Joyknits!

Knitting, spinning, pets, food and other thoughts


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Not just beans …

there are other things growing here too, like the Disco Belle hibiscus hibiscusand cucumbers, which are just starting to come in. These are a pickling variety, but they’re also very good to snack on πŸ˜‰ cukesBut there are plenty of beans – I’ve already put some in the freezer to enjoy next winter, and I fixed some of the little French fillet beans (Calima) with shallots, diced tomato, toasted pine nuts and fresh herbs (thyme, parsley & basil) the other night – yum! These beans are producing very well and are definitely on my plant-again list. beans


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Meanwhile …

There’s another shawl pattern, Ripples on the Shore, up on Ravelry. The sample used Crazy Zauberball; I had to keep going just to see what the colors were going to do next πŸ˜‰

Ripples on the Shore

Ripples on the Shore

These 2 geraniums were very small when I got them – they’re starting to fill the larger pots quite nicely! geraniums

The beans have really taken off; I picked the first ones on Wednesday, then even more yesterday, and we had the first ones (just plain with a little salt & butter – yum!!!) for dinner last night. At the rate they’re going, I’ll be putting lots in the freezer, which will be lovely next winter! I’m still waiting for the wax beans to be ready, but some are starting to show color.bean rows

No ripe tomatoes yet, but there are quite a few green ones out there. I imagine the trick will be to get them before the squirrels do. tomatoesThe now huge volunteer squash plant in the compost looks like it’s likely to be a butternut, so it will be a while before any of them are ripe, but it’s really spreading … squashand I thought the dill almost looked like little yellow bursts of fireworks πŸ™‚ dill


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KIPing, gardening and catching up

I was actually KIPing* at the end of the appropriate week for once. Potosi (originally Mine au Breton) celebrated the 250th anniversary of its founding with a big parade, pageant and all sorts of activities, including heritage crafters. We were pretty lucky with our location on the porch of the courthouse, which provided shade as well as shelter from rain – we needed both! I ended up working on a pair of mittens, which is mostly finished, but I suppose I really should go back and finish the 2nd thumb πŸ˜‰knittingThe following weekend was TNNA, which is always both hectic and interesting with all the new yarns to pet. All in all, a good trip (though I’m still catching up with details from it), and I was lucky to leave ahead of the later weather delays!

The garden is coming along nicely, and we have actual teeny-tiny beans on 3 of the 4 varieties I planted; the other variety is blooming, just no beans yet. If they all do well, we could have beans like all the bad zucchini jokes πŸ˜‰beansThe Italian Roma beans are labeled as bush beans, but the more they grow, the more I think they’re not bush, so I recycled an old gate as a trellis for them, just in case.

Supposed-to-be-bush beans

Supposed-to-be-bush beans

And more … I can hardly wait for the fresh veggies πŸ˜›

Sweet Italian peppers

Sweet Italian peppers

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Volunteer tomato plants and mystery squash/melon in the old compost pile

Volunteer tomato plants and mystery squash/melon in the old compost pile

Salvia by the deck

Salvia by the deck

*Knitting In Public


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Yarn, garden and other bits

I received some interesting yarns to doodle with,

yarn

Seeds are coming up in the garden …bean row

Roma Italian beans.

Roma Italian beans.

Squash.

Squash.

and the planters are looking good planters

In a moment of possible insanity, I said I’d participate in the 250th anniversary celebration for our county seat, which meant digging out a craft show wardrobe that hasn’t been used in forever. We won’t discuss the fact that some alterations are needed, but if I do say so, I’m still rather proud of some of the trim details I did so many years ago!

Craft show clothes

Craft show clothes

Apron pocket detail.

Apron pocket detail.

Apron lace

Apron lace (yes, it needs to be ironed)


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Less & more.

There’s a lot less of our walnut tree today than there was yesterday, but we’re hoping this will improve its chances of survival. The construction project certainly didn’t help, and then getting hit with such a hot, dry summer made it even worse.

Walnut tree: Before.

The tree guy was here bright and early this morning:

He trimmed it back to live wood, plus he took a fallen branch off the deck roof for us. Now we water and hope:

Walnut tree: After.

Things are much cheerier in the garden. Most of the tomatoes have set, one is starting to turn color, new bean plants are coming up (replanted after rabbit-proofing the fence!), and there are a few cucumbers and zucchini in the wings.

Brandywine tomato.

Cucumber

Round zucchini

And for a spot of color, the native tall bellflower – I love the color!

Tall bellflower.


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Garden’s end (for now)

Since the weather folks kept issuing frost warnings for our area (and freeze warnings not that much farther north of us) I decided to pick everything instead of dealing with covering it again. As you may guess, there was no frost way up here on the hill, even though other areas around us did get some. So apart from sone earlier peppers, yellow pear (salad) tomatoes and a couple of larger tomatoes from the planter, this is what we got from the part of the garden I got planted this year.

The tomatoes are all Brandywine (red and yellow, which I will definitely grow again), the larger sweet peppers are Jimmy Nardello, and the little dish is de Arbol chilis of as yet unknown hotness. While it’s not a large yield, considering how late I got the plants into the ground, I’m happy to have gotten this much. As they say, next year … πŸ˜‰

Some of the tomatoes are showing enough color I think they’ll ripen, but I still want to make a batch of relish with some of the green ones and the peppers. Meanwhile, I made pepper jelly yesterday. For some reason, my math skills completely deserted me, and I came up 4 jars short of having enough for all the jelly, so the 4 jars on the right (clean, but not sterilized or processed) are in the fridgeΒ  (sigh …)

Pepper jelly - the whole batch.

Along with the frost warnings we got cooler weather, perfect for making a big pan of lasagna. We either need to have more company, or put some in the freezer for later – it freezes well.

Ready to go in the oven.

Yum!

Beautiful clouds today.


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More signs of fall

There was some frost in the area over the weekend. Since our tomatoes got a late start, and currently have quite a few nice green ones, I wanted to try to save them. Fortunately there’s an assortment of old sheets, quilts and a moving pad that gets pressed into service at time like this — it’s even got a couple of buckets of water in there!

Early Arkansas greenhouse ;o)

Some nice ones.

If it looks like it’s going to turn too cold, there’s always pickle relish!

The Virginia creeper is turning gorgeous shades of red – I went over to look at the vine that’s growing on the tree near the deck and found a little more than expected. I’ve no idea what kind of caterpillar it is, but it’s at least as big as a large tomato hornworm.

Side view.

Still lots of yellow around – I love these!