Saturday, October 20, 2012

My pathetic garden and wonderful salsa

After 10 years of gardening, I had the worst garden ever this year. I heard similar complaints from other gardeners about the weather being too dry. I watered several times a week, but my husband says I should've watered every day. Maybe he had a point. I planted tomatoes promptly on May 15, yet most of my plants didn't yield a ripe tomato at all. Some had a handful of red tomatoes going into October, but all were small & many had blossom end rot. I've never had issues with tomatoes growing in the past, certainly not with them never ripening going into October! Unfortunately I only know 1 person who likes eating green tomatoes, so everything went to waste. It was so sad to see all the heirloom tomatoes I started from seed wither away.

I managed to can nearly 50 pints of salsa from the generosity of other gardeners who had an abundance of tomatoes though. Perhaps they watered every day? The first batch of salsa I made included 1 Roma tomato from my garden. It wasn't completely ripened, but I felt I needed to contribute something to the salsa!

Many of my Romas were tiny looking more like cherry tomatoes! In fact, I think some of my cherry tomatoes were larger than the Romas!

Most of my green peppers were small as well, although they produced an abundance of peppers compared to years past when I may have had 1 pepper per plant. a few peppers were miniscule in size... my husband lovingly referred to them as Pepper Poppers. I threw them loose into a batch of stuffed peppers, so they didn't go to waste.

The salsa recipe I make came from my husband's cousin. It's the best salsa recipe I've ever eaten. In fact, I never liked salsa until I tried hers!! I may have tried 4 salsa recipes in the past, but most were fresh style salsas. This recipe has tomato sauce & paste in it, so it's more like a store bought variety, but so much better. I always send the recipe card with my canning jar label purchases through my etsy shop & I've had many customers try the recipe & send rave reviews about it. If anyone wants the recipe, I would be happy to share! Just let me know in the comments section!

One thing I never have issues growing is carrots... although I had to replant a few rows this year due to poor germination. I tried a colored mix this year. While they all look very pretty, they aren't the tastiest of carrots. Not so sweet and kinda ear-waxy :D

My puny Roma tomato compared to a full size Roma tomato.
I swear this is an actual Roma & NOT a cherry tomato!!
My tiny pepper poppers compared to average sized peppers from my father-in-law 
tasty salsa made with tomatoes from every one else's gardens.
Why do I even bother gardening when I can get free produce from others?
Pretty carrots, but not very tasty

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