Wednesday, August 5, 2009

the invasion begins.

aphids, loopers, and powdery mildew, oh my!

oh my indeed. my once lush and beautiful garden is now depressingly wilted, and in some spots, bare. between the powdery mildew and aphids, we've sacrificed the evening primrose. i should probably pull the lettuce and spinach, both of which bolted some time ago.

word of advice, future self - when the planting instructions tell you how far apart to plant your little sprouts, follow them. i don't doubt that overcrowding has contributed to the problem. and my sugar snap pea vines are wilted and yellow. i think i'm going to test the acidity of the soil. i don't know. i've got my hands in too many projects right now, so it's hard to think straight and figure out what could possibly be contributing to some weird plant diseases.

my cherry tomatoes are finally starting to come in. my eggplant, however, is still doing lamely. we've gotten heads on the broccoli...finally. they're tiny so far. and no more peppers, aside from the yellow wax ones which will be pickled this weekend.

so far, in addition to the jams i have put up, there has also been cherry preserves in an almond syrup (tastes phenomenal mixed into plain yogurt), and yesterday, a bushel of peaches. part went into the dehydrator. most were blanched, quartered, and packed in a light wildflower honey syrup. i know dumping raw honey into boiling water negates the healthy nature of the raw-ness. but that honey is delicious and i will have wes pick up a lot more from the farmer's market. a pain in the ass. i am having a hard time telling if the peaches are done or not. i mean, there's ones that are obviously done, but others...

i've got a few new projects i plan to take on as well. i've been charged with making a hot pepper jam (ew ew ew) and a habanero vodka (ew to the tenth degree). can you tell there is a spicy food lover in my life? i am tempted not to make these things for him, as he suffers from gerd, and hot food gives him horrible, horrible indigestion. but hey, it's his own body, so...

on the gluten free front - rechallenged. it did not go well. we are talking unholy levels of nausea and cramping. anxiety attack (yeah yeah, i know, par for the course for me). brain fog. exhaustion. runny nose and sneezing. okay, then. i get the message. had the anti-gliadin, IgG and IgM blood tests run, they came back negative. Does this mean i'll push myself to eat more gluten? probably not. i feel better for not eating it, so GF for me, i guess. we've had a good number of gf bread baking failures. bob's red mill makes delicious bread mix...that we never fail to mess up in some way. i still have not gotten motivated enough to make my own mix. soon, soon.

reading - still reading the four season harvest. haven't been reading too terribly much lately. or getting much of anything done. my bad.