A Summer Passing – Rhubarb & Strawberries Farewell

The humidity is not letting up here in eastern Michigan and the temperatures are at or above 90° depending how many clouds block out the sun. My cucumbers are climbing the a-frame and some tomatoes are showing the first signs of orange.

 

Cucumbers

Cucumbers

Roma Tomatoes

Roma Tomatoes

The plum tree is so thick with leaves that finding any plums is a challenge, but they are in there and getting big. Hubby’s been eating them green, but I’m waiting for August when they’ll be ripe and purple.

It’s hard to believe that July is upon us and half the year is gone. In just a few months the winds will start to howl from the north and bring fall and all it’s beauty to our doorstep. With fall comes harvest, which based on the heat and humidity plaguing our days, should be bountiful. The sweet potatoes are spreading, the beets are flourishing, the peppers are blooming, and the kale is thick and lush.

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes

Beets

Beets

Peppers

Peppers

Kale

Kale

Strawberry season is coming to an end far too soon. I wish the sweet ripe berries could last longer than a few glorious weeks.

My strawberry plants

My strawberry plants

Rhubarb, too is starting to wilt. Be it the heat, the humidity or just it’s time, I fear these two will soon be gone for another year. My rhubarb is still small and young and I have no idea what to do with it. Not having grown it before, I’m wondering if I should harvest the tiny stalks or leave them until next year. My plants are nothing like the huge plants I harvested out at the orchard. Do I cut them down to the ground or leave them be until next year?

Rhubarb

Rhubarb

With some of the rhubarb I picked a few weeks ago I made a luscious Rhubarb-Pineapple Jam that truly was the best of both worlds — tart yet sweet.

Rhubarb-Pineapple Jam

DSCF2676

4 Cups Finely Chopped Rhubarb
1 Whole Pineapple Pureed
4 Cups Sugar
5 Tbsp. Clear Jel dissolved in 1/2 Cup Water

Combine rhubarb, pineapple, and sugar in large stock pot. Add Clear Jel dissolved in water. Bring to low boil and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring often. Increase heat and boil hard for one minute. Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes.

Ladle into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space, seal and screw on bands. Process in boiling water bath 10 minutes.

The end of the week should bring some relief from the heat and maybe once again we can bask in the glory of summer instead of hiding out in the air-conditioned house. There is much to be done before fall, many days to enjoy, activities to pursue, and places to go. As winter was unrelenting and confining, so too has summer become — but this too shall pass, I’m sure of it, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.

 

Advertisements

5 responses

  1. Your garden looks fantastic! And that plum tree…. By the time they’re ripe you’ll be swimming in them! (But think of all the lovely things you can/will make!) Beautiful!

    • Last year we had 110 pounds of usable fruit and at least that much we threw out because it had rotted on the tree. I canned or froze every last bit of it. I hope we get at least half that much this year.

  2. Pingback: Clear Jel is the Clear Winner | Simply Grateful Housewife

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s