Note: The photo gallery at the top is a slideshow, click on it to see the photos of fruits and blue moon that accompany this article.
Last night (July 30), we had a blue moon. The rare (hence the expression "once in a blue moon") second full moon in a month is referred to as a full moon. It was clear and bright and gorgeous. The puppies didn't sleep a wink, I bet, judging from the sounds of their going in and out of their door to the porch through the night.
As many of you may have heard, we have had hot and dry spring and summer. Imagine! The blackberries were ripe in mid July instead of late August. We have an annual Blackberry Fair here on Denman Island, the first weekend of September. By then all the blackberries will have been gone! What are we going to do?
The figs have been ripe since late June. We're talking a veritable heatwave here, with the corresponding forest fires throughout BC (scary!) and people's wells running dry (many neighbors have had their wells run dry; our well is doing pretty great this year, plus we have 5 2,500-gallon cisterns as backup just in case the well runs dry. Having a big garden, greenhouse, orchard, plus many rescued pet animals, we do need to think ahead on water.
So the cucumbers were a miss for us this season. But the tomatoes, peppers, and basil are in their full glory. The salads are always good (we need a kilogram of greens per person per day everyday, so we take growing of greens very seriously) but this year is the most challenging ever since we started homesteading 20 years ago. Wow! The heat is so intense we have had to put shade cloths over our greens. And keep them as cool and hydrated as we can.
The pomegranate fruits are forming. And the jujubes. Yay! We love exotic fruits from our many articles on exotic fruit trees for temperate region over at the old Rawganique.com Homesteading Blog, which is now being continued here at homestadingmatters.com, a Rawganique Blog. We have a better setup now, so it's less work to post more regularly as events happen in the garden and beyond.
And the figs are totally amazing. Green figs are our favorites, of course, all the Italian honey kinds. :)
And the mulberries! They are the very best fruits to grow for the average gardener. They establish quickly with minimal fuss and yield juicy ultra-high antioxidant berries 4-5 months a year on the ever-bearing varieties. Wow, sweet and tangy. Amazing.
And not to forget the grapes, which are going all out this year, ready to ripen anytime now. We have stopped pruning grapes and culling fruits for lack of time. And we have found that hot years such as this, the grapes are just as big and sweet. So one ancient vine that's almost 100 years old is now covering our mini meditation hut in leaves and 100 bunches of grapes. Yumm!!!
The garlic has been braided, though a bit late. Plus we didn't have time to chop off the scapes so some heads are small. Oh well.
The plums are super sweet and juicy this year. And the apples are looking good for an early fall harvest.