I have been holding off on harvest, hoping against hope that some Black Prince and Bonnie Best tomatoes would ripen on the vine. Unfortunately it can be delayed no longer. We are going to the cottage for Thanksgiving weekend and there is a probability of frost. Thursday Danny helped me haul in the potatoes and tomatoes.
I dug the Norland and Warba potatoes much earlier in the summer but left the Bintje in the ground. They rewarded us with a much more substantial crop. Several bizarre shapes emerged, apparently from tubers growing together. These should last us for a couple of months. Lately I have been using potatoes primarily for gluten-free pizza and quiche crusts—easy and delicious!
The tomato vines grew strong and I was able to keep them watered well enough through the July drought. They produced lots of fruit, but they simply would not ripen. Heavy rain in early August and again in September caused many of the largest fruit to crack. Golden Cherry finally started ripening nicely in September. So far we have had none from the two larger varieties. Overall the tomatoes were a major disappointment.
Setting them on our south-facing windowsill may help some of them ripen. Later I will try putting a few in a paper bag with an apple. Apples produce ethylene, which helps other fruit ripen.
A few days ago I picked five nice Table Queen acorn squashes. We ate three of them before I thought of photographing them.
I planned to harvest some herbs on Friday morning before we left for the weekend: rosemary, thyme, tarragon, lemon verbena and pineapple sage. Some will be dried, some steeped in vinegar, and some of the tender cuttings hopefully rooted for next year.
To my delight, we also have a few nice, husky leeks. Most of the transplants were eaten early in the summer by the groundhog or rabbits, but five or six were passed over. I hardly noticed them growing there, and now they are huge. Honestly, I have hardly ever seen leeks bigger than these. Frost will not hurt them, so they can stay in the garden until I need them. I will post photos later. Eventually they may go into a soup with some of those potatoes. The rewards of vegetable gardening are unpredictable.