A photo of Shannon SaiaAs I cruise into September,  I am feeling an unfamiliar sense of satisfaction with my garden this year. We actually made it through the summer without being overwhelmed by weeds. These days it’s actually a pleasure to wander through and to pluck grass out by the roots after a heavy rain. Grass, and my yard’s indigenous weeds, still continue to sprout up, but it isn’t so much that I can’t deal with it, and I am absolutely thrilled. For one thing, it’s allowed me to turn my thoughts to other things, like mulching with the huge amount of dead pear tree leaves in our yard. I’ve also decided to stop even pretending that I’m making compost. I admit to being a compost idiot. I’m not even going to try. The past month or so I’ve just been burying our kitchen scraps out in the garden, in areas that are currently unused and which will not be used until next spring/summer. I also ran across a book on Amazon that I would buy if I could afford to pay out of print prices for it, but I can’t. These days, if it isn’t 99 cents on the Kindle, I’m not buying. I would include the link for it, but now I can’t find it. Argh. However, one of the things the woman was known for was just spreading her kitchen scraps in the garden and letting them compost in place. That’s me. Her gardening theory gives credibility to my laziness and ineptitude! 

 So, I’m mulching with leaves and composting in place. I am also absolutely rocking the eggplants this year!  

 Listada DiGandia Eggplant 

  close up Listada DiGandia Eggplant 

  black beauty eggplants 

It’s the first year that I have ever had an abundance of eggplants. I read somewhere (sorry, I'm bad about sources tonight) that the nightshade vegetables appreciate an occasional drink of water that's had a big spoonful of yogurt stirred into it, for the beneficial bacteria, so I did that once a few weeks ago and who knows, maybe it's helped. All I know is that I have three nice Listada DiGandia eggplants on my counter right now, and I'm having one of the black beauties cubed and roasted with fingerling potatoes, cherry tomatoes, garlic, and peppers over rice for dinner tonight. I’ve been slicing them, brushing them with olive oil and grinding sea salt on them and broiling them. I’ve then sliced the roasted eggplant into salads, which has been awesome. I’ve used the leftovers the next day to make sandwiches with tomato, basil and mozzarella which is double awesome. I’ve cut them in half and baked them, scooped out the soft, baked eggplant, and spread it on French bread. I’ve also mixed this soft eggplant into tomato sauce. I’m really loving it.  

S.M.R. Saia
9/6/2012 5:43:21 PM

I can feel for you with the groundhog-eaten tomatoes. Same thing happened to me. Those groundhogs are real buggers. I have plans to really shore up that fence line this year! Thanks for buying my book! I have been really excited about some of the cool gardening e-books that are out there for very affordable prices, so I will certainly continue to share as I discover them!

8/29/2012 6:00:24 PM

Shannon, the last mud picture of your daughter is classic. We haven't seen mud like that in months. My garden's eggplants have done really well too. I will have to try some of your ideas to use the eggplants. The tomatoes have been discovered by the ground hog. A big chomp has been taken out of every ripe tomato. I finally got the gate for the fenced in area in place. Now I have to finish the bottom foot of the fence. It's been a real learning experience on how to coexist with wild life. I expect that I'll be learning for the next couple years how to do that. I missed you freebie over the weekend but I bought it for $.99. It's still a bargain. Thanks for always giving us a heads up about e-books to buy at a reduced price. Have a great day in the garden.

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