Harvest Time and a Garden Tour

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Harvest time has begun in the garden... well... we've been enjoying things all summer long out of the garden of course, but the real, in earnest season of harvest is upon us now.  Even though it is still August, Fall is dancing around the door with whispers of cool air in late evenings and early mornings that speak of the days coming when summer will have said its goodbyes. 

Join me in a little tour around my garden in its peak season, the time I've waited for all year long! 

This is early bantam corn, the best variety I've found to grow in our area. It is very productive with short stalks, producing corn on the cob in around 58-60 days after planting. I start all my corn in the greenhouse on April 15 approximately. It needs this extra starting time in order for it to be
 "knee-high by the 4th of July" which is a saying around here that holds true,
if you're going to get a corn harvest or not, you'll know by the 4th of July! 

A basket of garden goodies - corn, zucchini, squash, green beans, peas, cilantro, and kale.  

I've also been doing lots of dehydrating, as this is a way to put up more food, with less storage space. 

Dehydrated zucchini and yellow squash

Dehydrated peppers

 I picked some very early green tomatoes to make Mustard Pickles for my parents. It is a pickle that uses green tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers, and onion. It is delicious! 

Mom's Mustard Pickles

2 quarts green tomatoes, diced
2 quarts cucumbers, diced (if the core has lots of seeds, remove the seeds)
2 quarts onions, diced
2 quarts carrots, peeled, diced, cooked for 10 minutes, drained
1/2 cup pickling salt
1 pt white vinegar
8 cups white sugar
1/2 tsp celery seed
1 tsp tumeric
2 tbsp dry mustard
3/4 cup flour, 1/2 cup vinegar, 1/4 cup water, mixed until smooth

In large pot combine tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and pre-cooked carrots. Pour in salt and vinegar. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Once boiling, turn heat to medium and boil uncovered for 15 minutes. Stir in sugar and spices. Once sugar is completely dissolved, stir in flour/water/vinegar mix. (Make sure the flour/water/vinegar mix is completely smooth with no lumps.) Cook, stirring well for another 5 minutes. This makes about 15 pints. Pour into sterilized jars, add hot lids, and process in a water bath for 10 minutes. Let cool for 24 hours. Remove screw-on lids before storing. 

Oh how I love sunflowers! Their bright faces follow the sun all day long, and they are always such a beautiful picture of Christ in my garden that I love to see! 

Gladiolas... joyful blooms that make your heart sing! 

A view of my garden on one of the many smoky days we endured this summer. 


We love to eat turnips roasted in the oven on a sheet pan with other root veggies, mixed with a bit of butter and some salt/seasoning at 350 for about 45 minutes. They have a delicious buttery flavor when roasted! They are also wonderful in soups and stews. 

My early bantam corn harvest. We had eaten quite a few cobs of corn, but this was the remaining harvest. I have several other varieties of corn in the garden that I am waiting on ripening, hoping they get ripe before the frost/freezes come. 

We like our corn frozen, so I cook the corn and then cut it off the cob and freeze it. SOO good! 

Nothing goes to waste when you have chickens! They enjoy the veggie peelings and corn husks. 

Putting up green beans. I have a mixture of bush, climbing, and yellow beans in the garden.  I mix them all together.  We like our green beans frozen, so I blanch them and freeze them in quart-size ziplock baggies. 

I also blanch and freeze zucchini/squash together.  

Ready for the freezer. When ready to eat, I pull a bag from the freezer and put it into soups and stews all winter long.  They add a wonderful flavor and color to the soup! 

I pickle my peppers and cucumbers.  This year I was able to get some bulk peppers locally and mixed them with the peppers from my garden.  I also got some cucumbers locally as well, as my cucumbers got bit by the late frost in June, and so I had none from my garden. 

Our local county fair is always a delight to visit.
I love to see the creations children come up with using veggies! 

Always a treat to walk through the barns and see the animals so carefully taken care of by the 4H children. Our children did 4H, and those were such special days.
We have wonderful memories of 4H! 

The owner of this sheep was happy to tell me this sheep received some high awards in its class. She was so bubbly and full of information about her sheep. It was wonderful to visit with her! 

The fair had a calf sorting event. Ryan and his friends teamed up together. 

It was fun to watch the event! If you're not familiar with calf sorting events, it is quite entertaining to watch. 10 calves are herded into one corral. Each calf has a number. A team of 2 people are given a number to start with, and they have to sort the calf from the herd one at a time, in numerical order through the gate. It is quite challenging, but several teams were able to sort all 10 calves within one minute through the gate in numerical order. 

Meet two new little additions to our household!  Smoky and Ash are brother and sister and are about 8 weeks old. They are identical in color, but the female is slightly smaller with a left paw that has a dot of white on it, otherwise, they are identical.  They have become quite easy to tell apart by their personalities.  She is sweet and lovable, while he is busy and into everything! It feels like we have babies in the house again, lol! The dogs are tolerating the kitties, and there is an uneasy relationship still. The dogs keep their distance because even though they are tiny, they are now ruling the household, ha! 

All snuggled up in their cat tree. 

Pure sweetness! 

We have new neighbors in our area, and we invited them over for homemade pizza and huckleberry cobbler. I used some fresh veggies from the garden on the pizza. I made regular homemade pizza crust and also made a sourdough pizza.  It was all so good!

Danielle and I enjoyed a mother/daughter's day out together recently. We met at a local coffee shop, and then visited some little shops and went to the mall. We both needed a new pair of shoes, and we both ended up finding a pair that would work for us, and since we both wear the same shoe size, now we have identical shoes :) It was a sweet day for us both. 

... As I've been writing this post... my garden received its first frost on August 23rd.  

It was a light frost, and mostly just curled leaves, for which I'm thankful. 

Covering the vulnerable veggies with sheets worked really well. When I went to lift the sheets off the veggies, the sheets were stiff as a board with frost.  I'm so thankful I went ahead and covered them! 

Our weather pattern has definitely shifted into fall, and we have received over 3/4" of rain in the last week, which is a tremendous amount of rain compared to the few drops of rain we've had since March. We are so thankful! 

A lovely bouquet of flowers picked from my garden, how thankful I am that the frost was light, and the garden is still growing. I am putting up food and giving it away too, as much as possible. I am grateful for the fresh food we are enjoying now!  And of course, my flowers are food for our souls :) 

As we've just received word of the horrible events that happened today in Afghanistan, our hearts are broken and weeping as we watch this tragedy unfold. Our prayers and thoughts are with those who have given so much and paid with the sacrifices of their lives.  I pray for the mercies of the Lord to comfort, protect and be with those who are living in terror and fear around the world, but especially today in Afghanistan. 

The Lord brought this scripture to mind today, and as I am praying, I am believing and trusting for this day to come soon, very soon. This is the hope we have that one day true peace will reign, not man's peace, but peace that comes from the Lord Almighty God himself.  No man will set up this kingdom, but the Lord himself will orchestrate it. My eyes remain on the Lord, despite the difficult days we find ourselves in. It is good for us to remember that the Lord is still God, and even while nations fight, wars rage, and corrupt leaders reign, He is still Lord over all this earth. This is our hope!

Isaiah 60

Arise, shine, for your light has come,
and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.
See, darkness covers the earth
and thick darkness is over the peoples,
but the Lord rises upon you
and his glory appears over you.
Nations will come to your light,
and kings to the brightness of your dawn.
All assemble and come to you;
your sons come from afar,
and your daughters are carried on the hip.
Then you will look and be radiant,
your heart will throb and swell with joy;
the wealth on the seas will be brought to you,
to you the riches of the nations will come.
Herds of camels will cover your land,
young camels of Midian and Ephah.
And all from Sheba will come,
bearing gold and incense
and proclaiming the praise of the Lord.
All Kedar’s flocks will be gathered to you,
the rams of Nebaioth will serve you;
they will be accepted as offerings on my altar,
and I will adorn my glorious temple like doves to their nests
 Surely the islands look to me; in the lead are the ships of Tarshish,[a]
bringing your children from afar,
with their silver and gold,
to the honor of the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendor.
and their kings will serve you.
Though in anger I struck you,
in favor I will show you compassion.
Your gates will always stand open,
they will never be shut, day or night,
so that people may bring you the wealth of the nations—
their kings led in triumphal procession.
For the nation or kingdom that will not serve you will perish;
it will be utterly ruined,  the juniper, the fir and the cypress together,
to adorn my sanctuary; and I will glorify the place for my feet.
The children of your oppressors will come bowing before you;
all who despise you will bow down at your feet
and will call you the City of the Lord, Zion of the Holy One of Israe
 with no one traveling through,
I will make you the everlasting pride and the joy of all generations.
You will drink the milk of nations and be nursed at royal breasts.
Then you will know that I, the Lord, am your Savior,
your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.
Instead of bronze I will bring you gold,
and silver in place of iron.
Instead of wood I will bring you bronze,
and iron in place of stones.
I will make peace your governor
and well-being your ruler.
No longer will violence be heard in your land,
nor ruin or destruction within your borders,
but you will call your walls Salvation
and your gates Praise.
The sun will no more be your light by day,
nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you,
for the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your God will be your glory.
Your sun will never set again,
and your moon will wane no more;
the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your days of sorrow will end.
Then all your people will be righteous
and they will possess the land forever.
They are the shoot I have planted,
the work of my hands,
for the display of my splendor.
The least of you will become a thousand,
the smallest a mighty nation.
I am the Lord; 
in its time I will do this swiftly.


  1. These are dark days, indeed, Marilyn, but the photos of your garden harvest brought me such joy and cheer today, my friend. I'm so impressed by how you don't let one bit of it go to waste. Yes, it's a lot of work, but so worth it when winter rolls around. Thanks for showing us God's goodness in so many things, including your new kitties! :)

  2. Thanks for sharing the scripture and your thoughts at the end of the post. It's in our minds all the time. Your garden is beautiful and I know you work hard to make it special. Yesterday I was going through some books in my bookcase and sat down on the floor with your book and looked at it again. What a coincidence to see your post this morning. I was thinking about you!

  3. i LOVE that portion of Scripture from Isaiah. It's one i turn to often to pray over.

    Love all your farm bounty. I cannot IMAGINE running a farm....wow.....I sure do appreciate the Farmers Markets around here in eastern NY to buy fresh produce and yummy berries. Your zucchini looks great! one of my FAVES!!

    ENJOY the rest of the summer season!

  4. Harvest time is wonderful and busy. I enjoyed reading about yours.

    Good words to end by...

  5. We've had trouble finding good corn this year on Cape Cod ... looking at yours made me smile, Marilyn!

  6. The productivity of your garden and how you use it all is impressive. Thanks for that scripture. Good reminder of who is in charge.

  7. I so enjoyed sharing your lovely and productive garden with you! Thank you for sharing! it looks lovely around here, my friend! And I join you in prayer for all the horrible events in our world.

  8. Even with all the turmoil and troubles around us, we can be assured that God is in full control. Your garden produce looks wonderful and so delicious.

  9. Your garden could be in a home and garden magazine. Beautiful.

  10. Thank you for the inclusion of the beautiful scripture from Isaiah. A needed reminder to keep our eyes on God and not on the circumstances around us. There will be a day of joy if we believe.
    Lovely vegetables. yummy!

  11. The peaches this year were not to soft or juicy. The plums on the other hand were delicious and juicy. Harvest in a beautiful time.

  12. Your garden has been very productive and you've been busy canning and freezing!! My Mom made delicious Mustard Pickles too but I never have.
    Smoky and Ash are adorable. No need to ask why you chose their names.

  13. Wow, your garden is so full of delicious veggies. How special to be able to be able to grow in abundance. The canning is something I did when my children were younger. Lovely scripture Marilyn. Enjoy.

  14. Your garden and produce are beautiful! You have been busy.
    Smoky and Ash are both pretty too - and the names are perfect.
    Thanks for sharing that scripture. Such a comfort to remember that God is in control!

  15. You have built such a lovely garden space! And those pickles look and sound amazing!! I, too, am just so broken hearted over all that is happening. If you listen to John Cooper's "Cooper Stuff" episode called "Wokeness is Weakness," he talks about the awful things they are doing to Christians. I have never seen such awful, troubled times. God is our only hope. May God bless you, sweet friend. Sending love and hugs your way!

  16. Dearest Marilyn,
    what a wonderful world you live in and your inner Joy makes everything even more Beautiful, my lovely Lady!
    Take care and thank you for being so precious to me!
    Xx Daniela at ~ My little old world ~

  17. That garden is amazing. You and I live very different lives, I don't garden and I my cooking abilities are limited. You are a gift from God! I used to grow sunflowers every year but then suddenly one year the tiny leaves were eaten. I don't know if it's from rabbits or what but after trying for a few years I just stopped. I really need to plant some this year. They really do bring joy! The Lord knows we need joy more than ever now. This world is becoming darker by the minute. I thank God none of this has taken Him by surprise. He has a plan. We just have to keep our eyes on Him. God bless you Marilyn!

  18. Hi,
    FROST.. oh goodness, it is hard to think about in the heat wave we are having, but I know it is around the bend.
    Thank you for the prayers.. as an Army Mom, to see that American's do care about our military means a great deal to me.
    Love, Carla

  19. Thank you for the scripture.

    Your basket of garden goodies looks so good and what a wonderful selection too.

    Our days are getting cooler here, but no frosts yet!
    I can't believe that this Wednesday it will be 1st September.

    Take care, my good wishes.

    All the best Jan

  20. I enjoyed your garden tour Marilyn! You have given your heart and soul to this beautiful garden and all its abundance! I love green tomato relish and my mom used to make "bread and butter" pickles, which she called them, but they sound like your mustard pickles! Funny how we can what our moms canned. Thank you for the scripture.... I pray alot but feel that God does not answer at all... though I still turn to Him for help and guidance.. I just feel like too many horrible things are happening in the world, and how can HE keep up with it? Love your new kitties.. and the color and the names! Did you pull them out of the smoke and ash??!! I once had a little white wolf/shepherd dog that we named "Dusty" as got him up in Eastern Washington during the summer when it was so hot and dusty! It sure did fit him. We haven't had a frost yet, but are getting close. Has gotten down to 36 a couple of nights, though days are still hot and no rain! Take care.. Marilyn

  21. Such a wonderful post, full of beauty and joy and blessings in abundance! You truly have a gift for growing things and making every bit of it count! Oh, to be able to sit at your table and enjoy the bounty from your harvest!! I have never been able to do that, and I just think that would be the most wonderful thing on earth to do! (but I don't have the patience or the green thumb to do it, so it is just a nice dream). I love your sweet kitties too! I bet the doggies will love them in time. Yes, we are all terribly saddened by the events taking place in Afghanistan and in our government today. Praying for God to open the eyes of the blind before it is too late. Thank you again for your faith and for your gift of enjoying God's harvest of abundance. What blessings!!!

  22. Marilyn, what a lovely post and tour of your garden. You look so beautiful in your picture! I've never heard of mustard pickles before. ♥

  23. Isaiah 60 means the world to me. So much is going on. Dear Lord.


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