Jul. 12th, 2012

jaunthie: (rose colander)
It's been a very busy spring (as you might have guessed from the dearth of posting here). It's also been a somewhat unusual one, weather-wise. We had our usual 'teaser' of "look! summer is coming!" weather in mid-May, followed by a very wet and cool six weeks. Wet and cool in June isn't that unusual - the joke around here is that summer doesn't officially arrive until sometime in July - but this was breaking-records levels of moisture. Which is great in terms of helping stave off fire danger, but made my usual spring gardening much more of a challenge. Add on to that almost no time to actually go out and garden, and you can guess what state my garden beds are in.

One side effect of my schedule and the weather is that my rose bushes got out of sync. My primary-jam rose bloomed before almost any of the others, and at a point when I literally didn't have time to make jam. Plus I still have some left over from last year. The dilemna became clear: to jam, or not to jam? After all, it's not like I can run down to the store and buy more rose jam if I do run out. On the other hand, I don't really *need* rose jam.

After much dithering and hair-pulling, I caught a break in timing. I managed to find one afternoon where the stars aligned, and I made a batch of rose jam. Unlike most years, the roses for this batch were almost all pink, not the dark-red ones I normally use. I also rushed the processing of the petals more than usual, as I really was scraping minutes out of the day to do this. Hopefully the effort will prove worthwhile. I have no idea how this batch turned out, and won't until I open the first jar. That won't be until after I finish last year's jars, so we'll see. But jam did occur, so certain folks (looking at you, [livejournal.com profile] ryalin1) can fail to panic at the thought of no jam-laden care-packages. ;-)

The weather has finally settled into a more usual pattern, and my schedule has also moved into a more sane state, so hopefully I'll be able to get back to proper gardening soon. The peas are coming along nicely, most of the beans are up and showing progress, and it's been a bumper year for poppies, nigella, and volunteer potato starts. No idea if the cucumbers or squash will come to anything, though; it's been so cool and wet for so long, they're all just tiny little things. And I suspect that the runner beans I planted along the trellis are an utter failure. I planted a second row last week, but between the weather and the dang cats using that bed as one of their favorite digging places, I'm not holding out much hope. Pity, as I really wanted to have yard-long beans this year!
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