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Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Gardening Wednesday and a Little Reminder for Those Who Preserve Garden Produce

self-seeded watercress

We had brilliant sunshine today, but man oh man was it cold out. So I worked for just a short time outdoors. I first scavenged some watercress for a salad for tonight's dinner. Watercress self-seeds all over my garden area. Each March we have watercress for a couple of weeks, all free, no work on my part except to pick. After picking greens, I hauled compost to two beds, pulled some weeds, then came back indoors. Indoors I replanted some additional onion seeds, as my first batch of seeds from 2 weeks ago only partially sprouted. I think I'll need more than 7 onions next fall.

The other thing I did today, related to gardening, was add a page to my gardening journal. I told you last time that I had a page that detailed which seeds I planted, when, and how much. This new page is for making note of which seeds I'll need to collect from my plants for garden 2023. So far, I've found I'll need more kale, red lettuce, beet, carrot, parsley, and pole and bush bean seeds. Carrots, parsley, and, to a limited extent, kale are biennials, and I have those growing in my garden from last year still. Those will go to seed in mid-summer. I'll be able to collect bean, lettuce, and beet seeds late summer from this year's plantings. In previous years, I haven't thought about which seeds I needed to collect until late in the season, sometimes too late. I'm making more of an effort to be organized with my garden this year.


Also garden-related, I've been prepping for summer preserving. Several weeks ago I found 2 more trays that fit my 25-year old dehydrator on eBay. This expands my ability to dehydrate by 50%, which should help me get through more produce and hopefully not have some of the fresh fruit become overripe waiting for spots on the trays. The new-to-me trays were used, but clearly not nearly as used as my own. The plastic is so white compared to my old ones, which have yellowed. As you can see in the photo on the box, this model is designed for adding trays (original came with 4). I hope to find another couple of trays eventually.


In addition to the dehydrator trays, I've also bought the lids I'll need for preserving. The past two years I waited till later in spring to get lids, which meant I had a hard time finding the lids only. There appears to still be a lot of supply right now. So, just a little reminder to order any you might need for this year soon. 

That's it for today. I hope you all had a great Wednesday and are moving on to a lovely Thursday. Enjoy your day!


3 comments:

  1. This is the time of year when I start to crave fresh greens. I bet you are enjoying your watercress.

    We have a similar-appearing food dehydrator. I never realized you could (potentially) add more trays. We've been enjoying our own dried herbs this winter. I was just thinking yesterday about how much they improve the flavor of basic frugal foods (I made Italian beef and veggie soup last night using our stash of ground venison). Without them, the soup would have been "meh".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Kris,
      I agree -- garden herbs add so much to ordinary foods. Even rice and beans taste so much better when I add some herbs like thyme or garden garlic. Your Italian soup sounds delicious and I'm glad you have those dried herbs to boost the flavor.

      My dehydrator is an American Harvester. The manufacturer has changed and I think is now Nesco. The newer models take a slightly different tray. But the good news is those trays are available at lots of places, such as Amazon. I believe you can have as many as 10 trays going at a time on one or these dehydrators.

      Have a great day, Kris!

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    2. I just checked on the number of trays you can use at a time, and it looks like you can use as many as 20 or 30 trays depending on the model!

      Delete

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