Monday, August 24, 2020

Harvest Monday - 24 August 2020

Welcome to another Harvest Monday update from Eight Gate Farm. Though they have slowed, we are still getting a number of "first harvests of the year," and as usual I will lead off with them.

I picked the first "Pineapple" tomato. This is an old indeterminate heirloom of uncertain parentage. It's certainly the most beautiful, and until later in the week, the largest tomato of the season, weighing one pound eleven ounces.

Pineapple tomato
Inside it's just as beautiful.

Pineapple tomato
So how's it taste? I'd have to say it's the strangest tomato I've ever had. Very little tomato flavor, more like an unsweet melon and just as juicy. No, not at all like a pineapple; it just looks like one inside. Again, it's a first impression, so we'll see how later ones taste.

I picked the first "Stellar" tomatoes. This is a disease-resistant determinate slicer that I've grown before, with good flavor.

I picked the first "Iron Lady" determinate tomatoes. This is another one claiming not only to be resistant to early and late blights, but also has some tolerance to Septoria Leaf Spot, which is my biggest problem here. I tried it last year, but the plant did not grow well (none of the tomatoes did). I haven't tasted it yet, but will report when I do.

Iron Lady
I picked the first Sugar Rush Peach peppers. I grew them for the first time last year, and roasted them before sampling as was the recommendation. They were way too spicy to eat, even for me! But they did make a very interesting hot sauce. They're very pretty too.

Sugar Rush Peach peppers
I picked the first Ancho/Poblano peppers. On the left is the open-pollinated variety, and on the right is "Rellenos Best Hybrid." The hybrid is actually inferior in my opinion, with many fruit getting blossom-end rot and dropping. No point in growing it again, as the open-pollinated is fine.

O. P. poblanos and Rellenos Best Hybrid
I've always struggled to grow big onions for some reason, and this year is probably the worst. Here's the entire crop of Red Marble and Patterson. Small onions are just annoying to use.

Our tiny peach tree gave us a tiny amount of tiny peaches. But no matter, they are delightful, so sweet and juicy!

Reliance peaches
For a sampling of continuing harvests, here's the last of the Kenearly Yellow-Eye beans, now finishing drying indoors.

A few more artichokes.

Tavor artichokes
More jalapeno peppers.

Left: Early Jalapeno, right: Jalapeno Gigantia
Some sweet Cubanelle peppers.

And the tomatoes are just pouring in. Here are the beefsteaks. At one point in the week we had 20 on the counter. The largest is a "Porterhouse" at the top right, weighing just under two pounds.

And many paste, slicers, and "one-biters."

By the end of the week we had 17 pounds of processing tomatoes, so The Kitchen Goddess canned 5 1/2 quarts of rich, red stewed tomatoes.

Have you experienced this? With the dramatic increase in the number of gardeners due to COVID concerns, there's apparently also an increase in the number of people canning. As a result, all our local sources of canning supplies have run out. We've had to order lids online.

Again I close with a picture of the weekly harvest from the community garden plot shared by TKG and her mother.

That's all for last week. This week should be interesting, as I plan to bring in many of the winter squash. Looks like it's going to be a bumper crop! Thanks for reading, and thanks again to Dave at for giving us the opportunity to post on Harvest Monday.


  1. Lovely harvest! I’ve heard lots of folks say they’re having a hard time finding canning supplies, both locally and around the country. Our local grocery store was proud to announce they got a new shipment in this weekend.

    After seeing the seed shortages this spring, I thought this might be the case so I stocked up and ordered a dozen boxes each of regular and wide mouth lids from Fleet Farm, where I usually find the best prices. They were sold out when I checked earlier this months, and lots of other online retailers/resellers are jacking up prices.

    1. Thanks, Liz. I had ordered all my seeds well before COVID hit, and I thought I was smart, but completely forgot about other gardening and canning supplies. Looks like you made a good decision.

  2. You've got some whopper tomatoes there! Like you, the Sugar Rush Peach peppers were too hot for me to eat, but made for great hot sauce especially when mixed with milder ones. I've not heard of the Stellar tomato before, but it sounds like a candidate for me here.

    1. Thanks, Dave. Stellar is not a bad choice in disease-prone areas. Of course nothing is immune.

  3. I was lucky enough to find some canning lids but the store was totally out of jars. Amazing! I wonder how long after COVID that people will continue to grow veggies.

    1. Yes, I wonder too. A garden is a labor of love, with emphasis on labor. I think many people aren't prepared for that.

  4. I think that sometimes the smaller fruit is very sweet and rich in flavor. And again, look at those artichokes. The community garden plot your wife tends looks productive too.

    1. Thanks, Sue. And The Kitchen Goddess thanks you too!