Sunday, January 27, 2013

Tomatoes in Winter

A cold, overcast Sunday is a great time to make spaghetti sauce. It's also a great time to clean out the freezer a bit by using up some of the frozen tomatoes from last summer. Farmer MacGregor makes great sauce. Not typical Italian sauce. No. This recipe comes from his Hungarian grandmama. And it's my favorite. I have never found an Italian sauce that I like better than this.

The sauce cooked for a few hours then I lit the BBQ mesquite to cook some steaks and garlic bread. Delicious with a green salad. Farmer MacGregor cheated and bought lettuce at the grocery store rather than pick from the garden. It was good just the same.

I'm glad I discovered freezing tomatoes. I simply wash and dry ripe tomatoes and place them in a freezer bag. When you're ready to use them, fill the bag with warm water to defrost a little. With a sharp knife, remove the core and skin. VoilĂ ! Use the summer beauties as you would canned tomatoes.

There is a secondary use for frozen tomatoes. Should you need, these would knock someone out if you beaned them with a sack of frozen 'maters. They are like cue balls.

This summer, I will only be growing tomatoes in containers as I am trying to eradicate the raised beds of nematodes.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Amaryllis Success!

The Amaryllis this season started by coming out of the box on December 26, 2012, as a contorted specimen (See 1st photo.). A stake was used to gently right the wrong; but by day #2 the stem was well on its way to growing strong and upright. The stake was removed.

By day #23 (January 17, 2013), the bulb was in full bloom (See 2nd photo.). Three flowers on one stem remain bright in the kitchen window today. This seems to be the only successful Amaryllis grown from several other Christmas gift bulbs purchased by my brother.

The image on the box for Minerva looks more red than what I have (See 3rd photo.). I like this variety and hope to be successful in having it multiply and bloom in years to come.

If you've had success with Amaryllis, please share your suggestions.

PS - I had to compose this post using the Blogger app (while watching football) because Blogger is not allowing me the option of adding photos from my computer. Turds.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Dormant Spray #1

All the deciduous trees were given the 1st application of dormant oil spray after each had a light pruning. Thinning out areas where necessary, removing crossing branches, and removing any dead or unhealthy branches is the criteria for this pruning. Removing too much will reduce fruit production in a few months. Removing too little could mean whimpy fruit. It's an art and I'm still finger painting.

Ideally, 3 applications will be made before the blooms break. That's not likely because the dormant season arrived so late.

If you're considering dormant spray, make sure to cover items you don't want sprayed. The copper will turn everything it touches blue-green.

This post was composed using a Blogger app.