Gardening: My Tomatoe and Pepper Progress

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crazyjake19

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Not exactly tomatoes, but I grew Ground Cherries (Aunt Molly's variety) for the first time this year and have harvested a bunch so far. They're similar to a tomatillo, but smaller and sweeter with a bit of a mango/pineapple flavor to them. Trying to decide what to make with them..possible either a jam or salsa, or maybe incorporate some into a fermented hot sauce with my peppers.
 

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Miller4

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First time growing “real deal” variety hot peppers. Super happy with them and they will definitely be a staple from now on. They don’t have overpowering heat and have great flavor, and big! Now to figure out what to do with them. Been putting them on pizza and just did a batch of spicy bread and butter pickles.
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I've been thinking about getting back into gardening, I moved so I have a few unknowns here, 2 acers with 3 miniature apple trees and 2 peach trees but I have about 20 trees total and all of the 4 pine trees and 2 large 10 feet tall evergreen bushes are all dying, I'm a little hesitant it could be blight or tree beetles. Before I start back, I need to be sure it’s not spreading, any ideas?
 

bkboiler

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My new nextdoor neighbor is growing ghost peppers as well as habanero, scotch bonnet and jalapenos.

I share homebrew with him, looking forward to grilling wings in a while after the hot sauce is ready... 🍻☺
 

Cammanron

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I've been thinking about getting back into gardening, I moved so I have a few unknowns here, 2 acers with 3 miniature apple trees and 2 peach trees but I have about 20 trees total and all of the 4 pine trees and 2 large 10 feet tall evergreen bushes are all dying, I'm a little hesitant it could be blight or tree beetles. Before I start back, I need to be sure it’s not spreading, any ideas?
Could be that they are getting too much water
 

Evilgrin

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Today i pickled 2qts of Golden Greek peppers. 50/50 brine and a hint of Tuscan spend blend. In a week or two they will look just like the store bought.
 

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What's your recipe out of interest?
wouldn't mind trying another recipe
 

Staestc

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Probably been discussed here a hundred times before, but I am trying to get a jump on next years plantings and would like to start from seeds. (as opposed to this year where I just threw 3 plants in the ground at the last minute)

Is there a consensus of seed companies that are preferred by the folks here? I am located in the US (duh). I understand that there is some new requirement on seeds shipped from overseas that requires some sort of certification or risk confiscation coming into the US. Anybody experienced that?

Thanks,
 

Evilgrin

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Baker Creek aka rareseeds.com
Refining Fire Chiles aka superhotchiles.com
Numex Chile Pepper Institute Seeds
White Hot Peppers has lots of super hots and a great reputation
 

Deadalus

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Probably been discussed here a hundred times before, but I am trying to get a jump on next years plantings and would like to start from seeds. (as opposed to this year where I just threw 3 plants in the ground at the last minute)

Is there a consensus of seed companies that are preferred by the folks here? I am located in the US (duh). I understand that there is some new requirement on seeds shipped from overseas that requires some sort of certification or risk confiscation coming into the US. Anybody experienced that?

Thanks,
I had very good germination with all the seeds I planted from Park Seeds this year. As far as peppers, I only had one pack from there as I received a seed kit as a gift. Those started out well but their company price is ridiculous.
 

Deadalus

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First small harvest of san marzanos. Not exactly earth shattering :rolleyes: Does anyone have good recommendations for next year for tomatoes that grow well outside at northern latitudes? Was thinking of sub arctic plenty.View attachment 741224
I grew these this year too. Mine are just turning red. Very productive, only somewhat disease resistant, but a very long to harvest growth period. I think 90+ days, so start early! I have Costoluto tomatoes, good producers, well regarded for sauce, ripening first this year. Ugly and gnarly looking though.
 

Staestc

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Baker Creek aka rareseeds.com
Refining Fire Chiles aka superhotchiles.com
Numex Chile Pepper Institute Seeds
White Hot Peppers has lots of super hots and a great reputation
I had very good germination with all the seeds I planted from Park Seeds this year. As far as peppers, I only had one pack from there as I received a seed kit as a gift. Those started out well but their company price is ridiculous.
Thanks to both of you. Much appreciated. White Hot is one I have not heard of at all, and Park is one I have not looked at for a long time. Refining Fire I just saw yesterday, along with Numex.
 

Staestc

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Wow, White Hot Peppers is a cool site, and one of the few I have seen that lists if the seeds were isolated or not, and how stable they may be. Of course I just learned what that means a few days ago, so I may have missed that info on other sites before that.
 

Evilgrin

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Just a FYI, ive ordered from Rareseeds numerous times and everything grew true. Last year i got Death Spiral seeds. They were spot on. I only had 1 disappointment from Numex. Last year i got the Orange Spice jalapeno. They were CRAZY hot even for a serrano. So this year i tried Jalamundo. Well they have hardly any heat. I was hoping for a large jalapeno with average to a little above average heat.

Everything i ordered from Refining Fire Chiles grew true. Even a hard pepper to find called Antep Aci Dolma. Fords was constantly out and it was a critical pepper for my grow this year. Fords finally came thru so i grew both from seeds. Slightly different shape but all had that wonderful sweet heat flavor.

If you order from Numex you must try the Suave Red. Its a heatless habanero. Mine cranked out really nice sized pods. Much nicer than any aji dulce type ive tried yet. They have just a hint of heat. They look just like a hab and smell like they will melt your face but they are semi sweet and very mild.
 
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Evilgrin

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What's your recipe out of interest?
wouldn't mind trying another recipe
This is a low sodium version. You will need about 3-4 times the salt for regular.

I had to double this for my 2qt jar. I had some brine left over.
1 Cup Vinegar (rice)
1 Cup Water
1 Teaspoon canning salt
1/2 Teaspoon Tuscan Seasoning (no salt added)
Heat all the above and strain. Inject into peppers when it cools a little.

1 Teaspoon minced garlic (added to bottom of jar)

Place brine filled peppers in the jar
Cover with semi hot brine and seal.
Place in the fridge for a couple weeks as soon as its cooled to room temp


I have a brine injector set. 30ml syringe with a 8gauge needle. You can buy both on Amazon. Its a bit tedious but its a easy way to make sure the peppers get full of brine right away. Make a hole in one side. Inject brine in the other. Stop when brine squirts out of the first hole.
 
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Oldskewl

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I started my entire garden from seeds this year and ordered them all from Baker Creek. Every variety germanated. I need to start a couple weeks earlier though. I started the seeds in early March but especially the pepper plant were very slow to produce. I've got tons of peppers at the moment. Looking for ideas of what to do with them all. I have already made 2 kinds of sauce, dehydrated some & made salsa. Thinking about some relish.
 

Deadalus

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I started my entire garden from seeds this year and ordered them all from Baker Creek. Every variety germanated. I need to start a couple weeks earlier though. I started the seeds in early March but especially the pepper plant were very slow to produce. I've got tons of peppers at the moment. Looking for ideas of what to do with them all. I have already made 2 kinds of sauce, dehydrated some & made salsa. Thinking about some relish.
I was trying to remember the name of that company. My wife bought the catalog and it is awesome but when I went to order there was some sort of delay I think due to Covid. They have a lot of depth in the varieties available. I complained when she bought it but it is a very nice catalog!
 

Evilgrin

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If you like cukes all season...Try the West India Burr Gherkins at Baker Creek. Pick them when they are no larger than a lemon. They dont look much like a cuke but taste nearly the same. Mine do great all season with virtually no bug damage or disease issues. They make great dill chips for burgers.

All they want is plenty of water and lots of sun/heat. Minimal nutrients.
 

Staestc

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If you order from Numex you must try the Suave Red. Its a heatless habanero. Mine cranked out really nice sized pods. Much nicer than any aji dulce type ive tried yet. They have just a hint of heat. They look just like a hab and smell like they will melt your face but they are semi sweet and very mild.
Can't wait to try these!

IMG_7031.jpg
 

Staestc

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If you like cukes all season...Try the West India Burr Gherkins at Baker Creek. Pick them when they are no larger than a lemon. They dont look much like a cuke but taste nearly the same. Mine do great all season with virtually no bug damage or disease issues. They make great dill chips for burgers.

All they want is plenty of water and lots of sun/heat. Minimal nutrients.
Those are pretty cool looking!
 

Abrayton

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First 2021 batch of future hot sauce fermenting. Peppers did not do well this year. Some plants/varieties didn’t produce a single pepper. 🤔
 

Oldskewl

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I have an abundant amount of habaneros and thai peppers. Any ideas for using them up? I've made 2 hot sauces, salsa, dehydrated some, and gave some away. I still have a bunch!
 

Staestc

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I have an abundant amount of habaneros and thai peppers. Any ideas for using them up? I've made 2 hot sauces, salsa, dehydrated some, and gave some away. I still have a bunch!
I understand. I put in just three plants late in the season and I cannot keep up with the Habs and Serranos. I have been fermenting hot sauce all summer. I think I am just going to pickle them this time or just make a non-fermented hot sauce of some kind. It's been hard to keep up!
 

Staestc

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Planning on building big raised garden this winter. More to come, but I'm pretty excited. Meant to start a year ago, but other projects got in the way. Hope to contribute here again soon, been a couple of years since I great anything I could eat :(
Like minds :) I am planning some raised beds for next year too, though probably several smaller ones rather than a big garden. Interested in what you are planning if you will share when you get a chance.
 
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Like minds :) I am planning some raised beds for next year too, though probably several smaller ones rather than a big garden. Interested in what you are planning if you will share when you get a chance.
I'll definitely share. Gonna build several 4x8 beds. That's the plan anyway. Hope to be building them over the holidays, then get seeds going inside and planted early spring.
 

applescrap

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The self watering gardens are still doing well, those dang aphids. But still lots of peppers and tomatos and herbs. It was a good year. Went with homer depot plants, meh. This is that Korean bbq flank steak from costco, hate to admit wasnt bad. But I love to grab stuff from garden and just toss on grill. Then after grilling I evoo and salt. Could before but that would kill laziness factor. Those grilled jalopenos with steak was so good. Also super duper loving the onions, probably my favorite thing ever grown.
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Deadalus

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I'll definitely share. Gonna build several 4x8 beds. That's the plan anyway. Hope to be building them over the holidays, then get seeds going inside and planted early spring.
I built raised beds in my garden. I used 1x6 treated boards, mostly 16 footers, my beds are 4x20. I had 6 beds (now 6.5) to build, so I went the 1" (nominal) because the cost was good. I recommend not doing that if you considered it and use 2" boards. Perhaps on an 8 ft section though they may not get wavy like mine did if you do use 1". The 2" sized beds I have seen are always sturdier looking.

This is the absolute worst one and it is the 1/2 bed on the steepest part as well and the deepest too. It needs another post. I used mainly 2x4 posts but 4x4 here, occasionally staked to rebar if I didn't cut them deep enough. I had a lot of scrap pieces from building my fence and they were sometimes too short. I also thought I could get away with not sinking some on the interior of the bed but I ended up having to go back and put some rebar in.

I had just dressed this bed with some nice compost out of one of my tumblers.
 

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I built raised beds in my garden. I used 1x6 treated boards, mostly 16 footers, my beds are 4x20. I had 6 beds (now 6.5) to build, so I went the 1" (nominal) because the cost was good. I recommend not doing that if you considered it and use 2" boards. Perhaps on an 8 ft section though they may not get wavy like mine did if you do use 1". The 2" sized beds I have seen are always sturdier looking.

This is the absolute worst one and it is the 1/2 bed on the steepest part as well and the deepest too. It needs another post. I used mainly 2x4 posts but 4x4 here, occasionally staked to rebar if I didn't cut them deep enough. I had a lot of scrap pieces from building my fence and they were sometimes too short. I also thought I could get away with not sinking some on the interior of the bed but I ended up having to go back and put some rebar in.

I had just dressed this bed with some nice compost out of one of my tumblers.
Got it. Thanks.
 

Miller4

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Any salsa tips? Much appreciated!
We do a very simple recipe if you are set up to pressure can. We like it because it is basically our fresh salsa recipe but then pressure canned, so no peeling the tomatoes first and not a lot of added vinegar like most of the water bath recipes. If you’d like I can dig up our basic recipe and then you can tweak with what you have on hand.
 

Hanglow

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I'm still picking peppers although it's gone autumnal now. Pulled all tomato plants. Planted winter salads in their place.

Also planted garlic in the garden, 90 cloves of hardneck and about 50 softnecks.
 

z-bob

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Any salsa tips? Much appreciated!
I have a wonderful salsa recipe that I got from the USDA. It doesn't need a pressure canner. Lemme see if I've posted it here already; if so I will link to it, if not I will post it. It takes 5 pounds of tomatoes, 2 pounds of peppers, and 1 pound of onions; usually makes a little over 8 pints.

I wasn't going to plant any peppers or tomatoes this year, kind of a crop rotation thing to get some disease problems under control. But a lady from church gave me a tomato plant and I couldn't say no. I planted it in the middle of the backyard in a hole the dog dug in the lawn, far away from the garden. I've picked dozens of big slicing tomatoes off, and it's still going strong. I've made 2 batches of the salsa (I think I have a picture of the first batch) and just finished peeling and freezing 2 quarts of chopped tomatoes to use for soup in a few weeks.


salsa.jpg
 
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z-bob

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Here's the recipe. Because I was using slicing tomatoes the first batch is a little thin, so I added about 2 tablespoons of canned tomato paste to the second batch and it helped. Use freshly-ground black pepper if you have it; it makes a difference, and I generally use a little more than a 1/2 tsp.

Chile Salsa
(from USDA bulletin 539) yield: 6 to 8 pints

5 pounds tomatoes
2 pounds chile peppers
1 pound onions, chopped
1 cup vinegar (5%)*
3 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper

Roast and peel peppers if they have tough skins (not necessary for jalapeños or serranos), remove seeds and stems, chop. Scald and peel tomatoes; chop. Combine all ingredients in large saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer 10 minutes. Ladle into pint jars, leave 1/2 inch headspace. Adjust lids and process in boiling water bath for 15 minutes.

*Notes: I generally use jalapeños, seeds and all, and I find that ½ cup bottled lemon juice plus ½ cup white vinegar tastes better than using all vinegar (or all lemon juice.)
 

Oldskewl

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Limes can be more acidic than lemons. Many salsas have lime juice as part of the recipe. Just my 2 cents.

I actually water bath can my salsa recipe using lime juice to up the acidity
 
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