This weekend’s haul is less about what I bought at the farmer’s market and more about what I ordered online. But, as always, here’s what I bought at the farmer’s market:
- Bay leaves
- Red bell pepper
- Dandelion greens
- Cherry tomatoes
- Apple sage sausage
- Cheddar jalapeno brats
All of the above was more or less planned (well, maybe not those brats). Onto my impulse buys:
Garlic Grow Bags
I ordered these from Gardener’s Supply Company. Fell for one of their emails hook, line and sinker. But how can growing my own garlic be bad? It can’t. And I like these bright blue bags. I didn’t order enough container soil from them, but I had extra of my own on hand. I did have to buy fertilizer to supplement the container soil that I did buy from them. They sent me two types of garlic — California Early and Chesnok Red. The latter will be ready for harvest (hopefully) by early summer and I had two full heads of that type. It’s a hardneck garlic with purple cloves. The other is a softneck variety and I only got one head of that type. It’s apparently the kind you often see braided. I can’t wait to try that myself.
My other impulse buy was a food dehydrator. I’d been thinking of getting one of these for a while now. I realize the title of this blog is Freezer Full and I’m still committed to filling my freezer as full as possible with my own home-cooked goodies. However, as every severe storm reminds me, there is one huge flaw to relying on my freezer to store food — power loss would be catastrophic. Hours and hours of work gone and hundreds of dollars wasted. Meanwhile, I’d probably be hungry. Dehydrating food is a better solution because the resulting stored foods are less likely to spoil. Never fear, however, as you’re supposed to refrigerate or freeze most dehydrated foods to extend their shelf life. Therefore, my freezer will continue to be full, even if I rely more and more on the dehydrator.
For my first dehydration experiment, I dried the fresh bay leaves I bought at the farmer’s market. I’m almost out of the bottled kind. My house smells so good right now. I never realized how good bay leaves smell! Shows what I’ve been missing by buying the store-bought kind. I may buy more fresh bay leaves next weekend just to put in a jar or something.
In addition to setting up the garlic grow bags, I put the winter coat back on the VegTrug — I put the greenhouse cover on and then put the other cover I have for it on top of that. This is in the hopes of staving off the inevitable first frost. My spinach plants aren’t dead, but they’re not thriving either. I’ll be lucky to get a side salad out of those. The kale seems to have slowed down. I might get a meal out of those plants. There are carrots left in the soil, the chives are still kicking and the rosemary doesn’t seem to care what’s going on — it just rolls with it.
I had to dig out one of my hostas in the side yard to make room for the garlic grow bags, but I stopped short of removing the ones in the front yard yet. I did clear out some weeds out front and trimmed back the hydrangeas. I mowed the lawn yesterday, but some spots were too long for the rotary mower.