July 15, 2009

Exciting Finds in the Garden

Look what we're beginning to find in the garden - Ripe Iowa Tomatoes!! These little cherry tomatoes, and...

...this big beauty, an Italian Heirloom. It's not an Italian in the plum tomato category, but simply called Italian. We ate this baby a few days after I took the picture, and it was just as mind blowing as the first tomato of the season should be. I have a picture in the sidebar of this blog that has the caption - "There's just something about an Iowa tomato." - and people, people, it's true. They say it's the dirt here. I can remember craving them as a kid and eating them at my grandmothers' homes until my mouth was practically raw. In recent years, my dear aunt in southwestern Iowa, packed a shoebox full of their garden tomatoes for me, and sent them on the plane with my husband when he came back to Maine from a job interview in Iowa. Fellow Iowans understand the addiction for sure! When they ripen in full force, you can't stop yourself from eating them with all three meals - or just give in and make that your meal! Maybe you wrap a little bread and butter around them, or maybe you just slice a pile on your plate and use your fork to stab anyone who comes near and tries to swipe a bite - get your own!! One of the very best parts of summer without a doubt.

We also found that we had indeed grown potatoes successfully! We indulged in a few new potatoes, but decided to leave the rest for a bit longer. These are the heirloom variety "German Butterball".

And now for the prizewinning find in another garden...
Whoo, hoo!!! Our Maine gardening friends keep bees, and have been having some interesting adventures with them this summer. Look what was waiting for them among the snow peas one morning! You can see a bit of the branch that the bees actually attached to, and that was what our friends picked up and moved to try and relocate them to a new hive. Apparently some of them were back in the same garden spot the next day, so it took some doing for the bees to get the idea. I think keeping bees is beyond our reach, since one of the multiple weird things about me, is how creeped out I get at "clusters" of anything. And DH would have to admit that he is a bit of a girl when it comes to stinging, flying critters! We'd be useless as beekeepers. But, we do know from lovely experience that our friends' honey is primo and worth the work! And another thing - look at those gorgeous snow peas and vines! I am thoroughly jealous since our snow peas were total junk this year! But I absolutely will not complain for long since a recent update from the Mainers tells us that because of all the rainy, weird weather there this year, lots of people have lost their entire gardens. Very sad. So, enjoy whatever is exciting in your garden and be grateful!


  1. holy tomato! those are some good looking tomatoes. reading your blod has made me really want to get into gardening. the only gardening we have done is that one corn growing on the one side of the house by accident. it's not eatable either.

  2. Great swarm photo. Looks like a bee-keepers dream if they came from someplace other than his own hives, which of course, they probably didn't.