Grand totals

I’m still getting a few ripe cherry tomatoes but not bothering to weigh them now. The rest of the spring/summer harvest is finished, so I’ve finally totted up my yields (to the nearest 100g).

  • Tomatoes  41.9 kg
  • Potatoes  14.7 kg
  • Zucchini  13.1 kg
  • Apples  19.2 kg
  • Beans  8.7 kg
  • Cucumbers  5.7 kg
  • Plums  7.4 kg
  • Nectarines 1.7 kg
  • Pears 2.0 kg
  • Carrots  1.9 kg

That’s not too bad!

Most of the cherry tomatoes have been sun-dried. Here’s what 5 kg of dried tomatoes looks like:

I’ll use these through the winter in soups, casseroles and rice & pasta dishes; or even just as plain nibbles.

I’ve eaten the last of the fresh tomatoes; no more now till next summer. I refuse to buy the tasteless, hard-skinned supermarket offerings. There are 3 boxes of frozen ones in the freezer, so all is not lost. Plenty to cook with over winter.

I netted the Red Delicious apple this year and had no trouble with parrots so I was really pleased with the yield. I’ve stored most of them, individually wrapped, in a box in the coolest part of the house. I’m told they’ll last for months like this.

The pears were another story. I netted the 2 trees and looked like getting a good crop. The net didn’t go right to the ground, because I’ve never had any trouble with possums in the past, only parrots. I picked a few, experimentally, to see if they’d ripen inside (which they did, later), then got caught up with other things and didn’t go near the trees for a couple of days. In that time, possums (I assume, unless rabbits can climb trees), helped themselves to all that were left. Damn! Next time the net will have to go right to the ground.

The nectarine yield was low because most of the flowers didn’t set fruit. I didn’t lose any to possums or parrots. I didn’t net the tree because I could see the fruit set was poor. Was it lack of bees at the crucial time? Don’t know.

The only disappointment was pumpkins. They just didn’t grow and I didn’t get a single one. But my neighbour had a monster of a vine so we’re swapping apples for pumpkins.

All in all, I learned quite a bit over the summer growing season, but that will have to be the subject of another post.

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6 Responses to “Grand totals”

  1. simply.belinda Says:

    Hi,
    Talking to people up here the fruit set on stone fruit this year was generally pretty poor. My personal opinion is that the very cool, very wet start to the season had the bees a lot less active than they normally would be at that time of year.

    Kind Regards
    Belinda

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    • foodnstuff Says:

      Hi Belinda,

      Thanks, that’s interesting. Nice to know I didn’t do anything wrong! One problem I can see with wet weather is that the rain probably washes away a lot of the pollen before the bees even get to it. Must start making general notes on weather conditions a regular part of the whole food-growing exercise.

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  2. dancingwithfrogs Says:

    I think I’ll dehydrate the cherry tomatoes I have sitting in the fridge. I’ve still got lots of the heritage tomatoes green on the plants, so I’m delaying pulling out the plants until they ripen.

    I went to Bunnings yesterday and wandered around looking for wicking box stuff. Came home without anything. It was all a bit hard. I have to have a definite list in my hand next time.

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    • foodnstuff Says:

      Hi Frogdancer,

      It’s drizzling rain today and I’ve got a tray drying in the oven. I don’t leave them in there with the oven on, just put it on low to heat up then put them in & turn it off. With my memory, leaving it on would be a recipe for disaster.

      Sorry you couldn’t find what you needed at Bunnings. I went there myself this morning and finally found the large pot I wanted for another wicking tub. They’ve been out of stock for weeks. These are for deeper-rooted things like tomatoes. The tubs are black plastic, 50 cm diameter and 39 cm deep. Because they have the standard drainage holes in the bottom, you’ll need a circle of heavy-duty plastic pushed into the bottom to form the water reservoir. Aim to have it come a bit under a third the way up the sides.

      (Thinks: maybe I should do a proper post on how I put these things together)

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  3. Jason Dingley Says:

    Your tomato season lasted well. For me it ended in February, good harvest though. Do I understand it correctly that you just freeze your tomatoes whole and raw?

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    • foodnstuff Says:

      Hi Jason,

      Yes, that’s right. I just put them in a plastic box or freezer bag. They clack together like cricket balls when they’re frozen. I only use them for cooking; I don’t bother to peel them just defrost and cook. Soup, casseroles, pasta sauce; that sort of thing. More flavour than the tasteless ones for sale over winter.

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