Hi y’all, Lori here once again from McDowell County! It’s hard to believe it’s September already. Where did the summer go?

This season has been a test of patience to be sure. We had to replant so many times thanks to the rain and awful heat, that we were afraid we were just going to end up with sprout soup! I thought that when I got the harvest numbers from our participants that we would have only had 3 tomatoes and a pepper or two. I am proud to announce that that isn’t the case. We grew about 3000 pounds of food! It may not seem like much to some, but to us and our participants it was amazing considering the rough start. Remember the one that had her garden mowed down by a “helpful” neighbor, and the one that the wind took out her corn and had some of her stuff wash away with the rain? They never gave up, and neither did we at the center. We had pitiful results with cucumbers and squashes, but we replanted and they seem to be doing pretty good now. Our second planting of beets was great. We harvest a bushel one day and have many more growing still.

Bushel of beets

Bushel of beets

We had a lot of tomatoes, and hot peppers too. We turned the beets into pickled beets, some of the tomatoes and peppers into love apple jelly, and a lot of the peppers into pepper butter that will melt your face off. We have saved hundreds if not thousands of bean seeds, some heirloom and some not. We are happy to share.

We finally got cabbage!! YAY us. We are going to try our hand at making sauerkraut, and chow chow. I’m not sure how people coming to the center will like the kraut smell during the fermenting process, but I think they will be alright.

Since the weather has gotten a little cooler, things seem to be growing better. We all have things greening back up and flowering that we thought were done for. Hopefully the plants will produce before winter hits. Maybe umbrellas and tiny fans will help if it gets too hot next season.

I am really looking forward to seeing what the rest of the season brings.

Until next time, Happy Harvesting!