There is a man, in a house, in The Farm, that loves a pepper bush. It’s his pride and joy.
Well, I guess he just loves peppers in general.
This man loves his pepper bush so much that he made a necklace of all the peppers that came off of it during the long hot Summer and hung them to dry.
At night, all he would dream of was the beautiful peppers that abundantly grew. He carefully picked and separated all the good from the bad.
He made sure to make the “necklace” of only the strongest fishing wire that would surely stay strong all Summer long.
One day, his loving, sweet, clumsy wife decided to surprise the man and turn his beautifully dried peppers into something that would last much longer than the peppers ever could.
She decided to make his peppers into Ground Cayenne Peppers.
So, the good wife threw caution to the wind and picked up the dried peppers (without gloves) like a boss, pinching them one by one, and throwing them into the food processor.
What the good wife DIDN’T know was that even though the skins ground up beautifully, the seeds would not, NO MATTER HOW LONG she processed them.
Being the smart wife she was, she decided to remove the lid of the processor…………. only to be met by an invisible cloud of festering fire! The kind that starts inconspicuously in your nostrils and then quickly moves to your sinuses and before you know it, turns your body into a rage of sneezing convulsions.
PLAN B! , she thought!
Once her body stopped spasming from the uncontrollable sneezing, she regrouped and went to the store to buy a Pestle and Mortar set. She had always wanted one and this may just be the perfect opportunity!
When the good wife returned home, she braved the concoction yet once again. Armed with her new tool,
she thought surely it would work this time………
The good wife’s optimism was only met with disappointment when she realized that the seeds would not grind up with the Pestle and Mortar set either.
PLAN C, she thought!
What better gift …………. than that of not one, but two gifts!
It was then and only then when she was faced with yet another obstacle, that she truly found what she was supposed to do all along.
The good wife decided to give the man Dried Red Pepper Flakes and Ground Cayenne Pepper.
The Red Pepper Flakes were abundant!
The Ground Cayenne Pepper?………………….. Not so much.
No worries though. The wife was very happy.
And the man?
Well, the man was very grateful.
If! And only if you are truly brave, proceed to the recipe below:
And just so you know, it wouldn’t hurt to wear a mask……. or two! LOL!
Recipe: Homemade Ground Cayenne Pepper and Red Pepper Flakes
– Dried Peppers from Cayenne Pepper Bush
– Teaspoon Salt
– Pinch stems off tops of dried peppers and add to a Food Processor or Pestle and Mortar. Add salt and process or grind until you reach desired consistency.
– Separate flakes from ground cayenne by using a sifter.
– Store in an air tight container.
Eeeeeek! Spring has Sprung and I am just tickled about it!
You know you are too! How could you not be?
The air is warming up and once in a while you get that perfect day that allows you to dream of those beautiful flowers and veggies you have wanted to plant and grow forever.
Then you grab your car keys……….. run out the door without hesitation………… and then RUN back in once you realize you have forgotten your children (don’t judge me) …………..
then you RUN back out the door and drive to your nearest Home Improvement Store and go WILD!
Well, I didn’t do that exactly, but I WANTED TO SOOOOOOOO BAD!
Instead, I was very patient ( which is completely UNLIKE me) and I waited and planned and built a Raised Vegetable Garden Bed with the hubster.
We did it without a plan and SO CAN YOU! Very easy. We were first time DIYers with this and it turned out great!
I have to say I am very Proud of us.
Here is what we did:
We knew that we wanted the garden bed to be 4ft. x 12ft., so we bought 12 ft. pieces of cedar. We figured for the sides, we could just cut them to 4 ft.
We also bought short 4 ft. pieces of wood that would act as support boards and also an area that the screws could adhere to, in order to stack the boards. We had a few pieces of cedar siding that we improvised with and used so that we wouldn’t have to buy as much cedar.
Don’t mind the ladder. It’s just there for moral support. 😉
We attached the first 12 ft. piece of cedar to the sticks. This top piece split a little on the car ride home, but it wasn’t a concern.
This is what it looked like afterwards.
Then we attached the second piece using the same method. We just lined it up under the top one.
Now, we had (2) 12 ft. pieces of cedar attached to the 2 wood sticks at each end.
We had 4 screws on each side.
We knew we would need more support, so we added an additional board in the middle and attached the boards to it.
Afterwards, we trimmed the length on the support sticks.
This is what they looked like after being trimmed.
We repeated those steps with the boards for the other side. Then, instead of doing it again for the shorter 4ft. pieces, we decided to just attach them to the ends.
This is the 4ft end piece. We attached the two screws for it to the support stick that we had also attached the adjoining side to .
Z even let me get in on the action. Then, he went behind me, removed the crooked screw I attached, and reattached it correctly. Oh well….
Here is a shot of the bed after one board.
Now the finished side.
Then, to keep burrowing pests out, we attached a heavy duty plastic chicken net to the bottom with “U” shaped nails. We didn’t use wire netting b/c I have before and it toar up our hands during the process. I know you could just use gloves, but I’m lazy and I looked it up and the pests shouldn’t be able to chew through the heavy plastic. I might be updating this later if I find that not to be true.
We made sure that it was secure by nailing every ft. or so along the wood.
Since the netting wasn’t wide enough, we had to overlap some of it and then we just trimmed it off at the end with a razor blade.
Buster kept a watchful eye out just in case any rabbits tried to eat our veggies. How do I know I have rabbits? By the piles of “unpleasantries” I found left for me in my yard. (Is that a word?)
The great thing about gardening in general is it seems to awaken something within children. All 3 of my kids love to go out with their Nana and help her with the garden.
Heck! They will even help her pick up Doggie Poopoo at her house. I haven’t mastered that art here yet, but I’m working on it.
My oldest was beggin me to let her plant the veggies. I wanted to make sure they were done correctly the first time, so instead, I let her plant the marigolds around them.
I CANNOT wait to see how these turn out. I have wanted to plant Heirloom Tomatoes for a while. Z asked me if I thought we would get our money back out of the beds? As soon as I went to the grocery store and saw that tomatoes were $1.99 / lb. , I quickly answered , “Ummmmmm Errrrrrrrrrr Yup! ”
We planted 3 Crookneck Squash , 1 Zucchini, 2 Cherry Tomatoes, 4 Homestead Heirloom Tomatoe, 4 Marion Tomatoes, 2 Cayenne Peppers, and we will be making a seperate 4 x 4 ft. bed for our Cucumbers.
We also planted the Marigolds throughout the bed and will be doing the same thing with the Cucumber bed. Marigolds help keep the bugs off the plants. That is why we plant them. Plus, they look Purrrrrrrrty in there!
I should add that we used to have a garden back where we are from. We were so excited the first year we did it. We had a pretty big backyard, so we planted just about a 1/4 acre of it with all sorts of things. Well, I really had no idea how much it was going to yield and let me tell you , when it started ……….. it didn’t stop!
I couldn’t give it away fast enough before it started to go bad. I think this smaller modest raised bed is much better for us, though my friends might wish we had the larger garden so that we can share. 🙂
*I’ll update as we go and show the progress of the plants, as well as give helpful tips on vegetable growing.