Sauerkraut and garden harvests

It’s a strange time of year when a very late winter crop and an ultra early summer crop overlaps in harvest but they have indeed done just that. 🙂

I finally got around to harvesting the last of our cabbages out the front. I’d been giving them away to all and sundry but even so, the amount of cabbage we had was daunting. I guess I never expected to be as successful at growing them as I was and with the largest of the cabbages coming in at an estimated 7+ kgs (my scales stop at 5 so we found a cabbage just under 5 then guessed) and having well over 10 cabbages, well you can see where I was at.

Cabbages and my helper harvester

Cabbages and my helper harvester

Despite a good collection of ultra sharp knives, none of them were long enough. Break out the wood saw.

Despite a good collection of ultra sharp knives, none of them were long enough. Break out the wood saw.

They were also all incredibly dense inside.

They were also all incredibly dense inside.

The kids and Martin all helped with processing the cabbages, creating ferments to last throughout the year. We now have 24 quart jars of sauerkraut fermenting, plus an 8L stock pot full to about 6L or more as well as 1 pint jar, 1 1L jar and 7 mayonnaise jars too. And the fridge still has plenty from last time as well! If you come for lunch here you will more than likely be served up sauerkraut and fermented onions too. 🙂


4 trays of kraut in jars plus the 8L stockpot full and also weighed down with further jars then the jam etc jars at the front right of the cupboard.

The summer crop harvest was potatoes. I started off with a quick bandicoot but upon seeing the size of what I pulled out I just couldn’t stop! I bandicooted most of the bed. There’s a small area to the other side of the trellis that has a row of spuds but they were planted much later. These came up as volunteers from the green spuds I threw in the compost from last summer’s harvest.

Some are baby potato size, others are perfect for a meal entire.

Some are baby potato size, others are perfect for a meal entire.

Not the biggest one.

Not the biggest one.

The veggie patch is broken up into 2 areas. The standard patch where we’ve been growing the last 3 summers, this one included but now we also have the zone 1 beds.


My scarlet runner beans. They are helping to shade the spuds from a little of the intense sun.


Scarlet runner bean flowers and sunset runner beans too. Pretty aren’t they.

The gardens are looking most verdant and we are harvesting the first tomatoes now which taste of summer. Pumpkins are heading for 10ft high and the fruit are all in slings made from scraps of track suit ribbing.


How they ripen in such heavy self made shade I will never know but YUM! They’re up in the zone 1 garden.


My 3 zone 1 beds. The first one is corn, pumpkins up the trellis and there’s sweet potato for a ground cover down the front of the bed too. I’ve also just poked a few beans into the mix. Behind that is tomatoes, some parsnips, warrigal greens from Gav and a few buried capsicums and parsley.


Our trellis of hops


The reo mesh trellis which is actually quite artistic in its curving form is to provide trellising for vining plants to shade the house. The sweet potato in the 3rd bed needs to hurry up from behind the tomatoes and turnips.

I’ve harvested some beans from the dwarf beans growing behind the pergola area and turnips that are huge. They’ve taught me all I need to know at this stage about soil. We have very fertile soil here despite it being fairly heavy and I can work with that. 🙂 Lots of carbon to be added via compost to our soil. Duly noted and thanks for the turnip lesson!


I had assumed this was a pumpkin but they were seeds that I’d not labelled well and it could well be spaghetti squash. Anyone know or do I need to pick one and check?

So what are you harvesting from your gardens? Has the weather been kind to you as it has to us with warm days and lots of rain? It’s not nice weather for people but the garden is loving it. 😀


Yarn bombing at Mill Park library near my brother’s place. As much as I think this is a terrible waste of yarn I must admit that it is beautiful. These pillars are HUGE.





15 thoughts on “Sauerkraut and garden harvests

  1. Lynda D says:

    So much going on in your garden. Oh the joy of it all. Rewards for all that huge effort made throughout the year. Nope, not coming for Sauerkraut. Well Done Jess.

  2. Sue says:

    I wish I could say I was harvesting something – anything, but sadly that’s not the case 😦
    However we have a rampant sweet potato growing behind the boundary fence, plus some kind of citrus, yet to be identified – would be good if I could get close enough to look at it closely but its a bit of jungle down there and slowly making my way towards.
    Did manage to forage some roadside apples today. While they are too tart for eating they could make some applesauce or apple cider vinegar or fruit chutney or….

    • Sweet potato is a harvest in waiting and apple foraging is definitely a harvest too. I’m off to check out a tree that I think is a nectarine tree (I was doing 100kms past it though so I could be mistaken) and hopefully scrounge another free harvest for bottling and eating. 🙂 our local apples are coming along nicely but aren’t ready to eat quite yet. Perhaps another month or so? LOVE a free harvest. 😀

  3. says:

    It doesn’t look like a spaghetti squash, ours were much smoother and quite yellow skinned. Not sure.

    Regards, Ingrid


  4. Lovely to see your garden harvested produce.. I can not wait to get sowing seeds.. They arrived on Saturday from our local allotment association..
    I really must learn how to make Sauerkraut properly.. Have you a favourite you follow?.. As I have seen various ones on line.. 🙂

    Great photos of your garden..

    • Sauerkraut is so very easy to make. I just googled for recipes and actually combine 2. This recipe I just found would work. . I pack mine into mason jars but you can use anything really. If you don’t have enough juices, use some salty filtered water (if you can’t filter the water, leave it out overnight for the chlorine to offgas), about 2tsp salt to a litre of water I think. I use my wood rolling pin to hammer the cabbage too. If you get stuck, google for recipes. Most of them are the same although some add spices but you can just omit them easily enough. 🙂 Let me know how you go.

      Thanks too. It’s definitely not the photographer, nor the gardener. Mother nature is being very kind this year and making me look good. 😉

  5. narf77 says:

    Nothing but huge zukes and blueberries here at the moment. LOTS of tomatoes but all green and I sowed some lettuce the other day which are coming up and will hopefully make it through the hottest month to keep us in salads. Because we only just build the last 2 big gardens they are only just starting to take off with what we planted in them but the tomatillos appear to be loving it and are sprinting ahead. I will take a lesson from the first one and will stake them early. Planted out the red currant grape and am saving up for a red finger lime. NO idea what that is. Some kind of squash methinks. You might have to take your memory back to remember what you bought or got seed wise and see if you can’t narrow it down a bit. A shame to cut it and see now. Our pumpkins are coming on as well and hopefully the possums won’t break in this year and pinch most of them! Looking forward to an actual harvest this year albeit later in the season than you guys on the mainland. Love that yarn bombing as well. Sometimes art needs to be indulged for arts sake 🙂

  6. foodnstuff says:

    Well. Done. You. I’m getting plenty of tomatoes but not much else. The zukes and pumpkins have only male flowers…..waiting for apples to ripen….likewise corn to flower…..have got early kale in, though. Just lovely to NOT be having 40 degree days. Oh, and plenty of basil…..already made one batch of pesto.

    Love the idea of the reo on the windows. Will make a note of that one, for sure.

    • It’s only the cherry tomatoes that are ripening and I’ve a few zukes too. I pulled a couple of leeks today and I’ll make ratatouille tomorrow. 🙂
      The reo doesn’t block the view to much but it’s an awesome strong trellis up which things can climb (including small children to which I can personally testify to but hope my kids hold off doing for a few more years). and reo will outlast any wooden trellising too.

  7. Jo says:

    Ooh, Jess, nice cabbages:) I did some taste testing of gourmet sauerkrauts at our whole food shop the other day. The one with dill added was my favourite. I am determined to give this a whirl this year.

    • Have a try Jo, it’s really so very easy! I’ve made fermented coleslaw too and that’s lovely. With my fermented garlic aioli mixed in instead of bought mayo, it’s delicious. 😀

  8. […] mentioned the other day about my super-sized possible pumpkins but my lack of confidence in identifying the actual […]

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