I say tomatoes

Last week when I took the above film shot the tomatoes were just beginning to ripen. Then last night M. brought in this haul, below. I see lots of tomato, mozzarella, basil with balsamic vinegar in the near future. 

The cucumbers are also prolific, but I think they're about to slow down. Yet the squash and zucchini are producing like gangbusters so I'm looking for recipes to use them up. There's a recipe variation for zucchini muffins in a Moosewood cookbook I want to try.  And the other night I made this tomato zucchini tart of Rachel's, which is so good. You've got to try it. And twice (to use the cucumbers and tomatoes) I've whipped up a summer salad from the recent issue of Vegetarian Times which has a garlic and basil dressing poured over freshly chopped red onions, cucumber, and tomatoes. It's simple, cool and flavorful, just right for these hot humid days.

Do you have a favorite tomato, cucumber or squash recipe?

in the garden

We awoke early and were in the garden by 7am pulling up the waning sugar snaps. After M. went to work I weeded the area so we can finally plant our okra. While pecking away at the dirt with my weeder tool, I uncovered a clan of the tiniest baby snails I'd ever seen. They weren't even 1/8 in. big! Some were 1/16 in. I'd say.  Their transparent shells are amazing. So of course I had to get the camera and decided to catch the zucchini bloom before it closed. And can you see the bumble bee on the poppy blooms and the honey bee flying away? It's not easy to catch those guys with a manual focus lens.

Last night we ate our first cucumber of the season and made a fritatta recipe recommended by Shari, with kale, thyme, farm eggs, and cheddar.  Very good.  I just gobbled up the leftovers for breakfast.

Have a nice weekend!

garden notes

[spiderwebs in this morning light : 
the one above is tiny, about 3 in. wide; the one below is about 2 ft. wide]

Yesterday morning I worked for several hours weeding in the garden, and enjoyed popping a sun warmed strawberry in my mouth from time to time. While weeding I spotted a baby gartner snake cureld under some leaves and it darted it's tongue at me before sliding away.  M. picked our first sugar snaps last night. This morning I plan to finally get a few more seedlings in the ground, thai basil, pesto basil and a little trio basil.  

Did you hear this story about Emily Dickinson?  In addition to the article, I also like her white cotton gardening dress, seen in the last image of the slideshow.

And Shari's garden posts are always a fave.

Tomorrow begins demo time around here. Our dumpster was dropped off at 7am this morning.  Woohoo!

Have a nice long weekend!

more flowery

Spring is popping up.  Even the "weeds" are interesting up close.  We worked allll weekend long, taking advantage of the great weather.  I think somehow our garden gets bigger with each passing year.   We're up to 1600 sq. ft., which I don't know if that's a lot but it sure seems like it right now as we're digging, weeding, transplanting, pruning, raking, sowing seeds, and finally falling into bed at night dog-tired. 

I'll be back later, my tongue is still hanging out.

Hope you had a nice weekend,


With the super springy weather this week we've been gardening in the evenings after work. Monday night M. tilled new soil for relocating the strawberry plants and I transplanted our hollyhocks. While working I felt really motivated or excited to garden, to labor, to dig with a shovel. (I know, shocker, right?!) Perhaps it's because the winter was so drearily looong or because the spring weather is wooing me, I'm not sure. But for that moment it was a happy little realization.
Also planted were liatris spicata and oxalis and on the to-do list are the ranunculus, anemone, and dahlia bulbs. Did I mention I've declared this the season of flowers? Our flower garden was so spare last year compared to our veggies, that I really missed them.
Current flower report: The daffodils are at the peak (have you noticed how fresh daffodils smell?), forsythia began blooming Tuesday, the poppy seeds are sprouting, surprise lily leaves are getting tall, echinacea leaves are poking up and the daisies have spread like gangbusters from last year.

This flower wallpaper is pretty and it's interesting the way change is integrated into the design of the space. Via all the mountains.

The paintings of Bella Foster have an Alice Neel quality about them that I like.

Are you planting flowers this season?