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The garden is growing really well this year. Our tomato plants already have small tomatoestomatoe and our peppers have little peppers. pepperThe loofahs (sponges to be) have beautiful leaves (I can not wait to see the fruit).loofahs

We water the garden from our rain barrel. rain barrel 1We need one full barrel per day. Jacques fills it from other barrels scattered around the barn and the house.rain barrel 2 rain barrel4

Some beans have some flowersbeans and we can already see some ground cherry plants growing.
(To read more about this wonderful plant please visit our posts from last year: A Garden Update, Some Handy Tips And A Recipe!A summer garden update and 2 recipesEnd of August : What’s new in the garden?
ground cherry and sunflower

Our flowers have also started to grow and the sunflowers will be huge !!IMAG2640 flowers

Yesterday we ate our 1st cucumber from the gardencucumber, and also enjoyed our first zucchinis,round zucchinis peppers and made our 1st salad with our own vegetables and herbs: beets, beet greens (the leaves from the beet plant), cucumber and basil. beets and lettucebasilIt was Really Delicious!

This year, we may have some cantaloupes cantaloupeand pears.pears

The red currants started to turn red red currantsand our black currants are growing well.black currants

With my daughter’s wedding coming in August my Mother came from France to stay with us. With her we started to make our 1st jams. We made batches of rhubarb jam and our 1st red currant jelly. Here is how we made them.rhubarb jam and red currant jelly

Red Currant Jelly

  • We left the red currants in clusters and rinsed them under running water.
  • We put them in a large pot over low heat so the red currants could open in the heat and release their juice.
  • Once they had been reduced to juice we put them through a food mill to remove their seeds. Now we had pure currant juice.
  • Then we weighed the juice and added 75% of the juice’s weight in sugar.
  • We put the sweetened juice back into a large pot over high heat.
  • When it began to boil we reduced the heat and stirred it often. You have to watch carefully at this stage since depending on the fruits acidity it can go to gel very quickly. To find out if it’s ready, we took a small sample of the liquid and put it on a plate. We tilted the plate from right to left and when the liquid began to set (look wrinkled and gel) we knew it was ready.
  • While it was still hot and liquid we poured it into sterilized mason jars, and let it set and the jars seal.
    Tastes Great!

Rhubarb jam

  • First we peeled the long rhubarb sticks and cut them in pieces approximately 1 inch.
  • We weighed them and added 75% of the weight in sugar.
  • Next we put the cut rhubarb and sugar in a large pot over high heat and brought it to a boil.
  • Then we continued to make it the same way we made the red currant jelly.

This is a yummy jam!
We are so happy to have such a nice productive garden. We will give you another update next month.

To all of our readers enjoying their summers, Happy Gardening!