June 26, 2007

Better Late than Never

I haven't watered my salsa garden in around a week. I was away at work for the weekend and came home with a cold, so I was not able to tend to my plants as I would have liked to. Thank goodness that chiles thrive on neglect! I was out with my water wand this afternoon and was astounded to see all the changes that have happened in my garden while I was away. Better late than never when it comes to water.

There were many chile pods to be seen. Lots of cherry bombs, just turning red. Kung Pao, most of which are a bright red and ready for harvest. Carmen Hybrid, a New Mexico style chile that I have not tried before. They are large and dark grassy green. The two fresno plants are covered in both green and red chiles, ready to be harvested. Tiny scotch bonnets forming on the tree like plant, still green and far from their final size. Chocolate Habaneros are also tiny and green.

I am excited by the possible harvest of this week, but I'm not sure what I'm going to use all this bounty in. I will have to start forming recipes for next week....

June 08, 2007

Summertime Weeding

I've been neglecting my salsa garden other than making sure that the plants are getting regular waterings either by hand or via my soaker hose system due to my heavy work schedule. I realized that the weeds in the gravel path were getting out of hand and that my beds had a few volunteer weeds among the chile plants. So I spent a good 30 minutes weeding the paths and my beds. I also did a little maintenance on the chiles. I broke off dead stems, removed dried up spent chiles and coaxed stems back inside of the metal cages that surround each plant. The plants are looking quite healthy and happy in my little side yard salsa garden.

Most of my overwintered chiles have pods that will be turning ripe in the next week or two. The new transplants are still growing and only a few have a pod or two on them. I'm delighted to report that my overwintered cherry bomb chile has recovered from its transplant shock and not only is sporting new leaf growth, but is starting to produce new pods! I may yet have an appetizer tray of stuffed cherry bombs this fall. On the flip side, the blushing beauty overwintered pepper plant has definitely failed. I removed the dried up stem and the cage as I was weeding.

The tomatoes are shooting up like rockets and I think that I have spied my first semi-ripe tomato deep within the leaves. So far, the larger cages are containing the tomatoes and keeping the fruit from touching the soil where insects might damage them. I'm looking forward to making my first crockpot full of homemade spaghetti sauce this summer.