CAYENNE – LONG RED SLIM

CAYENNE – LONG RED SLIM

~CAYENNE – LONG RED SLIM~

My Paw-Paw grew Jalapenos and these. I can remember the strings of dry Cayenne hanging on the walls in my Maw-Maw’s kitchen…so beautiful! We grew these last year (2011), and I’d have to say they were the easiest to dry…string ‘em and hang ‘em, that’s all I did. The Serrano and Anaheim chili peppers got moldy and found their way into the trash…but the Cayenne are hanging in my kitchen even now. As a matter of fact my chiropractor recommended I make a tea of Cayenne pepper and lemon. I was delighted that I had my own organically grown pepper perfectly preserved hanging from a shelf in my kitchen. I really thought the tea would be hard to choke down, but you know…it was really kinda good…like, I’m thinking of making me a cup now.

Very hot fruits average 5 inches long and ½ inch thick. Use fresh, or dry for winter use. Harvest starts about 75 days after plants are set out. CAUTION: Use rubber gloves, or clean hot peppers under running water, to avoid skin burn from the pepper juice.

Height:
18-24

Spacing:
12-15 in.

Spread:
16 inches

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Heat (Pungency):
Hot(30,000 to 50,000 Scoville Units)

Fruit Shape:
Tapered
Twisted

Fruit Size:
Medium (4″ to 6″ in length)

Days to Maturity:
75 days

Fruit Colors:
Green changing to red

Seed Type:
Open-pollinated

Usage:
Fresh (salsa, salads)
Drying
Pickling

VIRGINIA GOLD TOBACCO

VIRGINIA GOLD TOBACCO

~VIRGINIA GOLD TOBACCO~

Did you know that it’s legal to grow and process your own tobacco for personal use?

Well, it is! And growing tobacco is as easy as growing tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, and even petunias…they’re all from the same family – Solanaceae (Night Shade).

Tobacco is very similar to a petunia, only it grows much faster. If you can grow a petunia, you can grow this plant.

In these tough economic times, most of us are looking for ways to save money. If you’re a smoker, you can drastically cut expenses by growing your own.

If you’re not a smoker, tobacco can be grown as an ornamental. Virginia Gold Tobacco can grow up to 6 to 7 feet tall and makes a nice screen for privacy, or to hide unsightly areas. Also, the beautiful pink trumpet blooms are a favorite of humming birds. Another cool thing you can do with the plant is pick off leaves, dry them and steep them in water overnight for a natural, non-selective contact insecticide.

I found some answered FAQs about homegrown tobacco here.

Click here to view the outstanding video made by my friend, Larry Hall,“Why Raise Your Own Tobacco?”

Larry has lots of GREAT videos on his YouTube channel for growing, harvesting, and curing your own tobacco. Like: How To Germinate And Start Tobacco Seeds!, Planting and growing your own Organic Tobacco!,and Harvesting, Hanging, and Curing you own Organic Tobacco!.

TOMA VERDE

TOMA VERDE

~TOMA VERDE~

Tomatillo was a new experience for me as of 2011. I did not know much about growing this plant, but was glad I got two, because two are required to make fruit…as, unlike tomatoes and peppers, the tomatillo cannot successfully self-pollinate. It doesn’t need another tomatillo, any groundcherry will do the job. If the plants are left to sprawl on the ground they may only get 3 feet tall, but I recommend caging them in a corner of the yard.

These are warm season plants and while they will produce an abundance of blooms, none will set fruit until after…I want to say, mid-July in Central Minnesota…after it gets really hot and stays really warm throughout the night. That’s okay though. These giants produce way more fruit than anyone could ever put up.

If you want to get a free, no work taste of the flavor of this fruit, try the Verde Salsa from Taco Bell.

You can also purchase tomatillo’s from the grocery store to make the following recipe. Bear in mind, grocery store produce will never taste as good as what you pull from the plants growing in your back yard…

Tomatillo Salsa Verde

Ingredients

1 1/2 lb tomatillos
1/2 cup chopped white onion
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon sugar
2 jalapeño or serrano peppers, stemmed, seeded & chopped
Salt to taste

Instructions

1. Remove papery husks from tomatillos and rinse well.

2. Cook the tomatillos. You can either roast them in the oven, or boil them. Roasting will deliver more flavor, but boiling is the most common cooking method.

a. To roast, cut in half and place cut side down on a foil-lined baking sheet. Place under a broiler for about 5-7 minutes to lightly blacken the skin.

b. To boil, place tomatillos in a saucepan, cover with water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove tomatillos with a slotted spoon.

3. Place ingredients in a food processor (or blender) and pulse until all ingredients are finely chopped and mixed. Season to taste with salt. Cool in refrigerator.
Serve as a tortilla dip or sauce for Tex-Mex dishes…Yum!

I will post a tested canning recipe later…which does not use vinegar, and is much better than the recipe in the Ball Blue Book because of that.

HARDENING OFF

Whether you get your plants from starting seeds or buy plants you need to harden off the plants before putting them in the ground. To do this, slowly expose them to direct sunlight for a few hours gradually increasing their time in the sun each day until they can tolerate a full day of sun. Keep a close eye on them, especially when you are first starting the hardening off process. If your plants begin to show signs of wilting move them to shade. Two weeks of hardening off will condition your plants to sun and wind.

Hardening off plants is very important! Many people skip this step and the plants suffer from stress. Stress delays growth, and thus production. Sometimes a non-hardened off plant set out in the garden will actually die.

Removing plants from their nursery pots can stress them as well. Make sure your plants are well hydrated before removing them from their pots, and try to move your plants to their permanent place on an over cast day, or in the evening so it can recover from its transplant stress before it has to face the sun.

YELLOW PEAR HEIRLOOM

YELLOW PEAR HEIRLOOM

~YELLOW PEAR HEIRLOOM~

The Yellow Pear tomato yields an enormous number of yellow pear shaped bite-sized fruits. This extremely old variety makes a vigorous plant, that gets tall quickly. The flavor is mild and sweet. Perfect for summer party hors d’oeuvres. These do have a tendency to split, so be sure to pick them just before they are completely ripe.

Height:
4-9 ft.

Spacing:
4-6 ft.

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Growing Habit:
Indeterminate

Fruit Shape:
Pear

Fruit Size:
Small (grape/cherry varieties)

Days to Maturity:
Mid (69-80 days)

Fruit Colors:
Yellow

Seed Type:
Open-pollinated

Usage:
Fresh, salad

Leaf Type:
Regular Leaf

SUPER BEEFSTEAK

SUPER BEEFSTEAK


~SUPER BEEFSTEAK~

The Super Beefsteak is a prolific, vigorous cultivar that produces delicious meaty red fruits averaging 13 ounces. This is a flavorful, late season tomato.

Height:
6-8 ft.

Spacing:
18-24 in.

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Growing Habit:
Indeterminate

Fruit Shape:
Beefsteak

Fruit Size:
Medium (12 to 14 ounces)

Days to Maturity:
Late (80 days)

Fruit Colors:
Red

Seed Type:
Open-pollinated

Usage:
Fresh, salad
Fresh, slicing

Leaf Type:
Regular Leaf

BURPEE FOURTH OF JULY HYBRID

BURPEE FOURTH OF JULY HYBRID


~BURPEE FOURTH OF JULY HYBRID~

We grew these last year (2011). This is a beautiful, juicy tomato. This early season tomato’s fruit ripens in approximately 49 days after transplant. By the Fourth of July this plant will be loaded with vine-ripened red, tasty 4 ounce tomatoes, and they will continue to produce until frost kills them.

This cultivar would do well in a large container.

Height:
24-36 in.

Spacing:
15-18 in.

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Growing Habit:
Indeterminate

Fruit Shape:
Standard

Fruit Size:
Medium (4 ounce)

Days to Maturity:
Super Early (49 days)

Fruit Colors:
Red

Seed Type:
Hybrid

Usage:
Fresh, salad

Leaf Type:
Regular Leaf

BURPEE BALCONY HYBRID

BURPEE BALCONY HYBRID

~BURPEE BALCONY HYBRID~

We grew these last year, and I was quite impressed. The plant was loaded with beautiful red tennis ball sized fruit early. These plants grew to be about three feet tall and bushy. The Balcony Hybrid is a heavy producer of beautiful, juicy, disease resistant fruit. These can be grown in containers, provided the container is large (at least 3 gal.). Said to be Verticillium, Fusarium, Alternaria and Stem Canker Resistant variety. Very heat tolerant.

This cultivar would do well in a large container.

Height:
24-36 in.

Spacing:
18-24 in.

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Growing Habit:
Determinate

Fruit Shape:
Standard

Fruit Size:
Medium (6 to 7 ounce)

Days to Maturity:
Early (68 days)

Fruit Colors:
Red-orange

Seed Type:
Hybrid

Usage:
Fresh, salad
Fresh, slicing

Leaf Type:
Potato Leaf

WARREN’S YELLOW CHERRY HEIRLOOM

WARREN’S YELLOW CHERRY HEIRLOOM


~WARREN’S YELLOW CHERRY HEIRLOOM~

This plant produces heavy yields of golden yellow cherry tomatoes. They are very sweet and grow in clusters. While it is a crack resistant variety it does have a tendency to split. However, if you pick them early enough, after they turn yellow before they get golden they will ripen in a day or two and you won’t have fruit with split skin. It is said to be a mid season tomato, but last year (2011) these were making ripe tomatoes first…even before my “Early Girls”.

This cultivar would grow well in a container.

Height:
24-36 in.

Spacing:
9-12 in.

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Growing Habit:
Indeterminate

Fruit Shape:
Cherry

Fruit Size:
Small (1 ounce)

Days to Maturity:
Mid (80 days)

Fruit Colors:
Golden Yellow

Seed Type:
Open-Pollinated

Usage:
Fresh, salad

Leaf Type:
Regular Leaf

BURPEE SWEET SNACK HYBRID

BURPEE SWEET SNACK HYBRID

~SWEET SNACK HYBRID COCKTAIL~

This will be the first year that I’ll be growing this tomato. The fruit is described as juicy and sweet. It is said to be great for snacks & salads.

Height:
3-4 ft.

Spacing:
18-24 in.

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Growing Habit:
Indeterminate

Fruit Shape:
Cherry

Fruit Size:
Small (<1 ounce)

Days to Maturity:
Mid (68 days)

Fruit Colors:
Red

Seed Type:
Hybrid

Usage:
Fresh, salad

Leaf Type:
Regular Leaf