About gDonna
The photo is my son and myself. Now days you can get a photo made to look old like this one. This photo was taken when this was the new look.

Harry S Truman was president when I was born and world war II had ended. I grew up in a time when lunch was put in a brown paper bag and a sandwich was wrapped with wax paper. There was no such thing as pantyhose, we wore stockings that attached to the rubbery clippy things that attached to the girdle. Convenience stores were not common and when we took a trip we packed a picnic basket because many places did not have fast food. Highways had places to pull over and stop, some with picnic tables. Read more ....

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The Shift of August

August 19, 2022

Where we live here in the United States, it is still very hot during the month of August but by the middle of August there are some notable changes, the summer vegetables are at harvest or have already harvested.  There is heavy foliage on the trees, the weeds have taken over because it has been too hot to go out and there is the feeling that a change will be coming.

For me it is more in the mind, it is like a battle is ending, the battle of surviving the summer heat.  My brain has shifted and given me a dose of energy to plant those late summer and early fall seeds. This time when they get close to harvest the cooling is beginning if not already begun.  

So planting again is what I have done.  Here at our home we try to use our little plot of soil the best we can.  We use tanks and pots in areas that we can find a small area of where the sun shines through. 

Some of our trees that cause this shade are pecan trees or fruit trees so they give us food as well so we try and figure it out as we go and as they grow. 

It seems more important than ever to get this right. 

We had a poor harvest for spring and summer crops so it has given me a lot of time to think out how I will do it this time around.

The photo above is our new radish garden.  I found a variety pack of heirloom radishes and I planted them in rows.  I am excited about our radish garden because as old as I am still learning and I am just learning the many varieties of radishes and the many ways of cooking them.  

Here in the area that we live radishes are mostly known for eating raw or with salads and normally the red hot spicy radish. I have never been fond of that radish but when we decided to grow the Diakon radish last year and leaned about cooking radishes this opened up a whole new experience for us. The only other radish I have planted in our garden is the icicle radish and the French Breakfast so this little garden is going to be exciting. :)

We cleared out the tanks and put wire down to help deter critters from digging in our tanks.  It worked out nicely because it gave us a grid for planting. 

We cleared a small bed where we grew tomatoes and this is one of the plots now in use for the late summer / fall garden. 

We added three tanks this year, these are open in the bottom so they are more of a ring.  This is an area we found has sunshine a good part of the day so we wanted to add this spot for a new growing area. 

This is our neighbors cat and his name is Irish.  He loves our backyard and explores all the time. He is not afraid or standoffish like Mr. Bingley the feral cat, Irish will rub up against us and stare me down when it is time to feed Mr. Bingley so he can have the leftovers. 

So the seeds were planted and still more fall seeds will be planted in the near future.  

Each large tank holds some kind of vegetable. 

There is a carrot tank with three varieties of carrots, Purple Dragon, Danver and Parisienne carrot. 

An onion tank with Vidalia, Texas Grande, both short day onion which is important in our area and Flat of Italy which is between a short and long day onion. The onions and carrots will take longer from planting to harvest. 

I ordered seeds from Baker Creek seeds, Willhite seeds, Isla's Garden and David's Seeds and did very careful research and ordered only heirloom seeds so we can hopefully have a better harvest with the late summer and fall plants.  

So after I planted our fresh heirloom seeds on Sunday afternoon, much to my surprise by Thursday many of the seeds were sprouting and already above the ground. This picture above I took today and this is Friday five days after planting.

Beans are up in the pots.

Radishes are poking up and with the wire grid, I will poke a new seed down next week in any spaces that that is empty. Those in the far back of the tank are the Diakon radish which we love boiled or sauteed. 

Even the squash are up..

I am learning to plant seed giving them more space to grow but trying to balance our small growing area. I have a tendency to over crowd the garden beds. 

If you give a plant room and what it needs just one or two plants can feed a family many meals off of that vegetable plant.

I am no expert at gardening, each year we add some compost to our soil, I stick seeds in the ground or pots and hope they grow.  I read about them and try and learn what they need and give them that.  But basically after they are planted it is about keeping them watered and fed. 

We do not like to use chemicals so we are learning how to make our own plant food using other plants. 

If you have a few garden pots or buckets with holes in the bottom, fill them with soil,  you can be surprised at what can be grown in those buckets. 

The signs in August are spent flowers.. But...

The new fall flowers are emerging.

Back inside the house.  I am making chicken stock.

I simmered a whole chicken with carrots, celery, onions, salt, peppercorns and 4 quarts of water for two hours with a lid on the pot.

After we ate our dinner meal with part of the chicken and veggies, we have left three  quarts and one partial pint of chicken broth to use, freeze or can. 

Sometimes when we get busy around the house and with work, we get off balance with our eating and I will start craving the simmered chicken, vegetables and broth.  

I finally cleared this bedroom of sorting items and piles on top of furniture and on the floor.  It took me so long to sort that the room was really a mess so I gave it a deep clean.  I mopped the floor including under the bed and it felt so good to get this room as it should be.

This has been this week at our house, I hope to be planting more seeds this weekend and continue with the sorting because I am getting at the end of all of this mess.  I must be finished by fall according to my mental finishing point. :)  

We will be working up at the tiny house as soon as the weather cools down and why I have not posted any updates on that.  We have the bead board wall paneling still stacked on the floor of the tiny house but it got too hot to work there the last several months so we decided to wait until fall to start back working on it.

Stick a seed in a pot and watch it grow, if it is a vegetable or herb that is even better because it can grow you food.

Grandma Donna

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