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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Holy Peppers, Pirate Man

Tortuga Thursday
In 2012, on the plains of Northern Arizona, two families joined forces and began the trials and tribulations of building a small family farm with nothing in the bank but love.

Rows of jalapenos
It's a lush year on Tortuga Flats. Although we have a well and the crops get as much water as they need, rain still trumps irrigation for beefing up the plants. The monsoons continue. I've given up on all but the weeds crowding the tuber veggies like onions and potatoes. We can't keep up and harvest and pickle too.

We grow several varieties of peppers for ourselves and for the Pirate Pickles and Relish. In every jar of pickles there is at least one
Pretty jalapenos
jalapeno. In the Kraken's breath there are jalapenos and cayenne. In our relish you'll also find bells, too. The pepper plants are so thick and lush this year, it's nearly impossible to walk between the rows.

Edamame just before harvest
We grew edamame for the first time. Edamame are immature soy beans. I LOVE them. I've been buying frozen, organic, non-GMO from Costco. Although soy is supposedly very good for you, most of the soy in the U.S. is GMO and sprayed with herbicides. And the soy you find in foods is extracted with bad stuff too. It's a touchy crop to harvest. There's a five day window to harvest the whole plant. I think we made it.

At this moment, the Pirate Pickle crowdfunder campaign is a click away from starting. I'll do a special Tortuga Flats Farm blog the day it pops.

Cayenne going red
Bell peppers
Jalapenos and cayenne
Sadi Belle eating a bell right off the vine


  1. Anything fresh of the vine is far too delicious to resist. By contrast, in our small suburban garden, I grew out first ever cucumbers. They were delicious and still warm from the sun. Maybe I'll grow soy beans next year too as I buy far to many from Trader Joes.

    1. Good idea, Maddy. Check your label on Trader Joes. Make sure their GMO free and organic.

  2. Your pepper plants look lush. You can't see any weeds.

    1. They're so thick, Roz, that not many weeds make it. In some areas the Bermuda grass is rampant. And there's a new vine weed this year that wraps around them which I keep pulling off. Dang thing comes back.

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  4. Gorgeous! The only thing I like better than eating fresh veggies is great photos of them. :>)

  5. Sadie Belle is precious! Our garden is almost finished, though the hubby is still harvesting green eggplants. We prefer them over the purple ones. He also grew burpless cucumbers which were delicious. Due to the heavy rains, I didn't get to harvest any figs this year. Though our squirrels sure enjoyed them. Those tight windows of harvest are rough!

    1. Sounds yummy, Pepper. We supposedly have fig trees but we've been here 3 years and have not seen fruit. No one is a fig person here so we have researched to find out why.