Wednesday, September 21, 2011

all the little things that make life good

zucchini, hot peppers, grape tomatoes and a surprise purple bell pepper

Picking little veggies in the garden, playing with little kids.  Those are the little things, but only physically.

I walked my son and daughter home from preschool today, which is now in its second week.  We stroll slowly home, kids finding things along the way to be interested in, a stick to poke things with, or each other.  A little vacant lot covered with grass-- my daughter lingered at the edge of it, looking at me as if to find out if it was OK to run on it.  Yes- I nodded- and she ran out maybe a third of the way into the lot and ran back, giggling the whole time.  My son and I had to do the same then, and we would have kept it up, but then he found a stick, and wanted me to hold him up so that he could try to hit the branch of the tree with his new stick and see if he could make leaves fall down.

And we do that most of the way home.  It's a five-minute walk by myself and about a half hour with them.  But I enjoy it a lot more with them.  They see things that I would have missed, ask questions that I wouldn't have thought to ask- at least not in the last 30 years or so, and are never in that much of a hurry to actually get anywhere.

We ran around the yard playing hide-and-go-seek for a while after we got home, and I picked a few late peppers from the garden, as well as some grape tomatoes and zucchini.  I found the most beautiful purple bell pepper that I've ever seen tucked away in the broccoli patch, being overgrown by squash.  I would have picked it while it was still green had I seen it, but I'm glad it hid well enough to make it to maturity.  I wouldn't have belived it was possible to grow a pepper quite this purple, at least not in Minnesota, if I hadn't picked it myself.

I'm not sure what I'll do with it.  I'm not a huge fan of  bell peppers, but Gita likes them.  It may end up in a curry at some point, but I feel like I should do something showier with it, I'm just not sure what.

ripening tomatoes

With the cool fall weather we've had this week, I've started bringing in more tomatoes to ripen inside.  Not all yet- I'm still holding out hope that we'll have a hot indian summer in October and I'll get a bunch more- but that's looking less likely.

At least we avoided the freeze last week.  The outer suburbs froze, but the city and inner burbs' growing season continues.  I didn't even lose my basil, which, from listening to the forecast, I thought would be a lost cause.  Another reason to love living in St.Paul.

cream of saskatchewan watermelon

To the right you'll see Cream of Saskatchewan watermelon- a seed I ordered and was very excited about.  After tasting them a couple of times- not so excited.  It's nice to have a watermelon that produces well in the north- but this isn't a big winner.  The fruit is softball-size, flavor isn't very sweet and there are a lot of seeds.  I suppose I should appreciate it for it's extreme cold-hardiness and short time to fruiting, but I don't think I'll plant it again.

What I will do is try to rate all of the seeds I bought this spring in a future post.  Once the hard freeze comes, and I can really take stock of this years' garden, I'll review them all.  I promise.  Just don't be too hard on me if it takes until January.

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