Well, here we are. A couple of weeks into fall, yet the days are still beautiful and warm. So warm, in fact, that we still have flowers blooming all over the garden. The cold snap that we had didn’t last, and the warmer weather is tricking all of our plants into thinking that it’s still summer! While the nights are definitely cooler, and the real cold is on it’s way any day now, we’re trying enjoy these last nice days while we can. And, I guess I should clarify, that “real cold” in Southern Oregon is really not that cold at all, comparative to many parts of the US, but we do have our fair share of lows in the 20’s and 30’s. We picked this region to homestead in partially because of the climate, and I have to say I absolutely love the weather here a majority of the time.
The roses in particular have been absolutely amazing since May, and I honestly can’t believe that they are still blooming! They came with the place that we rent, and in the past I would have scoffed at the idea of planting roses just for the sake of pretty flowers, but now I can see why people do. The fact that we’re still getting blooms (there are more buds out there opening up as I type!) is enough for me to rethink my past judgements on these beautiful flowers.
We also still have calendula blooming, which is awesome because I’m drying them to make things like my calendula cream. This one had a cool little spider on it, do you see it?
Behind the calendula, we were surprised to see our first nasturtium flower! We planted the seeds a bit late and not in the greatest area, so while we got some green growth out of them I never expected them to flower. This little beauty opened up just a few days ago!
Over in the permaculture swale bed, apparently one of the squash plants thinks it has another chance, because all of the sudden there are more squash blossoms! I don’t have the heart to tell them that they will never produce squash, but I do appreciate the effort.
The baby eggplant that I thought would soon die from the cold is actually still growing. We may just get a chance to eat this guy yet!
While it still seems like summer in many ways, we are keeping busy with fall doings, such as roasting a whole chicken for dinner about once per week. This is quite possibly our favorite meal, and it’s nice to not have to worry about heating up the kitchen too much.
Since we’ve been in a plethora of tomatoes, even ripening green ones off the vine inside the house, we decided one night that something had to be done about them. We had already canned tomato sauce, and we had a ton of peppers as well, so we consulted our Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving and decided on a recipe called “Zesty Salsa” that also included a bunch of peppers. So, on a late night whim, we whipped up a big ol’ batch of this salsa, starting with blanching and peeling the tomatoes, of course.
This task wasn’t as hard as we thought it would be. We ended up canning eight jars and it turned out absolutely wonderful! I highly recommend the Zesty Salsa recipe from that book if you have a ton of tomatoes and peppers and don’t know what to do with them.
Of course, like always, when I was trying to take a picture of the salsa, Cosmo the Kitten had to see what was happening.
I love the reflection of his face on the lid of the jar! His fascination with the salsa only lasted about two seconds, however, because the wild turkeys started to move through the property. Then he immediately went on turkey watch!
And that’s about it for this past week! Fall flowers and zesty salsa make everyone happy. Hope you had a great week as well. See you again in a couple of days!