Home & Garden

St. Joseph Healthcare to Hold Canning and Freezing Demo

St. Joseph Healthcare will be holding a canning and freezing demonstration on August 29, 2012 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at 106 Congress St. in Bangor.

The St. Joseph Mission Outreach Committee is sponsoring this program as part of its efforts to support food security. The demonstration will include an informative session on saving excess fruits and vegetables by using freezing and canning methods.   A Food Preservation Program Aide from the University of Maine Cooperative Extension will provide the 2-hour demonstration. 

Registration is limited to 15 people.  Those in attendance will have a chance to get some hands-on experience in making blueberry jam.

If you are interested in registering for this program please call the St. Joseph Public Relations office at 907-1720.

The program is being offered free of charge to participants as part of the St. Joseph Mission Outreach activities as a community benefit program. 

University of Maine offering "The Edible Landscape"

University of Maine offering "The Edible Landscape"

University of Maine Cooperative Extension has announced that The Edible Landscape will be held on August 21 at Rogers Farm, Bennoch Road, Stillwater at 6pm.  Many landscape plants are edible ... but how many burdock roots and chokecherries will you really eat? Dr. Lois Berg Stack, UMaine Cooperative Extension Ornamental Specialist, will talk about edible landscapes for real gardeners: plants that add beauty to the landscape and provide food for the table; and how to balance food, beauty and labor in the context of your gardening and cooking activities. This program is free and no registration is required.  Rain or shine.  For more information or to request special accommodations please call Kate Garland at 207-942-7396 or within Maine at 1-800-287-1485. UMaine Extension programs are open and accessible to all in accordance with program goals.

Bean Harvest.

Bean Harvest.

After the disaster of the previous blight we experienced we've had a successful harvest of the the beans in the other row that survived!  We froze about 20 cups of grean beans.  We blanched them in boiling water for 3 minutes and then cooled them in an ice water bath before packing.  This brief cooking period slows down the enzymatic actions that start working as soon as you pick the beans.  If left unchecked these enzymes will deteriorate the flavor and color of the end product.

Bean blight! Eradicating failed crops.

Bean blight!  Eradicating failed crops.

Tragedy!  Our entire row of Vermont Cranberry beans have picked up some sort of disease!  All the pods have black spots on them.  We've never had a crop failure like this one.  It's just so heartbreaking but what must be done is all these plants have to be pulled up and hauled away.  There's no other way around it.  We also have to do this so that no other plants get the same disease especially other green beans.  In fact we have another variety of green been in the garden adjacent to this one so it is especially important to get these diseased plants out as quick as possible.  This is another reason why it's a good thing to diversify where you plant your vegetables.  If you're going to plant two different varieties of say tomatoes it may be a good idea to separate them a bit.  That way if one gets a disease the other may have a better chance for survival.

Making Hay - Part 3

Making Hay - Part 3

I took the hay out of the trailer and put it in a big pile called a "rick".  With a little care this thing could be made water proof but for now I'm just going to cover it with a tarp.  The quantity was quite a lot more than I expected but I'll make use of it!

Bees - Part 4

Bees - Part 4

I've put the honey super and screened bottom board on my hive!  The upper deep hive body had a lot of honey production going on in it and the lower deep body had lots of good looking brood so I think the hive is doing pretty well!

Bees - Part 3

Bees - Part 3

I'm adding more equipment to my hive!  A honey super, a screened bottom board and a queen excluder.  What's that?  Watch the video!