Sep 7, 2008

Reaping the bounty of my vegetable garden

I've been sorely neglecting my vegetable garden during the month of August. I have been out to pick tomatoes, green peppers and grean beans, but otherwise I find it difficult to get out and pull weeds or hoe when it's 95 degrees with 80% humidity. The New Englander in me has never adjusted to Ohio's summer weather! On Friday, Brayden and I were out and about (another excursion to watch back hoes, trip to the library, lunch at MaccaDonald's), came home and pulled into the driveway, and what do I see? Two beautiful deer -- standing in the middle of my fenced-in vegetable garden! It was a veritable Deer buffet. Although they raised their heads when Brayden and I walked a little closer to see them, they quickly returned to their munching - on MY vegetables! I shoo'ed them and waved my hands at them and they finally left the garden -- making me realize a 3 foot fence might as well be invisible, seeing how high deer can casually jump over it. I've known for awhile we have deer in our area. One morning a few weeks back I looked out towards the neighbor's back yard and saw two very very large buck, one doe, and two fawns. A gorgeous sight, to be sure, though having two large buck with antlers in the area makes me a bit nervous. You can just barely see one in the photo here. Yesterday I got out to see what the deer damage was in the garden. Tomatoes were OK and I picked three grocery bags full. Cucumbers and plants were gone. Eggplants were 90% OK. Green pepper plants were chewed on, but the green peppers were OK. Green beans are gone, but all I had left on there was what I was drying for planting next season, so I'm OK with that. They really did a number on my herb plants. One of my oregano plants was completely ripped out and another munched on severely. Rosemary plants were trampled, but I think they'll come back. Basil plants were pretty much gone. Yarrow was munched on. So if you happen to run into a very plump deer with pizza breath... Today I'll be using the bags of tomatoes, the green peppers and what was left of the oregano to make some tomato sauce for the freezer. I used to can sauce, but since I've cut back on the amount of tomatoes and other veggies I grow, I think freezer bags will do just as well, since everything will be eaten in a few short months. I'll pick eggplant and use the sauce to make ratatouille for dinner tonight. Yum!

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