Weekly Garden Update: 10/23

We went to the NC State Fair yesterday, and had a wonderful time.

Among other enticements like the food, the dairy goat show and all the other livestock, and the Village of Yesteryear, we spent some time examining the preserved food, grown food, and baking categories for the state competitions.  It is our considered opinion that our hot pepper jelly, some of the things we grow, and some of the other things we preserve, including dried items, are worthy of being submitted in next year’s competitions.

This week we harvested more greens.  We got a few more peppers, a couple tomatoes, and some green beans.

Garden shot

I harvested oregano and dried it in the oven.

We caught some deer coming up into the garden to nibble on the squash plant – the dog raced out the doggy door, down the stairs, and out the other doggy door in order to chase them into the woods.

The red clover in the boxes and the crimson and white clovers in the yard are germinating!  Lettuces, greens, beets, spinach, and carrots are growing.

Still been too hot in the days to plant garlic, so our projected planting date is still October 30th.

This is a picture of a close-up of what mycorrhizal fungi does to our garden mulch.  Yes, it’s a full color picture.

Mycorrhizal fungi

Given the slow down in garden information, I am predicting an increase in weekly cooking posts of some sort or another.

In that vein, I want to speak about bacon.  It has been very very difficult to get real cured bacon with the changes in our eating habits.  By which I mean, humanely-raised “pastured” natural hogs that were humanely slaughtered and raised without unnecessary antibiotics or with growth hormones.  People who raise this kind of meat rarely get it cured in a real fashion, i.e., with nitrites.  It is interesting to me that the stuff some companies use to cure bacon without adding nitrites actually results in the finished product having a higher percentage of nitrites from a chemical process than if they just added the nitrites to begin with.  And there are a lot of people that sell or process uncured bacon.   But bacon has a really short shelf-life without nitrites and you really can’t freeze it, the taste of the fat goes “off” very quickly.   Consequently we have been unable to locate a bacon that I have been happy with.  But today we discovered a regional bacon producer who uses humanely raised and slaughtered pastured pork, who uses nitrites to actually cure the bacon — and they’re only in Alabama.  We bought 6 slices, and we’ll try it and let you know how it tastes.

Garden box

Garden box 2

Garden box 3

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3 Responses to “Weekly Garden Update: 10/23”

  1. Madame C Says:

    So much to harvest still in your garden! I envy your climate…

    I agree that your hot pepper jelly must be good enough for the competition next year:) I have not tried it yet, but just reading the recipe is enough to convince me!

    Have a great week,
    Charlotta
    Cesar’s Garden

  2. meemsnyc Says:

    You should definitely submit to next year’s state fair. Your greens are looking awesome! We’ve been concerned with humanely raised pig also. This year, we bought a pig and my husband’s dad is raising it on their farm. That way we know what the pig is eating and how it’s raised.
    http://nycgardening.blogspot.com/2010/10/sweet-but-ohrotten.html

  3. kitsapFG Says:

    We always come away from the fair feeling that way – but I never manage to enter anything the following year. You should NOT follow my example – and actually enter something next year!

    The garden is looking fabulous. Good work to your pup for chasing off the deer. We lost our elderly dog almost a year ago and don’t have the garden patroller on duty any more. The racoons and other critters visiting the garden are starting to increase as a result.

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