Sunday, August 21, 2011

No Grape Jelly :(

Paul, Rhiannon and I took a little walk around the property this morning, enjoying the relatively "cool" 90 degree weather.  There's a path where the wild grapes grow and I was anxious to see how they survived the insane heat this summer.   They didn't:

I still have a few other spots to check where I've seen other grapes grow, but somehow I think they must have all met the same fate.

Last September I managed to pick and process enough grape juice to make around sixteen pints of jelly.  There are still six pints left in the pantry, but now I have to ration them so they last until NEXT year! 

Kind'a makes me think how completely bare our pantry shelves would be (and how much thinner we'd be) if we had to grow our own food.  It's not like we're even close to providing the bare minimum of fruits and vegetables for daily use, let alone having to have enough left over to can until the following spring / summer harvests.  Throw in a bummer of a spring / summer crop and then you'd have to grow enough produce to have two years worth of canned goods.

It's not like our pantry shelves are bare though.  We have the means to purchase our canned goods, but I'd like to start replacing the store bought stuff with homegrown goodies. 

Got to go back outside and continue working on the fall garden!


  1. So sad about the grapes! :(
    I am getting worried about the possibility of no prickly pears for making into jelly here, as the combo of last winters excessive (for us) snows and then the blistering heat and unrelenting drought here devastated my patch of cacti. A lady up the street still has the cacti, but they aren't looking too healthy this year.

  2. Hmmm....never made prickly pear jelly. My Mom has a bunch of those cacti, are they the flat ones with the little nubbins on top that turn red in the fall?

  3. It is frustrating when a crop doesn't grow, especially when you depend on it to nourish and feed your family. That's why when you have extra, to ahead and make it, because you don't know when you won't. At least you have some to get you through this coming year.

    We have been blessed by some other foods that we don't normally get. I was able to pick and dry some apricots. A friend invited me to her plum tree and it is loaded. I made up 9 pints of plum jam today and have plenty leftover to snack on. A friend picked blueberries for me last month because she knew I was busy- she only charged me her u-pick price and wouldn't take a penny extra. Corn and green beans are odd this year. I canned green beans, but they had a lot of rust spots and blemishes. It took a long time to try and prepare them for the canner. Our local farmers are not growing corn this year because the local produce packer isn't accepting any. So I had to buy some from the farmer's market, and it was almost too mature, but I canned up 16 pints yesterday.

    Next year your grapes will bless you with fruit. You'll be so busy with juice and jelly you won't know what to do!

  4. It has just been a very bad gardening and orchard year.

    I had fruit trees that didn't even bloom, a first!

    Let's all pray for a better 'next year'.

  5. I hear ya...I am anxious to even TRY canning...but would need to have extra harvest to can - not gonna happen again this year. Oh well - I say next year is going to be THE year!!

  6. Um...raisins? No? Ok, well then next year! And hopefully it cooperates with your goals all around!