Today we <she> made 9 1/2 pint jars of blackberry jam from berries picked
on our land , and canned 4 quarts of home grown green beans .
And for dinner we had spaghetti made in part from our tomatoes <last year
. frozen> and seasoned in part with our cayenne peppers . In a little while
, I'll top the day off with some blackberry cobbler and ice cream .
So it is, I did nothing today. Dear wife is off to a religious retreat
for the weekend and the dawg and I laid around and read science fiction
novels, ate four meals of what we wanted, and watched the news a lot to
see how far down this country can go.
Oh yeah, I did turn the soaker hoses on the vegetable gardens for an
hour and even hand watered the fig and kumquat trees. I guess that
qualifies as work. I think I will have a small bowl of Blue Bell
Southern Blackberry Cobbler ice cream in celebration.
I do envy the home grown blackberries, our land is so small we have to
go pick at a berry farm and then pay for the privilege. And I am waiting
in anticipation for the Hopi Red Limas to make enough beans that I can
can in the pressure canner.
Sounds like you had an enjoyable day ! I never did get that cobbler , I
was so full of spaghetti I just couldn't . Today will be a light day for me
, I'll probably go out and play with my toys in the machine shop . Got a
couple of small projects in mind , like a GPS mount bracket for the bike . I
never thought that'd happen , I like paper maps but the machine is so handy
I usually check the garden when I feed the chickens , noticed today that
we have li'l okras and the roma tomatoes are starting to ripen . BTW , I'm
not sure how to tell when the corn is ready to pick , I haven't grown any
before since I'm the only one that eats it - she's allergic . Some ears have
tassels that are turning brown , but they don't really look big enough yet .
On the land situation , we have 12 acres , but it's mostly all covered
with trees except a patch about the size of an average building lot <and the
powerline easements , but I can't cultivat there> . I did clear an area for
the orchard too - if my garden is going to get any bigger <currently abt
1000sf> I'll have to cut some more trees down .
Many years ago, I made 5 gallons of blackberry wine from blackberries
that a friend had picked at his farm. I split it with him.
I had quit making wine but 20 years later found a bottle lost in a
basement cabinet. Color was practically gone and was not intense in the
beginning as I diluted with sugar other than that from the pure
blackberries but wine was great, even after 20 years.
Back in the early sixties I had put up several gallons of dewberry wine,
had a bumper crop that year. As you did I found a jug of that wine when
we were moving house in 1976. When we were settled in the new home we
had a taste of the old wine, it was so good we drank it all. There's
some magic in uncovering something you made years ago and it is still
good or even better.
We have the makings for a dozen blackberry cobblers in the freezer.
Picked at a U-pick-em farm, very large berries. Froze them on a bun pan
and then put them into vacuum bags and stashed in the freezer for future
Tomorrow we go to another U-pick-em farm to pick fifteen lbs of figs to
make fig jam with. We miss our huge fig tree in the old place as our new
one has, so far this season, given us less than a quart of figs. Of
course the tree is only about four feet tall and not very big. We have
to net it when the fruit comes on as the dang blasted mockingbirds peck
Oh , there WILL be wine ! Our plants are loaded , I've been picking as they
ripen . I expect a big surge next week , we should end up with 2-3 gallons
minimum frozen for later use . I gotta replace a lot of my winemaking stuff
, gave most all of it away 30 yrs ago when we moved east from Utahahaha .
I'm not sure we'll have room for all the produce from the garden plus all
the wild fruit <the muscadines are loaded too> in the freezer . And I have
no idea where we'll store 'em if the potatoes bear like I suspect they will
. I might actually have this growin' thing working !
On Sunday, July 13, 2014 9:06:41 PM UTC-4, Terry Coombs wrote:
When you have those years of abundance be sure to preserve as much as possi
ble. There will be years without. Around here the abundance seems to be gen
era specific. 3 years ago the chile pepper crop was outstanding & I made lo
ads of sweet, hot pepper relish. The last 2 years have been almost 0 crop.
This year looks good, thank goodness I'm almost out of relish.
At the time, I had 2 peach trees and deluged with them made wine. I
quit when the trees died and the area got shaded in. I've still got my
equipment in an attic. The work in making blackberry wine is in the
Both muscadine and possum grapes make excellent wine Terry. They also
make very good jelly. I miss being close to a friend with lots of fruit
trees and vines that he never used. Gifted him with jars and jars of
good stuff for the picking rights.
Certainly sounds like you've got it wired.
Last year we got tomatoes , zucchini , and jalapenos abundantly enough to
preserve some . Looks like this is the year of the fruit ... plus whatever
we get from the garden .
High hopes , I got hiiiIIiiiiiiiiIIIgh hopes ...
Exactly , and I'm gonna be picking them either way . It's going to be a
couple more years , but when the orchard starts producing ... apples , pears
, peaches , and cherries all make dandy wine . Just got a number from my
friend and neighbor Randy for a wine/beer supply store they use . The only
thing that's going to be hard/expensive is the glassware - 5 gal carboys are
hard to find and often overpriced . I may need to make a run to a bigger
city <Little Rock or Memphis> for wine bottles etc .
I see the carboys are listing for about $30. Would take a visit to hot
attic in garage to see what I have but maybe 4-6. Still have 2 20 gal
primary plastic garbage type primaries and I keep them full of water in
case of power or well failure for flushing toilets. Have a bag of corks
and old corker and wonder if only corks available today are the
synthetic ones being used. We had a store here called Wine Hobby which
is since gone but great source of supplies like this as well as yeasts
and concentrates. I also made home brewed beer which was fantastic but
fattening so I quit making it. Today, I might consider saving
disposable 2 liter soda bottles and smaller water bottles for bottling
both beer and wine.
One of my kids bought me a beer kit for Christmas a couple of years that
made 2 gallons of so so beer and cost ~$50. Refill supplies were
expensive. Ridiculous. To me, a hobby should be fun and save you money.
I used some five-gallon plastic carboys for years with no problems. Put
the wine up in one-gallon vinegar jugs, glass back then but sterile
plastic later. Made no difference in the taste. I put up lots of pickles
for us and the 21 descendants we have so always have vinegar jugs.
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