The Weekly Digs #210

by Becky

Last week I sat down to write out my week and I legitimately had nothing come to mind! We did do things but between lack of sleep and stress I couldn’t get anything down. Luckily, this week I do have more to share.

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In the Garden

Corn Planting and the Birds

We planted another succession of sweet corn. This is something we really love! And so do the local wildlife. I thought we were past the point of needing nets for corn but I was wrong. 

The birds had themselves a healthy snack of freshly soaked corn kernels. They wait until they sprout then pick the whole thing out of the ground and eat only the corn seed. 

Thankfully, we planted enough seeds that I could transplant them around to where all the gaps were and everything looks ok now. They didn’t eat all of them like the first few years, but more like nibbled here and there. I hope it stays that way and they don’t eat more!

Kelloggs Breakfast tomato. 1 lb 14 oz

Beans, Rabbits, and Chipmunks

Another animal problem we’ve been having is the rabbits! Man, they are pesky this year. We did move out all the baby bunnies we found several months ago in the strawberries, so I know it’s not them but perhaps the next generation of babies from nearby.

They can fit through the welded wire fence and they ate all the bean tops from the beans in my tunnel. I had no idea they did that until I saw the rabbit there one night. 

Then Cam saw a chipmunk in the tunnel and he said it looked like it was eating the bean tops too. Cam was able to remove the chipmunk and we thought the problem was resolved.

But then I started to see some bean tops being eaten from another area of the garden and found that it was indeed the rabbits eating them again. 

We may add some chicken wire to the bottom of the fence to prevent rabbits but likely not this summer. It would be a winter project due to the time involved.

My friend Jill from the Beginners Garden said in her Instagram stories that she had used row covers for her beans to keep down the pest pressure and keep rabbits at bay. I thought that was a good alternative plan.

The beans seem to mostly be growing back and so for right now I’ll just keep an eye on them but it they mow the beans down again the row cover will need to go on!

Currently harvesting:

Summer squash (45lbs between this week and last!), cucumbers (25lbs), tomatoes, kale, celery (35lbs, we harvested all of it at once), basil, green onions, and arugula.

Here is the garden tour for June:

YouTube video

Preserving

We have had many heat advisory days which means we spend a little more time inside. Of course, this means that I can get some preservation done!

I made a 2x batch of sausage and bean soup from THIS BOOK. I made a bunch of beef stock too, so I could use it in the soup.

Then I had so much beef stock, instead of canning it plain, I decided to make another 2x batch of sausage and bean soup.

So I ended up with 25 quarts of soup. Soup was the most popular item in the pantry last year. The kids love to eat them because they are an easy no work meal (for them at least, haha!).

We also made a bunch of stewed garlic squash for the freezer. Photo above,

The other thing we have been working on is freeze drying green onions. I harvested all of them so we could plant the corn.

Whew! It’s a busy time of year. I’m super thankful Cam has been home on paternity leave, it has been amazing to have him around more to help and do projects. That is the only way we have been able to keep up! Everyone in the family is pitching to help.

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14 comments

Alyssa July 16, 2023 - 12:44 pm

Hey Becky! I loved this post and your June Garden video – very inspiring and helpful as we continue to expand our growing areas over here. Do you have a recipe for your stewed garlic squash? Thanks!

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theseasonalhomestead July 18, 2023 - 2:33 am

Thanks! It comes from the book Freeze Fresh by Crystal Schmidt. Here is a link to the book, lots of good recipes in there! Freeze Fresh

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Laura July 16, 2023 - 2:27 pm

Hi Becky! I don’t know if this is the right place for me to ask this question, so I apologize if it isn’t. I was just wondering what kind of drone you have/use for all the gorgeous drone shots in your June garden tour. I’ve been meaning to buy a drone for the same thing myself for a while now, and I was kind of amazed at how good the video quality of yours is. Anyway, I know this is really random, but if you could give me the name of it that would be great! 🙂

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theseasonalhomestead July 18, 2023 - 2:37 am

Thanks! And of course you can ask here! I just upgraded mine, it’s the DJI Mavic 3 Pro.

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GardenLover July 16, 2023 - 3:49 pm

What is your process for freezing foods like the squash? Anything important to know? When you have time I’d love to learn about how you do that, in a video or a post!

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theseasonalhomestead July 18, 2023 - 2:46 am

I usually always blanch veggies before freezing. For most things it’s about 2-3 minutes in boiling water, then transfer immediately to an ice bath to stop them from cooking. There are a few exceptions like the green onions I froze this week don’t need blanching and neither do fruits. The squash was a recipe from the book Freeze Fresh, it’s simple but delicious!

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GardenLover July 19, 2023 - 11:53 pm

Thanks Becky! P.S. your content is some of the best there is for gardens! The way you do YT is so calm and peaceful to watch & so visually appealing! And I always learn something! Planting cowpeas this year for the first time inspired by you and hoping Lord willing to make your favourite soup! Thank you for making time to continue the “weekly digs” 💛 also know if you need a break we don’t mind!

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theseasonalhomestead July 23, 2023 - 10:50 pm

Thank you! 🙂 I really appreciate your kind words! It means a lot to me.

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Elise July 18, 2023 - 12:46 am

What’s stewed garlic squash? Sounds amazing! Thanks for the post, I can’t imagine how tough it must be to get everything done with your sweet baby stealing the show all the time 🙂

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theseasonalhomestead July 18, 2023 - 2:51 am

Thanks! The stewed garlic squash is from the book Freeze Fresh.

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TiaM July 26, 2023 - 1:14 pm

Thank you for continuing to find the time to post her and on YT, I had really learned so much from your family.

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theseasonalhomestead August 6, 2023 - 6:11 am

So glad to help! Thanks for being here!

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Margo August 3, 2023 - 11:42 pm

Hi Becky!
I came to your YT channel and blog site today to find out your favorite methods for preserving certain foods. I was specifically wondering about green beans (I found your old blog post about freezing them — is this still your favorite method?) and potatoes, sweet potatoes, peaches and corn. Would it be possible to write a blog post about all your favorite methods of preserving each thing you grow? I trust your opinion and don’t want to make a costly mistake if there is a better way to preserve with attention to taste, texture etc. Thank you for all you do!
Blessings and love from,
Margo in Colorado

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theseasonalhomestead August 6, 2023 - 6:35 am

Hi Margo! I will make a note of this for a future blog post! Yes, our preferred method for green beans is freezing. I also prefer frozen corn. Sweet potatoes keep at room temperature for 9 months so we don’t preserve them in any way. Potatoes also don’t generally preserve in any way, we try and keep them cold and in a dark spot so they last for a while. For peaches we like canned halves or slices in syrup or freeze dried bits.

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