[gardeners] Monday and Tuesday in the garden

George Shirley (gardeners@globalgarden.com)
Tue, 05 Sep 2000 07:56:26 -0500

Yesterday I dried four trays of basil and three trays of rosemary in the old
dehydrator. Best $19.95 I ever spent at Walmart some 4 or 5 years ago.

Also cleaned up the two oregano beds, the stuff runs like crazy so I harvest
what gets out of bounds. This time it was a 5-gallon bucket with oregano tightly
packed into it. Spent a goodly part of Monday morning sitting in the shade with
a fan blowing on me stripping the leaves from the freshly washed herb. All of
that bucket full gave me three dehydrator trays of oregano. It's now well dried
and I will put it in containers today. That makes about a three quarts of
oregano this year. Friends and relatives will get fat packets of oregano for the

I counted 24 baby rosemary plants around the two I have growing. I take the
bottom limbs and pin them into the ground to start new plants. If it ever cools
off this fall I will take them out and transplant them into gallon pots as they
are so huge already. Next spring when we hold our annual plant sale they should
bring a good price. I had bad luck this year starting rosemary from seed,
something I have done for a long time with some success. This year they sprouted
and then seemed to die quickly. Suspect it was just too hot for the babies to
live. Will try again if it ever cools off.

Picked the crowder peas yesterday, just about enough for a taste. Black aphids
are sucking the life out of them so mixed up a little soapy water with a soupcon
of rubbing alcohol in it and sprayed them. Went out this morning and most are
gone so hit them again. As the sun hits them about 10 am I will go out prior to
that and wash the mix off the plants to avoid sun scald.

The eggplants are finally done, the baby eggplants were falling off while still
immature so I took all the fruit off, pruned the plants, fed them well and will
leave them into the fall to see what happens. The okra has slowed up somewhat so
they will get fertilized this morning to perk them up some. The greenbeans died
without ever setting a bean. Maybe I can plant them again (if it ever cools
off). Do I sound desparate for some cool weather?

The chiles are still producing well though. Getting about a quart a day of mixed
sweet and hot chiles. Chop and freeze the sweets for later use and am now making
pepper sauce with fresh hot chiles and a vinegar/water mix. Very good on greens
and occasionally on beans and rice or beans and cornbread. Friends and neighbors
line up to get them so am fixing up several quarts for gifts. The lady next door
is recovering from bone cancer (they caught it early) and dearly loves my hot
sauce and pepper sauce so I am keeping her supplied regularly. They are really
good neighbors and, like us, have kids in their late thirties and early forties
so they get supplied too.

Gotta go, oregano to put away and chiles to thaw and chop for the next
generation of hot sauce. Life is good even if it is hot.