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My Garden 2016: Tomato Time!!!

01. September 2016

I'll admit it, I don't think I'm a very good gardener. Or perhaps I just don't have luck with growing certain veggies. I'm usually a pro at growing dill weed, green beans, lettuce, swiss chard, & various unwanted weeds. I've had on and off luck with carrots, potatoes, and tomatoes.

 This is the first batch of tomatoes from my garden. Ooohhh, pretty.

Heirloom tomatoes CanningCrafts

Heirloom tomatoes CanningCrafts


This year my tomatoes were off to a great start. Granted, there was a mixup at the greenhouse, and I didn't get the varieties I thought I was going to get. But I harvested enough to put up 8 quarts of tomatoes. That probably sounds skimpy to someone like my mom. She's used to preserving 80 quarts in a day. Show off.

Tomatoes CanningCrafts

Tomatoes CanningCrafts


My garden doesn't look so hot now. What happened? I believe this has been the worst year for my green beans. I harvested two nice batches, then they started to get eaten up. I've never had issues with bugs before this year. I imagine the beans did so terrible because I bragged about how well they were doing in a previous blog post. About half of my tomatoes have withered away. The broccoli was laughable. And the swiss chard is starting to look more like swiss cheese.

 Garden tomatoes CanningCrafts


And now our good friend Hermie the Groundhog has made a triumphant return. So far he's nabbed a handful of tomatoes and plenty of apples. I decided to turn my small electric garden fence back on to help deter him. The fence may or may not work. While I do get the occasional half eaten tomato, I wonder how much worse it could be without the fence.

Groundhog CanningCrafts

Years ago we had a groundhog terrorize our garden. We named him Hermie. He was a fat, fearless varmint who lived under our front porch. He made himself at home, that's for sure. He really dug our patio furniture. He adored chewing on the porch railing. And he sure did LOVE our tomatoes. And the carrots. And the apples. We actually witnessed him reach up to pick apples right off our tree.

Hermie the Groundhog CanningCrafts

Here's Hermie the Groundhog surveying his property...err, everything he wants to eat.

Hermie the Groundhog CanningCrafts

I don't like the way he's leering at my tomatoes.

Hermie the Groundhog CanningCrafts

Now the latest visitor is NOT the original Hermie the Groundhog. I'm pretty sure my neighbor "took care of" Hermie. This groundhog is probably 1/4 the size of the previous one. But we still call him Hermie because we like the name. Much to my husband's despair, we never tried to eradicate Hermie from our yard. WHY? Well, I have a soft spot for groundhogs. They are SOOOOOO cute. Just look at that face!

YES, this is the original Hermie the Groundhog posing for our Groundhog canning labels. Thanks a million Hermie. Your payment? Oh, sure, go ahead and help yourself to anything in our garden ;)

groundhog canning label


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Do you have any fun gardening pest stories? Ever been terrorized by a raccoon or eaten out of your garden by a groundhog? We'd love to hear about it. Let us know in the comments below!

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