Monday, September 9, 2019

Harvest Monday - 9 September 2019

Hello again from Eight Gate Farm. We are well within our historical time period of getting a first frost, but the data is old. Frost has been trending later and later in recent years. That doesn't mean it's particularly warm now, and warmth is what we need to ripen all the solanacea. So it's a waiting game.

Some peppers are ripening though, which is gratifying. Here is the first harvest of King Of The North bell pepper. But if you're a Game of Thrones fan like me, you call it King IN The North. I honestly think this is the first time I've ever gotten bell peppers red-ripe before frost.

King Of The North
Another sweet pepper to get red-ripe this week was Cornito Rosso. This is the first time growing it for me, and I'm impressed.

Cornito Rosso
On the hot side, another first harvest (and first time growing) was Serrano Tampiqueno.

Serrano Tampiqueno
The Painted Mountain dry (flour) corn was completely harvested and husked. It's now drying on racks. This year, the stalks were weaker than last year. Maybe the soil needs ammendments, and I was not diligent about thinning it. So the cobs were small, and many were poorly pollinated. But boy, are they colorful!

Painted Mountain flour corn
I've put off talking about the sweet corn this year. It's by far my favorite crop to grow and eat. Some pest got in the fenced garden and stripped the stalks of the cobs just as they were ripening. I suspect squirrels, but I set a cage trap baited with peanut butter without catching anything, so who knows? Maybe a raccoon? In any event, this was all I could salvage. Pathetic.

Temptress sweet corn
Last fall I took out most of the grape vines in the fenced garden. They were just too troublesome. But I left the vines which had crept to the fences and rooted there. This week I picked a heavy basket of grapes. They are a pink seedless variety, and very sweet. I think they might be Canadice, but I have no way of knowing. They had to be sorted through to discard the ones showing signs of black rot, but we were left with several gallon bags of good ones.

I also got the first muskmelon. As is typical for me, this is only slightly larger than a baseball, but very tasty!

Halona muskmelon
And we got the first fall raspberries, shown along with the absolute last of the blueberries.

For a sampling of continuing harvests, here are some sweet peppers.

Jimmy Nardello's, Cubanelle, Biquinho
And some hot ones too!

Anaheim, Thai Hot, Big Thai Hybrid
I planted turnips in the spring, and we ate many as saladette-types, but left a good number over the summer. They got very big, good for mashing and freezing. In fact, the largest was over 2 pounds. Actually, I think the ones with green shoulders and yellow bottoms are actually rutabagas, so I suspect some mix-up in the seed.

White Egg turnips and possibly rutabagas.
Saturday was a rainy blustery day, perfect for tackling accumulated vegetables for processing. For once I was actually useful in the kitchen...washing dishes! The Kitchen Goddess made 3 quart bags of mashed turnips, 3 of cubed turnips (rutabaga?), a quart bag of sweet corn "niblets," and a gallon bag of roasted Anaheim peppers stuffed with black beans, rice, and a little cheddar. I'm looking forward to those, you can bet! In the background are two containers of diced sweet peppers, three jars of thick rich pasta sauce, two jars of three-color pickled hot pepper rings, and two jars of 100% cayenne hot pepper sauce. A lot of work, but it was fun to do it together.

Putting food by
That's all for this week. Thanks for reading, and thanks as always to Dave at for hosting Harvest Monday.


  1. That is a shame about the sweet corn. The flour corn is truly colorful even if not up to your usual standards. I can only hope Cornito Rosso does nearly as well for you as it does for me. I don't really try and grow bell peppers any more, since I have so many problems with them But Cornito Rosso and it's yellow cousin Cornito Giallo have been dependable performers here. Of course we surely get more heat here too which favors them.

  2. Congratulations on red bell peppers! They are my favorite. It's tough to think about a first frost but I do hope things hold off a bit for you. It's so disheartening to see the garden after a hard frost.