Archive for July, 2009


July 29, 2009 Leave a comment
Tomatillos - "Mexican Husk Tomatoes"

Tomatillos - "Mexican Husk Tomatoes"


 Tomatillos are an odd plant. First off, they are called “Mexican Husk Tomatoes”, although they aren’t tomatoes. The fruit itself it surronded with a papery husk, which splits when the fruit is ready to eat. It has been described as citrus like, although I personally don’t like the taste raw. 

There is one very good reason to grow this plant: They are exceptionally blight resistant. I had hundreds of tomato plants affected by the late blight this year, and these Tomatillos seem completely unaffected.  I will grow them again next year, as some members of my family members enjoy the  peculiar flavor. 

Here’s a recipe suggested by a friend. Sounds Yummy ! 

Barbara Zowada’s Green Chili
Brown in hot oil in a Dutch oven:
3 lbs. boneless Pork cut into 1” cubes
2 large Onions diced
2 cloves Garlic minced
3 cups Chicken Broth
28 ounce can Tomatillos with liquid (or 3 cups dice fresh)
8 ounce can chopped Green Chilies
¼ teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1 Tablespoon Oregano
1 teaspoon ground Cumin
1 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Water (2 if using fresh tomatillos)
1 teaspoon Chili Powder
Cover and simmer for 4 hours.
Thicken with a slurry of 2-4 Tablespoons of flour in a small amount of water, bring to a boil.


Fried Green Tomatoes Anyone ?

July 26, 2009 Leave a comment
Fried Green Tomatoes anyone ?

Fried Green Tomatoes anyone ?

This is a backpost, and I’ve had some months to learn new skills. This particular tomato plant has a few suckers that should be cut off. Suckers are a second smaller branch growing out where two branches originate. I guess when you cut these suckers off, it allows more of the plants nutrients to flow to the original branch, thus reducing competition.  The original branch will then grow better, and hopefully, set healtheir tomatoes in a shorter amount of time. 

If you have the ability, these suckers could be placed in a rooting solution, and cloned into additional plants. In my area of the world, this would not work out well, as our growing season is too short for direct seeded tomatoes, nevermind waiting for a clone to take root.

Categories: Tomatoes & Peppers

Greenhouse Update

July 26, 2009 1 comment
Greenhouse Taking Shape

Greenhouse Taking Shape

I’ve been working very hard on my greenhouse since my post about leveling the foundation. To help save money, I’m building with non-standard construction materials. I’ve built the majority of the frame-work out of landscape timbers, $2.22 at Home Depot when I bought them. They come treated for the weather, and require a bit of extra work to use.  Two sides of the timbers are flat, and two sides are rounded, so when needed, I had to cut the rounded part. 

I’ve also used a few pieces of rought cut lumber from Groner’s Lumber and Logging (814-498-2147). These are mostly for supports when landscape timbers would be very impracticle.

The basic idea behind building this frame was to build three sets of “trusses”, and then connect them together. So there is basically the front wall, a middle wall, and a back wall. I then built a large box under the floor, and one towards the roof. These keep the greenhouse from falling down, and provide strenght from front to back.  I’ve learned this construction tech. partly from watching Extreme Engineering, and partly from helping with Davies Barn.

The greenhouse should be roughly 14 X 16 FT when finished, I figure I can put 1,000 seedlings on shelves one layer deep, which should leave plenty of extra room. Someday, maybe this building will be where I spend my working hours ; )

Now, I just need to figure out how I’m going to cover this thing, and what to build the shelves out of….

I’d like to thank everyone that helped out with this project, as it means a great deal to me.  So….. Thanks ! = )