It's been an eventful few days here at Poppy Corners, as I'm able to harvest tomatoes and peppers every few days. The tomatoes go on the piano (why the piano? I'm not really sure, except it's out of the way and any flat surface in this house gets used somehow) to ripen, the sweet peppers get roasted and put in the freezer, and I've been drying the hot peppers. My experiment in drying outside worked, until the weather changed and the sun got lower in the sky. So now I put them on a baking rack/cookie sheet and in a 175 degree oven, and check frequently. When they have zero moisture left, they can be stored. Some of them take half a day, some two days.
The green ones aren't so pretty dried, but the red ones go translucent and look beautiful. Those long ones are Maule's Red Hot, the short green ones are Jalepeno, and the round ones are Calabrese. Once dry, they go in a mason jar to add to my stockpile of dried herbs, to which I'm regularly adding.
I've also been doing my fair share of digging, as I had a wheelbarrow full of native plants to get in the ground before the next rain, and about 50 native bulbs.
I planted Cream Cups, Blue Witch, Silk Tassel, Virgin's Bower (a native clematis), Soaproot, Dutchman's Pipevine, Monardella, and Checkerbloom. All of these went into the Woodland Garden, except the Silk Tassel, which I planted in the part of the asparagus bed that died. Most of these plants will get zero irrigation after the winter rains. The native bulbs won't either, they went in a dry spot in the Woodland Garden, and the daffodils and alliums went where they'll get some supplemental water.
I'm not a huge fan of bulbs, but daffodils are always so cheering, and I do love the native bulbs, with their creative names.
I've noticed large amounts of Gulf Fritillary butterflies in the garden. They seem to drink nectar from all the usual suspects, but they are especially curious about the Passion Vines (totally non-native) that I planted this past spring. They flit around them, lighting on the leaves and opening and closing their wings. I haven't seen any eggs yet, but I think they must be checking them out for this purpose.
They aren't easy to get a picture of, as they are so fast to fly!!!
Kale, Chard, Broccoli, Carrots, Radishes, Peas, and Cabbages are all coming up nicely. The garlic and onions have a great head start. I've left the tomatoes and peppers in and intend to keep them going until the first frost. The baking pumpkins are coming along and might be ready to use for Thanksgiving pie (I had to buy some for carving, drat).
What's happening in your garden?