Having a long term plan, broken down into smaller steps, is something I like. It gives me a sense of direction and productivity, rather than just drifting along not being really sure that what I do today will get me to the actual place I want to end up. With that in mind, I created some Yearly Garden Goals this year.
I have always had a general idea of what I wanted the outcome of the garden, or produce obtained otherwise, to be. This was the first year for me to actually write it down. It definitely seems more daunting on paper.
It is always helpful, though, to be able to roll with the punches. Last spring found me adjusting my household to some major changes, at a time when I should have been planting the garden. I basically lowered my expectations to hoping for some tomatoes from the garden to add to our salads each week and to having no canning happen. In the end, though, I was able to do some canning at the end of the season and focused on using up canned goods from previous years.
You never know what life will hold in store, but you can plan for what you know right now and hope for the best.
Now, on to review how it is going so far.
1. Put up enough tomato sauce and crushed tomatoes for the year that I will not have to buy any. That comes out to about 77 quarts of sauce. – Out of the 8 tomato plants I had planted in my garden in a rush one day, two have survived. Thankfully I have more that I was unable to plant. Not sure how these will due with the lack of rain we have been having. I do have a plan B for obtaining tomatoes come fall, if that is what it takes.
2. Can up the equivalent of 52 quarts of beets. – I have done no canning of beets yet. We’ll see what the next few weeks brings.
3. Restock my apple sauce/pear sauce supply. – this is more of a fall goal, so no work on it yet.
4. Not have to buy herbs from the store because I will have them in the garden. This would include cilantro, parsley and basil. – Parsley is looking good, as is the basil. The cilantro I originally put in the garden did not far well in the hot weather. Not sure what I am going to do about that one.
5. Grow, or obtain, green onions to freeze for use in beef stew this winter. – I planted the first round and the second round of green onions. The first is looking good so far, but I haven’t seen the second round appear. It is too early to expect to see any green tops from those. We’ll have to wait and see if anything appears.
6. Freeze baggies of chopped colored peppers for use in making meatloaf, omelets, etc. We are not fans of green peppers, so will not be chopping and freezing any. – There are 4 plants of red peppers and 4 of purple peppers growing. I have more waiting to either be planted or sold; again, we’ll wait and see what happens with those.
7. Grow lettuce, cherry tomatoes and cucumbers to supplement our weekly salads. – So far, 4 cucumbers plants have been started, with the intent to start 4 more. The initial lettuce planting didn’t do well; only 1 out of the 16 seeds planted sprouted. The second planting gave me 2 more plants. The cherry tomatoes didn’t survive the first planting due to heat. I’ll replant the cherry tomatoes and perhaps try again with the lettuce, but growing or starting it inside.
What looked like a great start to the gardening season has recently run into a few hiccups. However, I’m not beaten yet and still have some optimism that things will work out.