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Friday, September 14, 2012

What did I Grow?

Summer Squash or a Green Pumpkin?

Another Green Pumpkin I think

My Watermelon next to this Green Summer Squash

A baby watermelon growing
I love gardening and this year I purchased Summer Squash seeds and planted them in my garden. What did I grow? This does not look like a summer squash that is pictured on the seed package it looks more like a pumpkin a green pumpkin.

I am letting the other summer squash on the vine to see if it does change color to orange this is wild to see what becomes of it. I really wanted to fry the squash to eat. I did plant pumpkin on the other side of the house where I have a garden with watermelon and the real pumpkin.

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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Mammoth Sunflowers

Mammoth Sunflower

The one by the mail box

Over 12 feet tall

So Beautiful
This year I planted Mammoth Sunflowers in my front yard. They are beautiful and very tall. I want to harvest the edible seeds. The sunflowers attract bees on the flowers which helps both the flowers and the bees.
I love to Garden and the experience when your plants grow is the most exciting part of gardening.

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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Black Bean Soup

Today I am making Black Bean Soup and have no clue of how to make this. My sons girlfriend likes this Black Bean Soup so here I go again to add whatever I like to add from my frig into this pot of soup.

I washed and set aside the Black Beans in Cold Water while I prepared the veggies to add to the pot.

I started with dicing 1/4 onions red or white whatever you have is fine. I diced from my garden 1 Japanese eggplant with the skins on, diced very small 5 small carrots from my garden, diced red peppers.
You can add anything you like into your soup.

I always start out with all my diced veggies adding about two tablespoons of olive oil and I use my wooden spoon to saute them. Then adding 6 to 8 or more cups of water or more if needed , 6 chicken bullion's cubes, two packs of Powder Pollo chicken.

Bring to a boil add the Black Beans and spices like a sprinkle of onion salt, garlic salt, garlic powder, parsley, dill, Mrs. Dash.

I also added after boiling the soup from my garden 5 whole cherry tomatoes and from my garden two slices of cucumbers without the seeds.

You can add a handful of pasta to the soup if you like. I added Ronzoni Acini Di Pepe  pasta.

You can add anything you like or can change whatever I put into my soups and I always taste my soup to my liking and so can you.

You can be creative and in your individual bowl add either a little spoonful of sour cream, light cream, sprinkle Parmesan cheese or just leave it plain. It's all up to your very own taste and I never made this before and my Black Bean Soup was the best ever.

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Saturday, July 14, 2012

My Garden 2012 Produce

I have been watering my garden often and do have a moisture meter to see how much water the garden is getting. I have already been since June picking tomatoes and tons of them. I have been giving some away to family and they love them and looking for more.

I have picked so far the cherry tomatoes and yesterday I picked a zucchini, baby Japanese egg plants, string beans and sweet peas.

I have added another Garden this year which makes it three Gardens this year which keeps me busy but I love and enjoy gardening.
Assortment of veggies in my garden

Husky Cherry Tomatoes

Butternut squash, cucumbers, peppers, yellow squash and more

Two ladybugs in my garden

Some veggies I picked
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Ladybugs for my Garden 2012

 Every year for my Garden I purchase Praying mantis egg cases and hatch them indoors in a brown lunch bag. When they hatch I release them into my Garden in June.

I also ordered 2,000  Live Lady Bugs for my Garden and release them. Ladybugs arrive in a cloth bag ready for release which I sent them out in July.

Both the Ladybug and Praying Mantis are Beneficial for my Garden they eat the Bad Bugs that harms your Garden plants.

Releasing 2,000 Ladybugs
Ladybugs on the cloth bag
Ladybugs are hungry and ready to eat those bad bugs 
My baby Praying Mantis I released in my Garden in June 

Ladybug is probably the best known beneficial insect available. They feed mainly on aphids (40-50 per day)
but will also attack a wide variety of other soft-bodied pests, including mites, leafhoppers and mealybugs. They will attack all stages of these pest, eggs, larval and adult.

This is so much fun and if you have small children this is a beneficial educational project for them to experience.

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Monday, July 2, 2012

My Garden I started in April 2012

My Garden  at the Jersey Shore NJ
Cherry tomatoes turning red in June 2012

More Tomatoes 

Swallowtail Caterpillar on my parsley

Swallowtail Butterfly on my tomatoes

One side of my large Garden

Another side of my large garden Zucchini 

My little garden with 7 cherry tomatoes dill and the parsley

Asparagus plant first year turns into a fern and can harvest next summer
This year I started my garden early in April a few of my plants I started indoors and was able to plant them outside. I started Butternut Squash, Cherry vine Tomato's and Red peppers. When the plants were too big to keep inside I planted them outside in April to see if they would take and they did.

I have on the west side of my house two Gardens. My little garden has 7 Cherry Husky Tomatoes plus I planted at the end of this little Garden Curled Parsley, Italian Flat Leaf Parsley and Fern Dill. The parsley attracts the Swallowtail Butterfly they lay their eggs on the parsley and the caterpillar's eat the parsley until they are ready to turn into a butterfly. 

On the west side of my house I have a Large Garden and here is the list of what is in my Large Garden.
Butternut squash, Cucumbers, Zucchini, 9 Yellow straight neck Squash, New Mexico hot pepper, Cayenne hot pepper, Red peppers, Gypsy peppers, 12 Asparagus plants, Cherry 101 tomato, 7 Cherry Husky tomatoes, 1 Chocolate cherry tomato, 2 Ichiban Japanese Eggplant's, 1 Sweet and Nasty cherry tomato.
And my two plants I grew indoors the Cherry vine tomato and Red pepper. 

I love tomato's and I always always plant a Lot of them every year.This year I am already getting ripe ones off the vine and this is June. I also release Baby Praying Mantis in my Garden when they hatch indoors they are beneficial bugs that eat the bad bugs in my garden.

Plus this year I started an New additional Garden on the East side of my house. I planted 4 Sweet Watermelons and 2 Pumpkins. On the East side of my house I planted String Beans, Corn, and a Blue Hubbard Squash.

I water both Garden very early in the morning before the sun comes up. I am so surprised that I am picking my red cherry tomatoes so early this year in June. My other plants have flowers on them and my New Mexico hot pepper already has a pepper on it. 

On my front porch I have planters not only with flowers for color but I have String Beans, Sweet Peas,
Snow Bird Peas,  Mixed beans white, lentil, chickpeas growing. 

I have a ton of Veggies growing all over my home plus Strawberries, Figs even Mammoth Sunflowers from seed. Carrots, Mesclun Salad Mix Lettuce, Sweet long pepper mixed colors and more corn.

Love Gardening and Remember.

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Thursday, June 14, 2012

Fried thin chicken breast two different ways

Today I had a package of thin chicken breast and wanted to do something different with it. So I wanted to use my two cooking sauces from Kraft which comes with a dressing to dip your chicken in.

I sliced the chicken into strips and mixed half of the chicken  portion into the remainder of my teriyaki ginger cooking sauce (Asian chicken cooking sauce).

Let it soak for in a small bowl a few minutes then sprinkle a coat of flour on top and mix. I mixed the second half of my chicken strips into the Southwest chicken Zesty Fajita cooking sauce.

In a fry pay with olive oil heated add your chicken strips and fry each side that's it and easy.

I tasted the teriyaki ginger chicken strip as is and tasted very good and then I took the Barbecue Ranch dressing (southwest chicken dressing) and the (Asian chicken dressing) Toasted sesame dressing that comes with the package and dipped the chicken into the dressing.

Both dressing tasted great with the teriyaki ginger chicken strips.

Chicken strips coated with Asian Teriyaki ginger cooking sauce and dipped in dressing

Barbecue Ranch  Southwest dressing or  Toasted Sesame Asian dressing
Then I took the other half of the thin chicken breast and sliced it and mixed it with Zesty Fajita (Southwest) cooking sauce in a bowl and added flour. I then fried the chicken in a pan using olive oil both sides.

This flavor of chicken tasted so good and I decided to taste it as is and tried a little of the Dressings that comes in the package made by Kraft. Both dressings taste good with both types of my chicken Teryaki and Zesty Fajita.

Cooking Sauce and Dressing by Kraft comes in a set
Both the chicken with and without the dressings were great and I did mix and match the dressings.

You can make a wrap or add the chicken on top of your mixed veggie salad and top with the dressing.

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