Normal is actually good, even if it means you may get wet!

For the first time in a long time the garden is looking a little soggy

For the first time in a long time the garden is looking a little soggy

I’m sitting here listening to the sound of a steady, but not too heavy rain falling.  It just seems a little odd.  We have had very little rain since December and there are all these reports about how dry the summer was, breaking records all over the place.  But I won’t bore you with details about the drought as I could go on forever because in extreme weather there is so much information available.

With ‘normal’ weather, no one bats an eye.  There aren’t news reports about how we have had normal weather for more than 10 days in a row.  No one talks about it when they meet up in the street –“Oh what normal weather we are having…”  People take it for granted.

I have more peppers than you can shake a stick at!

I have more peppers than you can shake a stick at!

But we gardeners are in tune with the weather because the plants tell us what is going on – a limp looking tomato plant soon lets us know there hasn’t been rain in ages and it wants a drink, carrots floating away tells us there is too much water.   But drought aside, my summer garden wasn’t too bad and I have a freezer full of fresh produce waiting for a cold bleak winters day to remind us all of how lovely summer was.  Having said that I think I took the endless sunny days a tiny bit for granted as now that it’s raining I am disappointed that I can’t go out and garden whenever I’m ready to.  I have to work around the weather.  But I have things to do and I might not be able to get out there when the rain stops.

Now that last statement may seem a little selfish, being as this is exactly the kind of rain needed to break a drought and heal the earth – a soft steady rain that will slowly soak into the parched soil, restoring it to normal conditions.  It’s just after over three months of gardening whenever I want, I’ve been a little spoilt and some may say I’ve become set in my ways.  I need to adapt again.  I need to add weather watching as part of my gardening routine, not just to avoid the rain, but as autumn creeps on by there will be that inevitable first frost.  Although that seems a million miles from now.

So pretty - should brighten a dark day

So pretty – should brighten a dark day

So as the rain continues to fall, I need to plan what to do for when there is a break in the clouds.  I need to hang up the new hanging baskets I made.  The summer ones had completely given up the ghost and so I have made winter friendly ones with alyssum, viola, and primula’s .  A nice splash of colour for those dark days ahead.

Nearly ready - but will my bucket ever be the same again?

Nearly ready – but will my bucket ever be the same again?

I need to continue harvesting the pumpkins and get them stored away;  the chillies and peppers show no signs of letting up and harvesting is required regularly;  I have winter crop seedlings that aren’t all that far away from being planted in “big plants garden.”  The cooking apples and the quince are nearly ready so I’ll need to figure out what to do with them and the orchard has things that need doing to it.

There has got to be more uses for quince than jelly - there is only so much jelly a girl can eat!

There has got to be more uses for quince than jelly                                                           – there is only so much jelly a girl can eat!

I need to take down the tomatoes – although this, as always, is the last job on the list because while there are still tomatoes in the garden – no matter how manky, I can still kid myself that we are having an extended summer and winter is miles away! There is loads that needs to be done, and heaps that can be done.  But for now I will patiently wait for the rain to end and be grateful that the drought appears to finally have broken.

I'm sure that I can hold winter at bay - just so long as there are tomatoes in my garden.

I’m sure that I can hold winter at bay – just so long as there are tomatoes in my garden.

Come again soon – we are well into autumn and I’m OK with that – I can still garden, but I may just get wet!

Sarah the Gardener  : o )

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15 Comments on “Normal is actually good, even if it means you may get wet!

  1. Such beautiful peppers and pansies. Your other shots are good too, but those peppers, I don’t need tasteavision to imagine how delicious they are.

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    • Hi Lucinda. Fresh peppers are the best. I love how when you cut them they are as crunchy as a crisp Granny Smith apple. You don’t get that with store bought peppers!
      Cheers Sarah : o )

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  2. * Hi Sarah,

    * after reading your email, I came across this information, peppers / capsicums. I reckon it is the year of the capsicum, had lots this year and still going hard 🙂 most of my capsicums are long sweet, so won’t have those bumps…but there must be some truth in it.

    * FYI Dina

    *

    * Homesteading / Survivalism

    How To Identify The Use of A Bell Pepper…

    While terming this to be “gender” is not accurate, as bell pepper plants are hermaphroditic, this does appear to be a method used to identify which type of bell pepper is best for each purpose – either cooking, eating raw or for seed collection. There is a simple method for identifying which bell pepper has the traits you desire. Look on the underside of the pepper, the ones with four bumps are “female” and those with three bumps are “male”. The ones termed “female” peppers, or those with more bumps, contain more seeds and will be used largely for collection of seeds and replanting (hence “female”), but are also sweeter and better for eating raw. The ones with three or fewer bumps are better for cooking and contain fewer seeds. However, bell peppers are hermaphroditic, so any reference to gender is for a helpful memory aid only.

    The Pepper Garden: http://amzn.to/XeWhhv

    How To Identify The Use of A Bell Pepper… While terming this to be “gender” is not accurate, as bell pepper plants are hermaphroditic, this does appear to be a method used to identify which type of bell pepper is best for each purpose – either cooking, eating raw or for seed collection. There is a simple method for identifying which bell pepper has the traits you desire. Look on the underside of the pepper, the ones with four bumps are “female” and those with three bumps are “male”. The ones termed “female” peppers, or those with more bumps, contain more seeds and will be used largely for collection of seeds and replanting (hence “female”), but are also sweeter and better for eating raw. The ones with three or fewer bumps are better for cooking and contain fewer seeds. However, bell peppers are hermaphroditic, so any reference to gender is for a helpful memory aid only. The Pepper Garden: http://amzn.to/XeWhhv

    _____

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  3. Your squash are gorgeous! I love the way the whole world looks after a good, soft, soaking rain. Everything seems brighter.

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    • Hi Jenn. The rain is still very much a novelty and is not as regular as it should be yet, but each time it comes it is a blessing as the garden becomes that little bit greener.
      Cheers Sarah

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    • Hi there. I think autumn is my favourite time too. The weather is kinder as it cools down and the harvesting is so rewarding.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

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  4. Our jalapeno chillies are only just starting to ripen now. We had a couple of days of good solid rain but back to none now, however the temperatures are in the low 20C’s and that makes for gorgeous jumper wearing autumn days and walking the dog is a blissful pleasure. Monday is the end of the dreaded daylight savings (my most hated “savings” of all!) and my signal to start thinking about planting out our winter garden beds in earnest. We are almost to the stage of being able to start on the new massive fully enclosed vegetable garden that promises to deliver me from all evil (read possums and wallabies!). “The evil” managed to give me something to go rumplestiltskin about just about every single day but not for too much longer!
    I love the rain. I love being able to light Brunhilda and use some of our preserved food. We have been using the gorgeous rich tomato pasta sauce that we made with our tomatoes (they are still ripening ad hoc so the bushes are still in situ) and the flavour difference is out of this world. Steve’s amazing world famous chilli will never be the same 😉
    Those pumpkins are the stuff that my dreams are made of. I ADORE pumpkin…it’s my go-to starch of choice and it has so many uses that it is precious in our household. Lucky that Steve doesn’t like it so all the more for me! I love sharing gardening with someone living in very similar conditions to us here in Tassie. The mainland just doesn’t seem like the same country sometimes. No doubt you will get more frost than us…we get very little here and if we do get a frost, Launceston must be snowed under ;). I also love your honesty about gardening…no pretendsies here folks! Still looking for that book in the shops and am just about to request it from all of our local bookshops…got to do my bit to spread the love :). Have a great weekend Sarah and enjoy that gorgeous steady pitter patter of garden happiness 🙂

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    • Hi Fran. I have started to find myself hankering for soup. A big warm bowl of nourishment made from stuff of the garden. Nothing better!
      If your bookstore is playing hard to get, I think there are places online where you can get the book.
      But I still have chillies coming out of my ears so I have to figure out what to do with them. I may just lob them in the freezer whole.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

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      • Have you got a smoker? Have a go at making chipotle’s or dehydrate them (or slow oven dry) and make chilli flakes 🙂

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        • I’ve got enough to try all sorts of recipes! I was thinking of trying a chilli jelly along with making enough searingly hot chilli sauce to get us through until next year.
          Smoked sounds like a bit of fun – I’ll give it a whirl!
          Cheers S : o )

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          • Mum made me some chilli jam that was heaven! We slathered it on EVERYTHING and it made every single Asian stirfry (while the jars lasted) into something bright and magical. Gorgeousness in a jar and beautiful to look at so can’t wait to read about your exploits making your own personal variety in the blog 🙂

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