great store of home grown goodness to use in the coming months. You are very organised with your planting too. I am yet to start the brassica. Have a great month and thanks for joining in.

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    1. Cheers. It feels a bit hectic at the moment trying to ensure nothing gets wasted.
      I have sowed brassica seed late and paid the price in lack of produce, which motivates me to get them in on time!

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  3. What a wonderful haul. I especially love those purple beans. It's almost a shame that they turn green when you cook them.

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    Replies
    1. It is a bit of a shame. I often eat them fresh in salads so preserve the colour that way, but for freezing they need to be cooked!

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