Thursday, August 10, 2017

A Bumper Crop Of 'Maters...

It's been a fabulous growing season here!  Rain, rain and more rain, and hot humid days have given every plant the extra boost needed to grow.  Even the weeds.  :(

Like most other crops, my tomatoes have over achieved this year.  I planted six different plant of each...and they've gone wild!

I planted Celebrity, Early Girl, Mountain Fresh, Amish Paste, Abe Lincoln and ??  I can't seem to remember the last one, and the tag is missing.  All of them are producing large fruit that are ripening evenly without cracking (from all the rain) except for Mr Lincoln.  I don't think I'll plant that one again. Those tomatoes are yellow on the shoulders and have mostly cracked. Lucky for the chickens, their pen is right next to the garden, and they get the rejects for snack!

This morning I picked a large bucket full, and made my first batch of salsa.  I tried to make it a little on the hot side, since Eric and Jim both like it better that way, but I'm not sure I was too successful. Eric will be living in an on campus apartment this year at college, so I figured I'd send a stash with him. Hopefully he and his room mates will like it even if it's mild.

It looks like tomorrow or Saturday I'll have another bunch ready for picking...

My favorite cherry tomato ever is Sweet Baby Girl.  I've not been disappointed in her this summer either.  These beauties are just the right size for a bite sized taste, and they're wonderfully sweet...

This afternoon's harvest...

...and the batch of salsa that I made this morning is bubbling away in the canner as I see...I'm not wasting time, I'm multi tasking!  :)

Jim is about half finished with fourth cutting hay...Jenna is mowing the yard...Eric is at work...and we're enjoying our last week together as a family before both kids head off to college next weekend.  It's going to be really, really different around here as we do the "empty nest" thing for the first time!

What's happening where you are?  In your garden? On your farm?

Here's a link to the salsa recipe that we like!


  1. I had to laugh, I saw your jars simmering away earlier. I had ONE plant, a Better Boy. The chickens (or raccoons) have eaten all the tomatoes from the middle on down. I have nice ones at the top... but I have lost my taste for tomatoes. If I get any, I'll be giving them away.

  2. Your tomatoes looks wonderful Isn't nice to have that water bath canner going and then the sweetest sound in the world, that pop when the jars seal.
    Wow, already? An empty nest? I think you will love it. It takes some getting used to, even though mine isn't completely empty, you will get used to it faster than you think. :) Its a nice season of life.

  3. I am jealous! There is nothing I love better than fresh tomatoes. We have three on the vine. Yes, you read that right, only 3! The largest is about 1 1/2". I don't recall the variety, but it is one that matures in a short period of time, since I was late planting the garden. We've also had nights in the 50's and tomatoes don't particularly care for that, so the prospect of others maturing is pretty slim. Oh well. Maybe the new owners of the house will be blessed with a late frost and they will enjoy the tomatoes!

  4. Your tomatoes look tall, healthy and plentiful. I'm sure your son can add additional hot sauce if he finds it too mild. Nice batch of salsa and that canner is huge...
    Wow, you're on your 4th cut already...

    I'm sure you'll enjoy one part of having the house to yourself but I'm sure you'll also miss the kids' help.

    We had a very wet spring then we got lots of heat and humidity but no rain so I had to water the gardens and my front lawn is brown.

    I've picked 4ripe Roma tomatoes and a handful cherry tomatoes and everything else in the garden except for beans. I planted them very late but I can pick from my daughter's garden.

    Enjoy the rest of August.
    Hugs, Julia

  5. Good luck empty nesting. I'm still waiting for one ripe tomato. I will have to try sweet girl. The cherry tomatoes I planted this year are all grow and no show. Fun to see what every one is harvesting.

  6. I am incredibly jealous of your tomato crop. Homemade salsa! You should share your recipe here (unless it's a secret ingredient kind of thing!) -Jenn

    1.'s a post I did a long while ago, with the salsa recipe included! It's delicious!

  7. Wonder if you've ever tried dehydrating tomatoes? We have a small dryer and have finally settled on drying most of our crop. We can fit a bushel of them into three ziplock bags. They keep just fine on a shelf and add so much to sauces plus are a great snack.

  8. Alicia, Yea for garden produce and homemade salsa! I'm sure you took advantage of a few fun things before the kids headed off to school. Empty Nest will be an adjustment. My Mom told me it was like an amputation to the family when I left for SDSU.

    I didn't plant a garden this year and really miss it. My garden was so so last year and just when it started looking good it got hailed out. I didn't have the heart to plant due to the current drought.

    I have talked to one person that has a good garden this year. Luckily it's one of my closest friends and she loves to share!

  9. I started canning tomatoes last week! It's been a good year, I agree. Salsa is so tricky to get the heat right - I don't know if the canner alters the heat of the hot peppers or what, but I seem to either make mild or really hot salsa. Sighhh


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