Serrano Peppers – Bang for Your Buck

Serrano Peppers

I planted Serrano del Sol peppers from T & T Seeds this year and I was not disappointed. Hanging here are the peppers I had at the end of the season after using many for making sauces and things throughout the late summer. This is the output from six plants. I’m drying them after which I’ll grind them and add them to oil or just keep them as red pepper flakes.

The green ones may or may not turn slowly red as they hang in the window (some will, some won’t). I wish I’d had more time to let them sit on the plant, but zone 3A doesn’t always let me  have what I want.

Drying the Peppers

Jalapeno Peppers

This year I have decided to dry virtually all of my peppers, and I’ve started with the jalapenos. I’ve strung them with embroidery thread about 1 to 1-1/2 inches apart, tying a knot at each stem. They will hang like this for several weeks in my south-facing kitchen window until they are dry and ready to be made into either powdered pepper or infused in oil.

Mmmm.

 

Winners and Losers in 2011 Growing Season

Meet my favorites and those I wouldn’t grow again

I sowed many varieties of both vegetables and flowers in 2011, and I know which I’ll be bringing back in 2012 and which will not be making a return visit to gardeninggrrl’s garden. In addition to direct sowing, this year was the first time in many that I started dozens of my plants indoors under grow lamps. I had some successes and some failures, and I’m happy to share my experience with everyone.

Winners

Beans Straight 'N' Narrow

Green Bean Straight ‘N’ Narrow (T and T)

-high rate of germination

-more beans than I can eat

Pepper Serrano del Sol (T and T)

-10 days to germinate

-high rate of germination

-lots of hot peppers per plant

Pepper Jalapeño Mucho Nacho (T and T)

-10 days to germinate

-high rate of germination

-4-5 hot peppers per plant

Onion Candy Hybrid

Onion Candy Hybrid (T and T)

-8 days to germination

-high rate of germination

-large, flavorful onions

Tomato Tumbler (T and T)

-6 days to germination

-high rate of germination

-dozens of cherry tomatoes

-early tomato, still producing until end of August

-great in containers

Eggplant Hansel

Eggplant Hybrid Hansel (T and T)

-19 days to germination

-high level of germination

-lots of eggplants per plant

-needs a ton of heat and sunny spot

-plants with only moderate heat never flowered

Lettuce Romaine Baby Star (T and T)

-3 days to germination

-high rate of germination

-extremely tasty lettuce

-should have started more a few weeks later

Lettuce Esmeralda (T and T)

-3 days to germination

-high rate of germination

-excellent butter-type lettuce

-lasted long before bolting

Oriental Greens Mix

Oriental Greens Mix (Harmonic Herbs)

-excellent mix of early greens

-bolt quickly

Leaf Lettuce Mesclun Mix (T and T)

-excellent mix of early greens

Carrot Nantes Scarlet Coreless (Seed Centre)

-excellent rate of germination

-very sweet carrot

Petunia Shock Wave Denim

Petunia Shock Wave Denim (T and T)

-9 days to germination

-low level of germination

-extremely prolific flowering plant

-excellent in containers or beds

Sweet Basil (T and T)

-8 days to germination

-low level of germination

-prolific production once established

Cosmos Double Click

Cosmos Double Click (T and T)

-moderate level of germination

-huge plants with tons of blossoms

-lasts for almost two months

Viper’s Bugloss (Bedrock Seeds)

-11 days to germination

-high rate of germination

-lovely early flowers

Morning Glory Carnevale (T and T)

-moderate germination

-prolific flowers for over a month

Impatiens Super Elfin Blend

Impatiens Super Elfin Blend (T and T)

-10 days to germination

-moderate level of germination

-slow to develop

-lovely once established

Dahlia Unwins Dwarf Hybrid

Dahlia Unwins Dwarf Hybrid (T and T)

-6 days to germination

-moderate rate of germination

-lovely flowers for well over a month

Peas Sugar snap (McKenzie)

-high number of pods per plant

Cucumber Early Russian (McKenzie)

-low level of germination

-excellent production

Losers

Cucumber Early Mincu (Pike)

-low level of germination

-low production of cucumbers

Tomato Prairie Pride (T and T)

-11 days to germination

-high rate germination

-poor number of tomatoes per plant

Tomato Centennial Rocket (T and T)

-no germination on two attempts

Tomato Charlie’s Red Staker (T and T)

-8 days to germination

-high rate of germination

-poor number of tomatoes per plant

Swiss Chard Bright Lights (McKenzie)

-low level of germination

Spinach Catalina (T and T)

-low level of germination

-quick to bolt

Spinach Razzle Dazzle (T and T)

-low level of germination

-quick to bolt

Onion Evergreen Bunching (Pike)

-low level of germination

Sweet Pea Royal Family Mixed (McKenzie)

-low level of germination

-slow to germinate

Portulaca Sundial Mix (T and T)

-no germination

Coleus Wizard Mix (T and T)

-low germination

-no significant development of plants

Neutral

Eggplant Asian Ping Tung Long (McKenzie)

-16 days to germination

-high rate of germination

-none flowered due to inappropriate growing conditions

Beet Deep Cylinder (T and T)

-good germination

-small beets, uneven growth

Parsley Champion Moss Curled (McKenzie)

-16 days to germination

-low level mod germination

-prolific parsley once established

Peas Lincoln Homesteader (McKenzie)

-low number of pods per plant

-slow to germinate

Bean Pole Scarlet Runner (McKenzie)

-high level of germination

-non-edible beans (although Lucy ate some)

Want to Know More About Sheet Mulching?

Workshop – Sheet Mulching Magic!
Early Bird registration until September 15.
Date: Saturday, October 15, 2011
Time: 9:30 am to approx. 3:00 pm
Location: Edmonton, address will be e-mailed after registration
Cost: $45 Early Bird, $55 after September 15.
Instructor: Claudia Bolli of Wildgreen Garden Consulting
Host Garden: Gardeninggrrl’s 
Learn how to convert a piece of lawn into a new growing space for vegetables, fruit trees, shrubs or perennials – without breaking your back or divorcing your partner! This workshop will explore the benefits and techniques of sheet mulching to create new growing beds. The presentation will include information on soil, compost, weeds, and touch on related permaculture principles.
 
After the presentation and lunch, we’ll build a new garden bed in my yard. It will be a great way to learn, work together and socialize!
 
Bring a mug for coffee/tea, your own lunch, warm clothes, and shovel and gloves to participate in the hands-on portion of the workshop.
Register by visiting www.wildgreen.ca and go to “Workshops”. Space is limited and pre-registration is required.