preserving goals 2016

It’s December.  I am supposed to be thinking about Christmas and school and work, but all that I can think about is the upcoming growing season.  I was in the garden on Saturday and I was ready to start the new year. I have a lot of goals for myself next year.  The first full summer in the garden was quite productive, but I still find myself wanting more.  I know I can do more and better.  This year I am going to:

  1. Construct my first irrigation system
  2. Use three of my beds for an experiment with beans, perennial greens, potatoes and flowers (stay tuned for more horticultural excitement)
  3. Start selling perennials and tomato plants
  4. Experiment with plant towers that include “living mulch” perennials

Last year I also ended up with a lot of lost crops because I did not have the equipment needed to preserve them.

This year, I plan to purchase a dehydrator.


We are also going to get a freezer.  I need to be able to freeze beans, broccoli and spinach (among other things).  I know I could buy a pressure cooker, but I am not so keen on the idea.  They are expensive and I don’t necessarily trust myself.  I think a freezer would be better because then when certain things are on sale, I can stock up.

canning rack

A canning rack is also a “must have”.  Last year I used a kitchen towel.  It worked, but was rather annoying and sometimes dangerous.  In a pinch, it can be done, but I do not necessarily recommend it and especially not for canning large amounts.

apple peeler

Other than that, I should buy an apple peeler/slicer.  It would make life just that much simpler and faster.  Maybe I would have made more apple sauce.  Instead, I ended up burying a fair amount of apples throughout the garden.

With these new items (and the ones I already have), my goals for preserving in 2016 are as followed:

  • tomatoes (dried, canned [natural, tomato jam, salsa, sauce], freezer sauce)
  • onions (dried, dry storage, in canning recipes)
  • cucumbers (pickles, relish)
  • peppers (dried, pickled)
  • cherries (preserves, pie filling, dried [I burnt last year’s attempt])
  • brussel sprouts (frozen)
  • herbs (dried, + mixes, vinegar)
  • radishes (pickled)
  • beets (pickled)
  • strawberries, raspberries & blackberries (jam, frozen)
  • spinach & other greens (frozen, dried)
  • beans (dried, frozen)
  • apples (apple sauce pure/cinnamon, apple butter, apple pie filling, vinegar, wine)
  • tea (dried [mint, bergamont, lemon balm, chamomile])
  • at least 50 kilos of potatoes (1/2 early, 1/2 middle)
  • quinoa & amaranth (dried – experiment on yield, first year)
  • grapes (wine)

I also need to find a recipe that makes peaches taste good or a place to donate the peaches because I think they taste yucky (suggestions anyone?).  And finally, I am really going to start saving seed this year.  Last year I only collected seed from flowers and beans.  This year I want seeds from every type of plant that I grow.

I am sure that there are other things that I will end up doing, but I just needed to get that off my chest.  I am so excited (especially because it is seed ordering time) I can barely contain myself.  So, thanks for listening and have a great day!


2 thoughts on “preserving goals 2016

  1. I want a dehydrator too. And a pressure canner. But they both seem like things you must buy quality, which is going to cost you a pretty penny. Good luck! Looking forward to how saving seeds from every plants goes!

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