May 5, 2009
First Spring Harvest
And it's......STRAWBERRIES, LOL! I just went outside to "walk the estate" and assess the damage from last night's severe weather and I found the first 2 ripe strawberries, which will actually be the 2nd harvest of the year since I am going to count the 2 leeks I pulled in March that wintered over. We promptly took a picture and they went down the hatch. Finn said "Mommy, they taste like the ones we picked at the farm", to which I explained to him "no, they're better because WE grew them" :)
Also a pic of the peas, which just the past week are going like gangbusters now. Can't wait, but they never seem to make it to the freezer for stash! I am going to remember to do fall peas this year so we have some for winter.
On the weather note, our area had the works last night: severe thunderstorms, wind, downpours, tornado warnings - I was terrified for my seedlings, but amazingly there was no damage. I hope the same for those of you who went through it. I thank the raised beds and the fact some other seedlings were planted in my heavily mulched borders. I think if they had been planted in the unmulched ground they would surely have washed away. It's amazing how I took the safety of the basement for granted in the Midwest. When that kind of weather happens here, we have limited options to take cover.
I now live in the land of sand, swamps, high water tables and NO basements! That is definitely on my list of future-house needs: a basement for severe weather/canning storage/squirrel attacks, and my own version of a harvest kitchen with a huge walk in pantry and a mudroom! Hmmm, my mom has all that at the house I couldn't wait to leave to go "see the world"...well, Mom - I've seen it and I want back in...can the kids come, too?!!!
*An update to my fruit leather attempt:
While delicious...this is the amount that resulted from having my countertop oven running for 4 hours! This will be devoured in one kid-snack sitdown! Bottom line: Yummy, but this is definitely not homesteading/being green or cheap! I think to do this without wasting time and money it needs to be done the old-fashioned way with screens in the sun. The yield would have been much greater with no energy wasted, but with our humidity here my options are limited. I did, however, use my 6 jars of too-runny jam to redo the experiment in my food dehydrator. I lined the trays with parchment paper and it held all 6 jars at once and turned it on at 10 p.m. and it was done this morning at 7. Greater yield, less energy wasted, so a compromise has been found!
You can tell by my frequent postings that it has been raining all day so I can't get outside, my house is already clean, and I am minus one child today :) This doesn't happen too often!