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My garden is in full production

It's a wonderful time of year when you have a vegetable garden. I have so much good food in the refrigerator, it’s hard to decide what to eat next.

The first vegetable in my garden that was ready to eat was zucchini. I’ve made Potato Zucchini and Goat Cheese Au Gratin several times. When my daughter was visiting, she saw the recipe on the refrigerator and asked to try it. She liked it, and so did my 13-year-old granddaughter, although my granddaughter, a potato lover, did pick out some of the zucchini.

Now, I’m getting lots of cucumbers. Too bad my grandchildren went home to Madrid. They eat about two cucumbers a day each. I had to give some away to the workers who are repairing my fence.

My green beans were spectacular. I had three good-sized servings. I might get another small one. I made the first batch when my daughter was here. In the others, I’ve added bacon like my mom used to do.

Tomatoes are always a big question in the Seattle area. We still have about a month of good weather, so maybe I won’t be left with dozens of green tomatoes like happens most years. I’ve had two bacon and tomato sandwiches so far and I’ll enjoy another one when I finish writing this article.

I started growing cherry tomatoes due to the green tomato problem. These roma tomatoes are coming along nicely.

This year, I decided to grow collards instead of kale. Although collards are tougher and you can’t make chips out of them, I like to rotate my food to prevent allergies. Also, I’ve grown kale for several years in a row, and although I planted it in different spots, a staff member at the co-op garden center said I might be getting leaf mites because I haven’t rotated the vegetables in my garden enough. I found that cooking collards with fatty meat works. See “How to Cook Collards” for the recipe I developed.

I always grow Swiss chard. This year I planted it beside my raised bed garden, a rotation issue, so it didn’t get as big. I’ll start eating it after most of the collards are gone.

I found a new eggplant recipe. I tried my mom’s method last year, dip in egg and cracker crumbs then fry, but they were greasy. I grow a few eggplants because they’re pretty.

I always grow a few peppers. Hopefully, these aren’t hot peppers like I bought by mistake a couple of times. Again, they’re pretty.

I have some good-looking parsley. When my daughter and grandkids were here, I put some on their plates for decorations. It received mixed reviews. I need to use it more because it’s good for your health.

My raspberries have come and gone. I didn’t have many this year, unlike last year when I froze more than a dozen pints. I love raspberries. Nothing beats going out to the raspberry patch and eating them off the vine. But, my daughter discovered a blackberry patch when she was here. I made a blackberry pie the evening before they went back home. Read about our adventures picking blackberries in “Nothing Beats Homemade Pie.” I picked a panful Friday evening and will pick more today.

I hope you’re able to have a garden. It’s wonderful to eat organic vegetables daily this time of year. Even using pots on the patio, you can raise a lot of vegetables.

Copyright 2017, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist


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