Spring has Sprung! A Month Early!

Garden peas and sugar snap peas were planted  a week ago! They should be up in about a week.

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Bachelor Buttons, Shasta Daisy, Pansies, Snap Dragons, Marigolds, Foxglove and other flower seed were planted in cell trays. Broccoli, Cabbage and Cauliflower were started as well.

Tomato and Pepper seed will be planted tomorrow.  Full production has started in earnest!

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Flowers have started to bloom. The Crocus and jonquils are showing their lovely blooms!

Watch for more gardening goodies!!!

Papa

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Heritage Day Festival with Papa

Sunday was a beautiful day for a festival. It was a wonderful day to meet and greet new people and the Bluegrass music from the Missouri Ozarks was amazing! What more could you ask from the day?

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My Miss Sunshine was a wonderful helper.

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Gardening questions included “How do you change the color of hydrangeas?”, “Why did my strawberry plants die?”and “You can grow lettuce during the hot summer months?” I plan to address these questions in future posts.

The booth was a stunning success. Heirloom Tomato and Hot/Sweet Pepper transplants in addition to potted June bearing Strawberry plants, Annual Phlox and Hollyhocks were for sale.

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The lettuce bowls with Oak Leaf, Amish Deer Tongue and Red Romaine lettuces with edible Pansy’s were well received.

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Sweet Peas on the vine, Bachelor’s Buttons and Snowball Hydrangeas complimented the booth receiving surprised and rave reviews. People in this area are not familiar with cultivated Sweet Peas and were pleased with their knockout colors and fragrance.

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Thanks again for visiting the world of Papa’s Gardens.

Papa

 

 

See you Sunday!

Sunday, June 5, I will have a vendor space during the Baker Creek* monthly Heritage Days festival.

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I will be selling tomato and hot/ sweet pepper transplants. In addition I will have potted June bearing strawberry plants, Hollyhocks, Annual Phlox and Lettuce bowls for sale.

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I will be featuring my Sweet Peas as cut flowers. They are colorful and fragrant.These may be purchased by the stem or in a bouquet.

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Come on out and say “Hey”.

Papa

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*Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Co., 2278 Baker Creek Road, Mansfield, MO 65704

Festival hours: 10AM to 7PM

 

Further Adventures of Chile de Árbol!!

I harvested the Chile de Árbol early in November. They are drying nicely in my Rock Room. Recycling cardboard flat boxes for drying racks is a worthwhile pursuit. The tall “trees” I cut back to 8″ in the hoop house. I covered the plants with several layers of row cover to overwinter.

These giant tree chilies grew 7 feet tall and produced a good crop of 3″ to 4″ Bird’s Beak or Rat’s Tail chilies.

 

These peppers are not as moist as some varieties. Therefore, they dry exceptionally well.

The next step is to store in a dry place for further use plus I want to try my hand at making ristras.

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Stay tuned! Have a spicy day!

Papa

 

 

The Garden of Treasures!!

My garden is winding down, but look at the treasures! I have always believed you can find beauty and bounty where you least expect it.

For example:

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Look here amongst the weeds:

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So easy to save seeds from Cosmos!! I go along pulling the seed heads. Several hundred seeds in a matter of a minute!!

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My hot pepper “Maule’s Red Hot” is still producing!!

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Last but not least! Treasure from my compost pile!

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Just look at the bounty!

Papa

The Amazing Chili de árbol!!

The Chile de árbol grows into a small tree. In a greenhouse the pepper trees grow more than 10 feet. The Tree Chili is originally from Mexico and is a staple for cooking and seasoning. They are presently growing in my hoop house reaching 6 feet!

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The plants have started to flower as the temperature is a little cooler. I am starting to see fruit set. This variety is a Capsicum anuum type of pepper. The degree of heat is 50,000 to 65,000 *Scoville Units. They may be substituted for Cayenne peppers, with similar flavor and heat.

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When dried the peppers (also called bird’s beak or rat tail chili) hold their beautiful red color which makes them ideal for wreaths.

I will publish again when the trees are full of chilies.

Papa

*Scoville Units – The idea was to dilute an alcohol-based extract made with the given pepper until it no longer tasted hot to a group of taste testers. The degree of dilution translates to the SHU. In other words, according to the Scoville scale, you would need as many as 5,000 cups of water to dilute 1 cup of tobacco sauce enough to no longer taste the heat.   Smithsonian Magazine