Sunday, June 14, 2009

Our Baby Garden

It finally warmed up enough for us to plant our garden a couple of weeks ago. We are having a small garden this year. Just enough to keep Mr. Clay busy. Our growing season out here in the desert is only from Memorial Day thru Sept/Oct. when Mother Nature decides to freeze it off.

Ms.Robin watched on as we planted.

I know you probably think with being in the desert, we'd have a longer growing period. But we still freeze all thru the month of May.

Normally we have a huge garden; it's a 40' x 40' area. We usually grow 30-40 each of tomatoes, cherry hot peppers, anaheim peppers, jalapeno peppers, 10-15 squash, zucchinis, and habaneros. Then the rows of lettuce, peas, radishes, and carrots. Even though we hook up a irrigation watering system, it's still a full time job watering and weeding. And then, when everything starts coming on, it's not unusual for me to be in the kitchen 10-15 hours a day roasting peeling, freezing, canning, and pickling. When I make salsa, it's not by the bowlful. I make salsa by the 5 gallon bucket full!

When I first learned to can, I would make batches of salsa and call it mild or medium or hot. It wasn't the greatest method of measuring hottness. Then I began to name them-There was the Dragon series-Baby Dragon, Dragon Spit, Dragon Fire; there was the cute name series- wimpy,wimpy,wimpy salsa, Killer Salsa, Killer H. Salsa, This Is The Salsa (TITS for short). That was a funny one. I was down in my kitchen one evening and one of our friends called and told my husband they liked my TITS. We got a good laugh over that one.

And people would continually ask me "how many peppers are in this?" Like I counted? Like I cared? I figured if it was spicy enough for Mr. Clay and me, then we were happy. So last time I named the salsas after songs with numbers. There was 25 or 6 to 4, 50 ways (renamed '50 ways to eat your salsa' in stead of 'ways to leave your lover'), Get your Kicks on Route 66, 76 Tombones..and of course 110 Clarinets were right behind, Around the World in 80 Days, You're Gonna Cry 96 Tears...and then the last batch was Mega H Death. The number in the song was the number of jalapenos in that 5 gallon batch of salsa...with the exception of 25 or 6 to 4-It was only a 4 gallon batch. Mega H Death was the last batch of the season and had all the last of the crops in it-over 200 jalapenos and the H stood for all the habaneros! It is pure fire in salsa form.

This year we only have 5 tomatoes, 4 jalapenos, 8 anaheim chiles, 4 habaneros and the peas , lettuce, radishes, and carrots, zuchini and squash.

Here is my gardening tip(which Mr. Clay refused to follow): if you mix your carrot and radish seeds together in a cup and plant them together, the radishes will come up shade and the delicate carrot sprouts. the radishes will be grown up and harvested just about the time your carrots really start beginning to grow their roots.

Our radishes have sprouted, and so have the zuchinis and squashes.

We bought the tomatoes and peppers, and they are beginning to shoot up.

Everything has sprouted now with the exception of the lettuce. I'm not sure Mr. Clay has kept it damp enough, but we shall see.
As for an update on his health-A couple of weeks ago he was getting out of bed and coughed and separated the cartilage on his ribs. So the Dr.s have begun weaning him off of the steroids. Not a fun time for either of us. His strength is waning and he is super grouchy, to put it mildly. It is difficult at best to be a caregiver to one who is terminal.
As for my job search- it still continues. Every week I get a few more good promising prospects. One of these days I'll land the right one. I hope it's real soon. We have survived this whole year now on less than $5K ! That's quite an accomplishment, I think. Have a Great Day everyone :)

1 comment:

Sinclair said...

my problem is that I am unbalanced with 15 tomato plants, only 4 pepper plants, and only 6 onion plants. I am learning to can this year.

I also like to dehydrate some of my harvest.