Ah yes, my first harvest this summer... and what do I see?? HOLES! And what bugs are inside? Well, I don't know for sure actually what made the holes, but they were filled with fire ants! Och! I hate fire ants!
Its the only of God's creatures I truly allow myself to 'let go and hate.' YUP--hate.
Anyhoo--I picked the first two Japanese eggplants, soaked them in water with a tad of vinegar, as I do with all my fresh produce, then I rinsed them nicely and cut off the damaged parts. I guess there may still be enough to do something with... I may make an eggplant dip with them.. doing a bit of recipe shuffling as I head toward fully implementing the DASH diet for my blood pressure.
I'm really perturbed cuz there were a few days I didn't inspect the garden well enough and look! look what they did!
The funny thing is there are just tons, and tons of tiny yellow squashes and tomatoes out there, I was so concerned about them that I didn't concentrate attention on the poor lonely only eggplant. :( OOOH I'm mad!
Well, this morning I took a nice 40 minute walk in the neighborhood for the 3rd time this week, and that is good. I get out early when I can so I don't get overheated. We had an amazingly nice windy storm last night with lots of rain--yeah! it cooled us down just slightly--but we likely will be back up to 90 this afternoon. Another favor it did us is drop lots of tree parts which I swept up and used as free mulch already.
Free excercise and free mulch--yippee.
This afternoon I want to head back over that lovely health food store--but not so much for pricey produce. I'm looking for whole grain flours. I sold my old grain grinder a while ago since I really was not using it. Well I'm back to making bread again--but now with my thrift store breadmaker instead of big batches. We don't need that much, and I don't need to be using the big oven in summer anyhow--cuz its plenty hot enough here without that. Soooo I need a place to buy small bags of whole grains--already ground for breadmaking. You can't get that at the Aldi that's for sure. Although if you want white flour--nobody is cheaper than them. I do use that for french and italian bread--and challah. :) (challah's a tad fattening though, so its best reserved for occassional use)
Rose of Sharon is blooming! Its up behind the big holly hedge on my north neighbor's side. He gave me a few starts which I planted near the fence on the south side. Right now it is blooming big pink flowers, I've heard there are several colors coming!
I filled up a big clear plastic container with perlite and vermiculite and I have now 'planted' it full of small shrub cuttings. So far I have in there a yellow cypress shrub, forsythia, 2 types of holly, a spirea, and something yellow and varigated--the name escapes me.. eu_? I am hoping to start several containers of cuttings and once they root transfer to them pots of compost and grow them on--probably in the unused bed behind my garage. When they are big I want to hold a one day plant/rummage sale or else perhaps sell them on Craigslist. Just looking to see how that will go--is it a little side enterprise I can do or no? We shall see.
I'll keep some too, and give some away of course. :)
On my Dash Diet project I filled up a 1/2 gallon mason jar with water and a little sprinkle of True Lemon to 'perk it up'. I put that in the fridge for myself. I need to try to drink 8 glasses of water per day. I figure that's about 1/2 a gallon, so if I fill the bottle each morning and empty it by bedtime--I'm good. :) Of course when I'm at work I'll have to take plastic bottles.
I am trying to figure out a simple way to keep track of the Dash diet--it has so much to it-- its not just counting calories its making sure you get the right amounts of each food. Sooooo I think I may make another one of those little checkbook style notebooks to keep track of what I eat and maybe my exercise and my blood pressure readings. I'm supposed to be monitoring my pressure at home. I have a monitor--but I'll be honest--until I found out my heart had some minor damage to it--I barely ever checked my pressure at home. :( I just don't enjoy that sort of thing--but one must do what one must do.
So-- I am looking to find an easy way to track it all that is portable like my little pricebook. (find the post under the pricebook label)
As for my poor eggplants--there are plenty more on the plant that are fine right now. These two were near the bottom. I sprinkled sevin dust about for the ants this morning and anyplace else I saw crop damage. Gardening is hard hot work--I know--there are plenty of folks with opinions about this--but I'm still semi-organic and I plan to eat more of my crop than I give to the bugs. I do try to minmize it all and use organic choices to some extent--but when push comes to shove --I shove back.